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Technical Paper

Model-Based Control and Cylinder-Event-Based Logic for an Ultra-Low Emissions Vehicle

Improvements in several areas are required to convert current technology light-duty vehicles into low-emissions vehicles suitable for meeting California's Ultra-Low Emissions Vehicle (ULEV) standards. This paper discusses one of those areas, the engine and aftertreatment control system algorithms. The approach was to use model-based air and fuel flow calculations to maintain accurate air-fuel ratio control, and to interface the aftertreatment requirements with engine air-fuel ratio control during the cold- and hot-start parts of the cycle. This approach was applied to a 1993 Ford Taurus operating on Ed85 (85% denatured alcohol, 15% gasoline).
Technical Paper

Performance of Different Cell Structure Converters A Total Systems Perspective

The objective of this effort was to develop an understanding of how different converter substrate cell structures impact tailpipe emissions and pressure drop from a total systems perspective. The cell structures studied were the following: The catalyst technologies utilized were a new technology palladium only catalyst in combination with a palladium/rhodium catalyst. A 4.0-liter, 1997 Jeep Cherokee with a modified calibration was chosen as the test platform for performing the FTP test. The experimental design focused on quantifying emissions performance as a function of converter volume for the different cell structures. The results from this study demonstrate that the 93 square cell/cm2 structure has superior performance versus the 62 square cell/cm2 structure and the 46 triangle cell/cm2 structure when the converter volumes were relatively small. However, as converter volume increases the emissions differences diminish.
Technical Paper

Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition of Diesel Fuel

A single-cylinder, direct-injection diesel engine was modified to operate on compression ignition of homogenous mixtures of diesel fuel and air. Previous work has indicated that extremely low emissions and high efficiencies are possible if ignition of homogeneous fuel-air mixtures is accomplished. The limitations of this approach were reported to be misfire and knock. These same observations were verified in the current work. The variables examined in this study included air-fuel ratio, compression ratio, fresh intake air temperature, exhaust gas recirculation rate, and intake mixture temperatures. The results suggested that controlled homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI) is possible. Compression ratio, EGR rate, and air fuel ratio are the practical controlling factors in achieving satisfactory operation. It was found that satisfactory power settings are possible with high EGR rates and stoichiometric fuel-air mixtures.
Technical Paper

Engine and Constant Volume Bomb Studies of Diesel ignition and Combustion

Changing fuel quality, increasingly stringent exhaust emission standards, demands for higher efficiency, and the trend towards higher specific output, all contribute to the need for a better understanding of the ignition process in diesel engines. In addition to the impact on the combustion process and the resulting performance and emissions, the ignition process controls the startability of the engine, which, in turn, governs the required compressions ratio and several of the other engine design parameters. The importance of the ignition process is reflected in the fact that the only combustion property that is specified for diesel fuel is the ignition delay time as indicated by the cetane number. The objective of the work described in this paper was to determine the relationship between the ignition process as it occurs in an actual engine, to ignition in a constant volume combustion bomb.
Technical Paper

Development of a Heavy Duty On-Highway Natural Gas-Fueled Engine

A heavy-duty 320 kW diesel engine has been converted to natural gas operation. Conversion technology was selected to minimize costs while reaching NOx emissions goals of less than 3.2 g/kW-hr. Two engines are being converted using quiescent and high swirl combustion systems. The first engine with low swirl cylinder heads of the base diesel engine, and a combustion system developed for it was tested on a steady state cycle that has been shown to simulate the US heavy duty transient test cycle. It shows NOx emissions of 2.9 g/kW-hr and total HC emissions of 5.4 g/kW-hr. It is suspected that the HC emission is high because of high valve overlap. Experience with other similar engines suggests that non-methane HC emission is about 0.4-0.8 g/kW-hr. It is also expected that modified valve events and/or an oxidation catalyst can reduce HC emissions to much lower levels. The efficiency of the low swirl natural gas engine at this NOx level is 36 percent at rated condition.
Technical Paper

Achieving Fast Catalyst Light-Off from a Heavy-Duty Stoichiometric Natural Gas Engine Capable of 0.02 g/bhp-hr NOX Emissions

Recently conducted work has been funded by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) to explore the feasibility of achieving 0.02 g/bhp-hr NOX emissions for heavy-duty on-road engines. In addition to NOX emissions, greenhouse gas (GHG), CO2 and methane emissions regulations from heavy-duty engines are also becoming more stringent. To achieve low cold-start NOX and methane emissions, the exhaust aftertreatment must be brought up to temperature quickly while keeping proper air-fuel ratio control; however, a balance between catalyst light-off and fuel penalty must be addressed to meet future CO2 emissions regulations. This paper details the work executed to improve catalyst light-off for a natural gas engine with a close-coupled and an underfloor three-way-catalyst while meeting an FTP NOX emission target of 0.02 g/bhp-hr and minimizing any fuel penalty.
Technical Paper

