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Technical Paper

Evolution of Heavy Duty Natural Gas Engines - Stoichiometric, Carbureted and Spark Ignited to Lean Burn, Fuel Injected and Micro-Pilot

Natural gas is a low cost, abundant and clean burning fuel. Current internal combustion engines can be readily adapted to use natural gas fuel either in conjunction with conventional liquid fuels or as dedicated systems. Use of modern electronic controls allows consideration of new engine management strategies that are not practical or even possible with mechanical systems. The preferred approach is pre-mixed lean burn with cylinder-by-cylinder fuel injection and full time control of optimized air/fuel ratio and ignition.
Technical Paper

Strategies to Improve Combustion and Emission Characteristics of Dual-Fuel Pilot Ignited Natural Gas Engines

Dual-fuel pilot ignited natural gas engines have several intrinsic advantages relative to spark ignited; mainly higher thermal efficiency and lower conversion costs. The major drawback is associated with light loads. This paper discusses objectives, approaches, methods and results of the development of strategies which overcome the drawbacks and enhance the advantages. Development of a pilot fuel injection system, having a delivery of only 1 mm3 at a duration of 0.6 ms, was described in a previous paper. This paper concentrates on the results of strategies to reduce unburned methane in the exhaust and to increase the substitution of gas at light loads through skip-fire, by-passing boost air and exhaust gas recirculation techniques. Engine tests proved that with these strategies, diesel fuel replacement of more than 95% over the entire engine operating map, including idle, can be achieved and current and anticipated future emission standards satisfied.
Technical Paper

All Electronic Dual Fuel Injection System for the Belarus D-144 Diesel Engine

Through the joint efforts of BKM, SPI, AFS and Belarus, an advanced, all- electronic dual fuel system has been developed for retrofit applications on the Belarus D-144, four-cylinder, 4.15 liter, 44.7 KW diesel engine. The system features all electronic control on both full diesel or up to 90 % gas with automatic and instant changeover capability. The existing mechanical diesel injection system was replaced with an all electronic, hydraulically actuated, diesel injection system coupled with timed multi-point electronic injection for the gas system. The control strategy does not utilize inlet throttling typically used on gas fueled engines. The effectiveness of this simplified control system is assumed to be the result of a degree of charge stratification. The D-144 engine is utilized in a wide variety of industrial, farm and highway applications. Special application requirements can be accommodated by programming the EPROM control chip.
Technical Paper

Effects of Fuel Injection on Diesel Combustion

Additional data has been analyzed on the effect of engine size on thermal efficiency. The comparison has been expanded to show the trends separately for engines developed by several different manufacturers. The data confirm the conclusion that engines below 2.0 liters per cylinder seem to deteriorate in fuel economy faster than would have been predicted from the behavior of larger engines. It is postulated that such deterioration results from a combination of less than optimum fuel spray, wall wetting, and perhaps a greater heat transfer loss than was anticipated. The paper focuses on engines in the size range under two liters per cylinder and addresses some of the problems to be resolved. Means for generating and controlling fuel spray and injection rate shape are presented along with experimental data on fuel sprays and engine combustion.
Technical Paper

Diesel Engine Flame Photographs With High Pressure Injection

The effect of high pressure injection (using an accumulator type unit injector with peak injection pressure of approximately 20,000 psi, having a decreasing injection rate profile) on combustion was studied. Combustion results were obtained using a DDA Series 3–53 diesel engine with both conventional analysis techniques and high speed photography. Diesel No. 2 fuel and a low viscosity - high volatility fuel, similar to gasoline were used in the study. Results were compared against baseline data obtained with standard injectors. Some of the characteristics of high pressure injection used with Diesel No. 2 fuel include: substantially improved ignition, shorter ignition delay, and higher pressure rise. Under heavy load - high speed conditions, greater smokemeter readings were achieved with the high pressure injection system with Diesel No. 2 fuel. Higher flame speeds and hence, greater resistance to knock were observed with the high volatility low cetane fuel.
Technical Paper

Optimized E.F.I. for Natural Gas Fueled Engines

Increasing emphasis on natural gas as a clean, economical, and abundant fuel, encourages the search for the optimum approach to management of fuel, air and combustion to achieve the best results in power, fuel economy and low exhaust emissions. Electronic injection of fuel directly into the throttle body, intake ports or directly into the cylinder offers important advantages over carburetion or mixing valves. This is particularly true in the case of installations in which the gas supply is available at several atmospheres pressure above maximum intake manifold pressure. The use of choked-flow pulse- width-modulated electronic injectors offers precision control over the engine operating range with a wide variety of options for both stoichiometric and lean bum applications. A complete system utilizing commercially available components together with the application, calibration and engine mapping techniques is described.
Technical Paper

Extending Lean Limit with Mass-Timed Compression Ignition Using a Catalytic Plasma Torch

Research on the Catalytic Plasma Torch (CPT) ignition system was conducted this last year at BKM, Inc. in San Diego. The results showed that under certain conditions CPT can not only time ignition properly, but also extend the lean stability limit. This concept is based upon compression ignition of the charge in the CPT's integral pre-chamber. Compression ignition is induced by timed catalytic reduction of the pre-chamber's activation energy. This produces almost instantaneous combustion in the pre-chamber and is divided into multiple high velocity torches to rapidly ignite the main chamber charge. The timing of the ignition event is based on the location of the heated catalyst in the pre-chamber and the mass of the charge inducted into the cylinder. The base timing curve can be modified via current control which effects the catalyst activity. Dynamic modification of the timing event is accomplished by using the catalyst as an in-cylinder hot wire anemometer.
Technical Paper

Direct Digital Control of Electronic Unit Injectors

A new type of diesel fuel injection uses a simple, medium-pressure, common-rail system with pressure intensifier and accumulator type unit injectors with digital electronic control to achieve high performance at low cost. The desirable features of high injection pressures with quantity and timing controlled directly by microprocessor are attained with a simple unique system. Data are presented on performance, efficiency, emissions, and relative cost. It is concluded that electronically controlled high pressure injection offers a practical and economical solution for efficient combustion in a diesel engine.
Technical Paper

Development of Pilot Fuel Injection System for CNG Engine

The paper discusses objectives, approaches and results of the development of a pilot fuel injection system (FIS) for a dedicated, compression ignition, high-speed, heavy duty natural gas/diesel engine. The performance of the pilot FIS is crucial for the success of a dual fuel concept. The Servojet electro-hydraulic, accumulator type fuel system was chosen for the pilot fuel injection. An alternative pilot FIS based on the “water hammer” (WH) effect was also considered. The modifications to a stock 17 min injector is described. Three different types of pilot injector nozzle were investigated: standard Valve Covered Orifice (VCO), modified minisac and new designed, unthrottled pintle. Preliminary results from engine tests proved that the optimum pilot fuel quantity is the minimum quantity. Based on that finding, the pilot FIS design was further optimized.