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Technical Paper

Reduction of Hydrocarbon Emissions from SI-Engines by Use of Carbon Pistons

The use of pistons made of fine grain carbon was investigated in a spark-ignition engine within a European Community funded research project (TPRO-CT92-0008). Pistons were designed and manufactured and then tested in a single cylinder engine. Due to the carbon material's lower coefficient of thermal expansion the top land clearance between piston and cylinder can be reduced by a factor of three in comparison to standard aluminium designs. Under steady-state part-load operating conditions the emission of unburned hydrocarbons can be reduced by more than 15% compared to aluminium pistons, without significant penalties in NOx-emissions. Simultaneously, a small improvement in fuel economy of about 2% is observed. At full-load blow-by leakage flow is reduced by more than 50%. The piston crown temperature is about 30°C higher with the carbon piston than with the standard aluminium piston, due to the lower thermal conductivity of the carbon material.
Technical Paper

The Potential of Small DI-Diesel Engines with 250 cm3/Cylinder for Passenger Car Drive Trains

The demand for fuel-efficient, low-displacement engines for future passenger car applications led to investigations with small DI diesel engines in the advanced engineering department at Mercedes-Benz. Single-cylinder tests were carried out to compare a 2-valve concept with 241 cm3 displacement with a 422 cm3 4-valve design, both operated with a common rail injection system. Mean effective pressures at full load were about 10 % lower with the smaller displacement. With such engines a specific power of 40 kW/I and a specific torque of about 140 Nm/I should be possible. In the current stage of optimization, penalties in fuel economy could be reduced down to values below 3 %. The “4-cylinder DI diesel engine with 1 liter displacement” is an interesting alternative to small 3 cylinder concepts with higher displacement per cylinder. An introduction into series production will not only depend on the potential for further improvement in fuel economy of such small cylinder units.
Technical Paper

How Heat Losses to the Spark Plug Electrodes Affect Flame Kernel Development in an SI-Engine

A conventional spark plug and a spark plug with smaller electrodes were studied in M.I.T.'s transparent square piston engine. The purpose was to learn more about how the electrode geometry affects the heat losses to the electrodes and the electrical performance of the ignition system, and how this affects the flame development process in an engine. A schlieren system which provides two orthogonal views of the developing flame was used to define the initial flame growth process, for as many as 100 consecutive cycles. Voltage and current waveforms were recorded to characterize the spark discharge, and cylinder pressure data were used to characterize the engine performance. The spark plug with the smaller electrodes was shown to reduce the heat losses to the electrodes, and thereby extend the stable operating regime of the engine. At conditions close to the stable operating limit, cycle-by-cycle variations in heat losses cause significant cyclic variations in flame development.
Technical Paper

A New CFD Approach for Assessment of Swirl Flow Pattern in HSDI Diesel Engines

The fulfillment of the aggravated demands on future small-size High-Speed Direct Injection (HSDI) Diesel engines requires next to the optimization of the injection system and the combustion chamber also the generation of an optimal in-cylinder swirl charge motion. To evaluate different port concepts for modern HSDI Diesel engines, usually quantities as the in-cylinder swirl ratio and the flow coefficient are determined, which are measured on a steady-state flow test bench. It has been shown that different valve lift strategies nominally lead to similar swirl levels. However, significant differences in combustion behavior and engine-out emissions give rise to the assumption that local differences in the in-cylinder flow structure caused by different valve lift strategies have noticeable impact. In this study an additional criterion, the homogeneity of the swirl flow, is introduced and a new approach for a quantitative assessment of swirl flow pattern is presented.
Technical Paper

Catalyst Aging Method for Future Emissions Standard Requirements

This paper describes an alternative catalyst aging process using a hot gas test stand for thermal aging. The solution presented is characterized by a burner technology that is combined with a combustion enhancement, which allows stoichiometric and rich operating conditions to simulate engine exhaust gases. The resulting efficiency was increased and the operation limits were broadened, compared to combustion engines that are typically used for catalyst aging. The primary modification that enabled this achievement was the recirculation of exhaust gas downstream from catalyst back to the burner. The burner allows the running simplified dynamic durability cycles, which are the standard bench cycle that is defined by the legislation as alternative aging procedure and the fuel shut-off simulation cycle ZDAKW. The hot gas test stand approach has been compared to the conventional engine test bench method.
Technical Paper