Improved Military Standard Piston Rings for Industrial Gasoline Engines

This paper discusses the experimental work that produced a revised military standard piston ring (conformable steel-rail oil control ring) with improved oil consumption and wear characteristics. The testing of these parameters was accelerated by the use of radio-tracer techniques. The effects of variables such as engine speed, load, jacket temperature, air-fuel ratio, intermittent starts and stops, and cyclic load operation is described. Performance characteristics of the present standard and experimental piston rings are included.
Technical Paper

Correlation of Air Fuel Ratio with Ionization Signal Metrics in a Multicylinder Spark Ignited Engine

Accurate individual cylinder Air Fuel Ratio (AFR) feedback provide opportunities for improved engine performance and reduced emissions in spark ignition engines. One potential measurement for individual cylinder AFR is in-cylinder ionization measured by employing the spark plug as a sensor. A number of previous investigations have studied correlations of the ionization signal with AFR and shown promising results. However the studies have typically been limited to single cylinders under restricted operating conditions. This investigation analyzes and characterizes the ionization signals in correlation to individual AFR values obtained from wide-band electrochemical oxygen sensors located in the exhaust runners of each cylinder. Experimental studies for this research were conducted on a 2.0L inline 4 cylinder spark ignited engine with dual independent variable cam phasing and an intake charge motion control valve.
Technical Paper

Carbureted SI Engine Air Flow Measurements

Measurement of internal combustion engine air flow is challenging due to the required modification of the intake system and subsequent change in the air flow pattern. In this paper, various surge tank volumes were investigated to improve the accuracy of measuring air flow rate into a 674-cm3, four-stroke, liquid-cooled, internal combustion engine. According to the experimental results, when the venturi meter is used to measure the intake air flow rate, an air surge tank is required to be installed downstream of the venturi to smoothen the air flow. Moreover, test results revealed that increasing air surge tank volume beyond a limit could have a negative effect on the engine performance parameters especially in carbureted engines where controlling AFR is difficult. Although the air flow rate into the engine changed with increasing tank volume, the air-fuel ratio was leaner for smaller tank volumes.
Technical Paper

Spark Ignited Direct Injection Natural Gas Combustion in a Heavy Duty Single Cylinder Test Engine - AFR and EGR Dilution Effects

The increased availability of natural gas (NG) in the United States (US) and its relatively low cost compared to diesel fuel has heightened interest in the conversion of medium duty (MD) and heavy duty (HD) engines to NG fueled combustion systems. The aim for development for these NG engines is to realize fuel cost savings and reduce harmful emissions while maintaining durability. Transforming part of the vehicle fleet to NG is a path to reduce dependence on crude oil. Traditionally, port-fuel injection (PFI) or premixed NG spark-ignited (SI) combustion systems have been used for MD and HD engines with widespread use in the US and Europe. But this technology exhibits poor cycle efficiency and is load limited due to knock phenomenon. Direct Injection of NG during the compression stroke promises to deliver improved thermal efficiency by avoiding excessive premixing and extending the lean limits which helps to extend the knock limit.
Technical Paper

Design for 6 Sigma Application in Engine System Integration

With stringent emission regulations, many subsystems that abate engine tailpipe-out emissions become a necessary part for engines. The increased level of complexity poses technical challenges for the quality and reliability for modern engines. Among the spectrum of quality control methodologies, one conventional methodology focuses on every component's quality to ensure that the accumulative deviation is within predetermined limits. This conventional methodology tightens the component tolerance during the manufacturing process and typically results in increased cost. Another conventional methodology that is on the other side of the spectrum focuses on tailoring an engine calibration solution to offset the manufacturing differences. Although the tailored engine calibration solution reduces manufacturing cost for components, it increases the development and validation cost for engines. Given the cost and time constraints, system integration plays an important role in engine development.
Technical Paper

A High-Energy Continuous Discharge Ignition System for Dilute Engine Applications

SwRI has developed the DCO® ignition system, a unique continuous discharge system that allows for variable duration/energy events in SI engines. The system uses two coils connected by a diode and a multi-striking controller to generate a continuous current flow through the spark plug of variable duration. A previous publication demonstrated the ability of the DCO system to improve EGR tolerance using low energy coils. In this publication, the work is extended to high current (≻ 300 mA/high energy (≻ 200 mJ) coils and compared to several advanced ignition systems. The results from a 4-cylinder, MPI application demonstrate that the higher current/higher energy coils offer an improvement over the lower energy coils. The engine was tested at a variety of speed and load conditions operating at stoichiometric air-fuel ratios with gasoline and EGR dilution.
Technical Paper

