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Technical Paper

In-Cylinder Oxygen Mass Fraction Estimation Method for Minimizing Cylinder-to-Cylinder Variations

Recent developments in advanced combustion engines have demonstrated the potential increases in efficiency and reductions in emissions through low temperature combustion (LTC). These combustion modes often rely on high exhaust gas recirculation (EGR), early fuel injection systems, and in some cases a combination of fuels with different reactivities. Despite the advantages of LTC, such operations are highly sensitive to the in-cylinder pre-combustion conditions and face significant challenges in multi-cylinder operation due to cylinder-to-cylinder variations of the combustion process. The cause of cylinder-to-cylinder variations is strongly tied to non-uniform trapped mass. In particular, in-cylinder oxygen concentration plays a critical role in the combustion process of each cylinder and can be leveraged to predict combustion characteristics and to develop control algorithms that mitigate cylinder-to-cylinder variation.
Technical Paper

Blend Ratio Optimization of Fuels Containing Gasoline Blendstock, Ethanol, and Higher Alcohols (C3-C6): Part II - Blend Properties and Target Value Sensitivity

Higher carbon number alcohols offer an opportunity to meet the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS2) and improve the energy content, petroleum displacement, and/or knock resistance of gasoline-alcohol blends from traditional ethanol blends such as E10 while maintaining desired and regulated fuel properties. Part II of this paper builds upon the alcohol selection, fuel implementation scenarios, criteria target values, and property prediction methodologies detailed in Part I. For each scenario, optimization schemes include maximizing energy content, knock resistance, or petroleum displacement. Optimum blend composition is very sensitive to energy content, knock resistance, vapor pressure, and oxygen content criteria target values. Iso-propanol is favored in both scenarios' suitable blends because of its high RON value.
Technical Paper

Blend Ratio Optimization of Fuels Containing Gasoline Blendstock, Ethanol, and Higher Alcohols (C3-C6): Part I - Methodology and Scenario Definition

The U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS2) requires an increase in the use of advanced biofuels up to 36 billion gallons by 2022. Longer chain alcohols, in addition to cellulosic ethanol and synthetic biofuels, could be used to meet this demand while adhering to the RFS2 corn-based ethanol limitation. Higher carbon number alcohols can be utilized to improve the energy content, knock resistance, and/or petroleum displacement of gasoline-alcohol blends compared to traditional ethanol blends such as E10 while maintaining desired and regulated fuel properties. Part I of this paper focuses on the development of scenarios by which to compare higher alcohol fuel blends to traditional ethanol blends. It also details the implementation of fuel property prediction methods adapted from literature. Possible combinations of eight alcohols mixed with a gasoline blendstock were calculated and the properties of the theoretical fuel blends were predicted.
Technical Paper

Feedforward Control of Fuel Distribution on Advanced Dual-Fuel Engines with Varying Intake Valve Closing Timings

This study examines the dynamics and control of an engine operated with late intake valve closure (LIVC) timings in a dual-fuel combustion mode. The engine features a fuel delivery system in which diesel is direct-injected and natural gas is port-injected. Despite the benefits of LIVC and dual-fuel strategy, combining these two techniques resulted in efficiency losses due to the variability of the combustion process across cylinders. The difference in power production across cylinders ranges from 9% at an IVC of 570°ATDC* to 38% at an IVC of 620 °ATDC and indicates an increasingly uneven fuel distribution as the intake valve remains open longer in the compression stroke. This paper describes an approach for controlling the amount of fuel injected into each cylinders’ port of an inline six- cylinder heavy-duty dual-fuel engine to minimize the variations in fuel distribution across cylinder.
Journal Article

Meeting RFS2 Targets with an E10/E15-like Fuel - Experimental and Analytical Assessment of Higher Alcohols in Multi-component Blends with Gasoline

This paper evaluates the potential of adding higher alcohols to gasoline blendstock in an attempt to improve overall fuel performance. The alcohols considered include ethanol, normal- and iso-structures of propanol, butanol and pentanol as well as normal-hexanol (C2-C6). Fuel performance is quantified based on energy content, knock resistance as well as petroleum displacement and promising multi-component blends are systematically identified based on property prediction methods. These promising multi-component blends, as well as their respective reference fuels, are subsequently tested for efficiency and emissions performance utilizing a gasoline direct injection, spark ignition engine. The engine test results confirm that combustion and efficiency of tailored multi-component blends closely match those of the reference fuels. Regulated emissions stemming from combustion of these blends are equal or lower compared to the reference fuels across the tested engine speed and load regime.
Journal Article

Cylinder-to-Cylinder Variations in Power Production in a Dual Fuel Internal Combustion Engine Leveraging Late Intake Valve Closings

Advanced internal combustion engines, although generally more efficient than conventional combustion engines, often encounter limitations in multi-cylinder applications due to variations in the combustion process. This study leverages experimental data from an inline 6-cylinder heavy-duty dual fuel engine equipped with a fully-flexible variable intake valve actuation system to study cylinder-to-cylinder variations in power production. The engine is operated with late intake valve closure timings in a dual-fuel combustion mode featuring a port-injection and a direct-injection fueling system in order to improve fuel efficiency and engine performance. Experimental results show increased cylinder-to-cylinder variation in IMEP as IVC timing moves from 570°ATDC to 610°ATDC, indicating an increasingly uneven fuel distribution between cylinders.