Glow-plug Ignition of Ethanol Fuels under Diesel Engine Relevant Thermodynamic Conditions

The requirement of reducing worldwide CO₂ emissions and engine pollutants are demanding an increased use of bio-fuels. Ethanol with its established production technology can contribute to this goal. However, due to its resistive auto-ignition behavior the use of ethanol-based fuels is limited to the spark-ignited gasoline combustion process. For application to the compression-ignited diesel combustion process advanced ignition systems are required. In general, ethanol offers a significant potential to improve the soot emission behavior of the diesel engine due to its oxygen content and its enhanced evaporation behavior. In this contribution the ignition behavior of ethanol and mixtures with high ethanol content is investigated in combination with advanced ignition systems with ceramic glow-plugs under diesel engine relevant thermodynamic conditions in a high pressure and temperature vessel.
Technical Paper

Impact of Fuel Properties on the Performance of a Direct Injection Diesel Engine under Part Homogeneous Operating Conditions

Tightening of emission norms necessitate intensified research in the field of emissions reduction. Fuel research opens up a vast area of potential improvement, since combustion behavior and the nature of the combustion products can be heavily influenced by fuel composition. In this paper, the effects of fuel properties on combustion and emissions shall be discussed, based on the study of standard diesel fuel, two types of diesel-like fuels and a kerosene fuel. Investigations were conducted on a single cylinder heavy duty direct-injected diesel engine operating under part-homogeneous combustion in the part-load operating range. For this purpose, a statistical design of experiments method (DOE) was utilized in order to evaluate the influence of each fuel property and, thus, develop a model for all selected fuels. Variation in EGR rates, injection and air patterns have significant effects on the combustion in the fuels under investigation.
Technical Paper

Prediction of Combustion Delay and -Duration of Homogeneous Charge Gasoline Engines based on In-Cylinder Flow Simulation

In this paper a new approach is presented to evaluate the combustion behaviour of homogeneous gasoline engines by predicting burn delay and -duration in a way which can be obtained under the time constraints of the development process. This is accomplished by means of pure in-cylinder flow simulations without a classical combustion model. The burn delay model is based on the local distribution of the turbulent flow near the spark plug. It features also a methodology to compare different designs regarding combustion stability. The correlation for burn duration uses a turbulent characteristic number that is obtained from the turbulent flow in the combustion chamber together with a model for the turbulent burning velocity. The results show good agreement with the combustion process of the analyzed engines.
Technical Paper

Borderline Design of Crankshafts Based on Hybrid Simulation Technology

This paper introduces different modeling approaches of crankshafts, compares the refinement levels and discusses the difference between the results of the crankshaft durability calculation methodologies. A V6 crankshaft is considered for the comparison of the refinement levels depending on the deviation between the signals such as main bearing forces and deflection angle. Although a good correlation is observed between the results in low speed range, the deviation is evident through the mid to high speed ranges. The deviation amplitude differs depending on the signal being observed and model being used. An inline 4 crankshaft is considered for the comparison of the durability results. The analysis results show that the durability potential is underestimated with a classical crankshaft calculation approach which leads to a limitation of maximum speed of 5500 rpm.
Technical Paper

Potential of Modern Diesel Engines with Lowest Raw Emissions - a Key Factor for Future CO2 Reduction

The high-speed Dl-diesel engine has made a significant advance since the beginning of the 90's in the Western European passenger car market. Apart from the traditional advantage in fuel economy, further factors contributing to this success have been significantly improved performance and power density, as well as the permanent progress made in acoustics and comfort. In addition to the efforts to improve efficiency of automotive powertrains, the requirement for cleaner air increases through the continuous worldwide restriction of emissions by legislative regulations for diesel engines. Against the backdrop of global climate change, significant reduction of CO2 is observed. Hence, for the future, engine and vehicle concepts are needed, that, while maintaining the well-established attractive market attributes, compare more favorably with regard to fuel consumption.
Technical Paper

Acoustics of Hybrid Vehicles

The technology used in hybrid vehicle concepts is significantly different from conventional vehicle technology with consequences also for the noise and vibration behavior. In conventional vehicles, certain noise phenomena are masked by the engine noise. In situations where the combustion engine is turned off in hybrid vehicle concepts, these noise components can become dominant and annoying. In hybrid concepts, the driving condition is often decoupled from the operation state of the combustion engine, which leads to unusual and unexpected acoustical behavior. New acoustic phenomena such as magnetic noise due to recuperation occur, caused by new components and driving conditions. The analysis of this recuperation noise by means of interior noise simulation shows, that it is not only induced by the powertrain radiation but also by the noise path via the powertrain mounts. The additional degrees of freedom of the hybrid drive train can also be used to improve the vibrational behavior.
Technical Paper

The Impact of Different Biofuel Components in Diesel Blends on Engine Efficiency and Emission Performance

Within the Cluster of Excellence “Tailor-Made Fuels from Biomass” at RWTH Aachen University, the Institute for Combustion Engines carried out an investigation program to explore the potential of future biofuel components in Diesel blends. In this paper, thermodynamic single cylinder engine results of today's and future biofuel components are presented with respect to their engine-out emissions and engine efficiency. The investigations were divided into two phases: In the first phase, investigations were performed with rapeseed oil methyl ester (B100) and an Ethanol-Gasoline blend (E85). In order to analyze the impact of different fuel blends, mixtures with 10 vol-% of B100 or E85 and 90 vol-% of standardized EN590 Diesel were investigated. Due to the low cetane number of E85, it cannot be used purely in a Diesel engine.
Technical Paper

Tailor-Made Fuels: The Potential of Oxygen Content in Fuels for Advanced Diesel Combustion Systems

Fuels derived from biomass will most likely contain oxygen due to the high amount of hydrogen needed to remove oxygen in the production process. Today, alcohol fuels (e. g. ethanol) are well understood for spark ignition engines. The Institute for Combustion Engines at RWTH Aachen University carried out a fuel investigation program to explore the potential of alcohol fuels as candidates for future compression ignition engines to reduce engine-out emissions while maintaining engine efficiency and an acceptable noise level. The soot formation and oxidation process when using alcohol fuels in diesel engines is not yet sufficiently understood. Depending on the chain length, alcohol fuels vary in cetane number and boiling temperature. Decanol possesses a diesel-like cetane number and a boiling point in the range of the diesel boiling curve. Thus, decanol was selected as an alcohol representative to investigate the influence of the oxygen content of an alcohol on the combustion performance.
Technical Paper

Optimized Layout of Gasoline Engines for Hybrid Powertrains

Due to the complex powertrain layout in hybrid vehicles, different configurations concerning internal combustion engine, electric motor and transmission can be combined - as is demonstrated by currently produced hybrid vehicles ([1], [2]). At the Institute for Combustion Engines (VKA) at RWTH Aachen University a combination of simulation, Design of Experiments (DoE) and numerical optimization methods was used to optimize the combustion engine, the powertrain configuration and the operation strategy in hybrid powertrains. A parametric description allows a variation of the main hybrid parameters. Parallel as well as power-split hybrid powertrain configurations were optimized with regard to minimum fuel consumption in the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC). Besides the definition of the optimum configuration for engine, powertrain and operation strategy this approach offers the possibility to predict the fuel consumption for any modifications of the hybrid powertrains.
Technical Paper

Injection Rate Shaping Investigations on a Small – Bore DI Diesel Engine

So far, the effect of injection rate shaping on the diesel combustion in small-bore DI diesel engines has not been extensively investigated, especially at high part load conditions with high EGR rates. The benefit of injection rate shaping is already verified for heavy duty engines at high load conditions with and without EGR. For this investigation, single cylinder engine investigations were conducted at the VKA / RWTH Aachen University. In order to meet the future NOx legislation limits like US-Tier2Bin5 it is crucial to reduce NOx especially at the high load points of the certification cycles, as FTP75 or US06. For the single cylinder investigations two part load points were chosen, which have relevance for the mentioned certification cycles. The experimental work focuses on different rate shapes as rectangular (Common-Rail type), ramp and boot shape at high EGR rates.
Technical Paper

Diesel Combustion Control with Closed-Loop Control of the Injection Strategy

Current and future emission legislations require a significant reduction of engine-out emissions for Diesel engines. For a further reduction of engine-out emissions, different measures are necessary such as: Especially an advanced emission and closed-loop combustion control has gained increased significance during the past years.
Technical Paper

Gas Exchange Optimization and the Impact on Emission Reduction for HSDI Diesel Engines

The main tasks for all future powertrain developments are: regulated emissions, CO2-values, comfort, good drivability, high reliability and affordable costs. One widely discussed approach for fuel consumption improvement within passenger car applications, is to incorporate the downsizing effect. To attain constant engine performance an increase of boost pressure and/or rated speed is mandatory. In both cases, the mass flow rate through the intake and exhaust ports and valves will rise. In this context, the impact of the port layout on the system has to be reassessed. In this paper, the impact of the port layout on a modern diesel combustion system will be discussed and a promising concept shall be described in detail. The investigations shown include flow measurements, PIV measurements of intake flow, CFD simulations of the flow field during intake and results from the thermodynamic test bench. One of the important topics is to prove the impact of the flow quality on the combustion.
Technical Paper

Tailor-Made Fuels for Future Advanced Diesel Combustion Engines

The finite nature and instability of fossil fuel supply has led to an increasing and enduring investigation demand of alternative and regenerative fuels. The Institute for Combustion Engines at the RWTH Aachen University carried out an investigation program to explore the potential of tailor made fuels to reduce engine-out emissions while maintaining engine efficiency and an acceptable noise level. To enable optimum engine performance a range of different hydrocarbons having different fuel properties like cetane number, boiling temperature and different molecular compositions have been investigated. Paraffines and naphthenes were selected in order to better understand the effects of molecular composition and chain length on emissions and performance of an engine that was already optimized for advanced combustion performance. The diesel single-cylinder research engine used in this study will be used to meet Euro 6 emissions limits and beyond.
Technical Paper

Investigation of Spray-Bowl Interaction Using Two-Part Analysis in a Direct-Injection Diesel Engine

The purpose of this study is to investigate the effect of spray-bowl interaction on combustion, and pollutants formation at one specific high-load point of a single-cylinder small-bore diesel engine through computational analysis. The simulations are performed using Representative Interactive Flamelet (RIF) model with detailed chemical kinetics. Detailed chemistry-based soot model is used for the prediction of soot emissions. The simulations are performed for five different injection timings. Model-predicted cylinder pressure and exhaust emissions are validated against the measured data for all the injection timings. A new method - Two-part analysis - is then applied to investigate the spray-bowl interaction. Two-part analysis splits the volume of the combustion chamber into two, namely the piston bowl and the squish volume. Through analysis, among others the histories of soot, carbon monoxide (CO) and nitric oxide (NO ) emissions inside both volumes are shown.
Technical Paper

Potentials of Variable Compressor Pre Swirl Devices in Consideration of Different Sealing Concepts

For turbocharged engines high specific power and torque output as well as a fast transient response are mandatory. This conflict of aims can be solved by different charging systems, for example 2-stage charging or variable turbine geometry. At the Institute for Combustion Engines (VKA) at RWTH Aachen University another alternative, the variable compressor pre swirl, was investigated for solving this conflict of aims. Based on theoretical fundamentals the potentials of a variable compressor pre swirl for transient response, low end torque, specific power output and fuel consumption were presented. These theoretical potentials were explored on turbocharger -, engine - and vehicle test bench. An extended compressor map with partial higher compressor efficiency of up to 2% was detected. The outcome of this is an increase of up to 6% in low end torque, found on engine test bench. This effect could also be validated in 1D simulation.