Spark Ignited Direct Injection Natural Gas Combustion in a Heavy Duty Single Cylinder Test Engine - Nozzle Included Angle Effects

The increased availability of natural gas (NG) in the United States (US) and its relatively low cost versus diesel fuel has increased interest in the conversion of medium duty (MD) and heavy duty (HD) engines to NG fueled combustion systems. The aim for development for these NG engines is to realize fuel cost savings and increase operating range while reduce harmful emissions and maintaining durability. Traditionally, port-fuel injection (PFI) or premixed NG spark-ignited (SI) combustion systems have been used for light duty LD, and MD engines with widespread use in the US and Europe [1]. However, this technology exhibits poor thermal efficiency and is load limited due to knock phenomenon that has prohibited its use for HD engines. Spark Ignited Direct Injection (SIDI) can be used to create a partially stratified combustion (PSC) mixture of NG and air during the compression stroke.
Technical Paper

Air Charge and Residual Gas Fraction Estimation for a Spark-Ignition Engine Using In-Cylinder Pressure

An accurate estimation of cycle-by-cycle in-cylinder mass and the composition of the cylinder charge is required for spark-ignition engine transient control strategies to obtain required torque, Air-Fuel-Ratio (AFR) and meet engine pollution regulations. Mass Air Flow (MAF) and Manifold Absolute Pressure (MAP) sensors have been utilized in different control strategies to achieve these targets; however, these sensors have response delay in transients. As an alternative to air flow metering, in-cylinder pressure sensors can be utilized to directly measure cylinder pressure, based on which, the amount of air charge can be estimated without the requirement to model the dynamics of the manifold.
Technical Paper

Achieving 0.02 g/bhp-hr NOx Emissions from a Heavy-Duty Stoichiometric Natural Gas Engine Equipped with Three-Way Catalyst

It is projected that even when the entire on-road fleet of heavy-duty vehicles operating in California is compliant with 2010 emission standards of 0.20 g/bhp-hr, the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) requirements for ambient ozone will not be met. It is expected that further reductions in NOX emissions from the heavy-duty fleet will be required to achieve compliance with the ambient ozone requirement. To study the feasibility of further reductions, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) funded a research program to demonstrate the potential to reach 0.02 g/bhp-hr NOX emissions. This paper details the work executed to achieve this goal on the heavy-duty Federal Test Procedure (FTP) with a heavy-duty natural gas engine equipped with a three-way catalyst. A Cummins ISX-12G natural gas engine was modified and coupled with an advanced catalyst system.
Technical Paper

US 2010 Emissions Capable Camless Heavy-Duty On-Highway Natural Gas Engine

The goal of this project was to demonstrate a low emissions, high efficiency heavy-duty on-highway natural gas engine. The emissions targets for this project are to demonstrate US 2010 emissions standards on the 13-mode steady state test. To meet this goal, a chemically correct combustion (stoichiometric) natural gas engine with exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) and a three way catalyst (TWC) was developed. In addition, a Sturman Industries, Inc. camless Hydraulic Valve Actuation (HVA) system was used to improve efficiency. A Volvo 11 liter diesel engine was converted to operate as a stoichiometric natural gas engine. Operating a natural gas engine with stoichiometric combustion allows for the effective use of a TWC, which can simultaneously oxidize hydrocarbons and carbon monoxide and reduce NOx. High conversion efficiencies are possible through proper control of air-fuel ratio.
Technical Paper

Investigation of Alternative Combustion Crossing Stoichiometric Air Fuel Ratio for Clean Diesels

Alternative combustion crossing stoichiometric air fuel ratio was investigated to utilize a 4-way catalyst system with LNT (lean NOx trap). The chemical mechanism of restricting soot formation reactions with low combustion temperature was combined with the physical mechanism of reducing smoke by lowering local equivalence ratio to enable low smoke rich and near rich combustion. A new combustion chamber for spatially and timely mixture formation phasing was developed to combine the two mechanisms and allow smooth EGR changing over a wide load range. Through this investigation, rich and near rich combustion to effectively utilize a 4-way catalyst system was realized. In addition, conditions suitable for LNT sulfur regeneration were realized from light to medium load.
Technical Paper


An airflow-dominant control system was developed to provide precise engine and exhaust treatment control with low air fuel ratio alternative combustion. The main elements of the control logic include a real-time state observer for in-cylinder oxygen mass estimation, a simplified packaging scheme for all air-handling and fueling parameters, a finite state machine for control mode switching, combustion control models to maintain robust alternative combustion during transients, and smooth rich/lean switching during lean NOx trap (LNT) regeneration without post injection. The control logic was evaluated on a passenger car equipped with a 4-way catalyst system with LNT and was instrumental in achieving US Tier II Bin 5 emission targets with good drivability and low NVH.
Technical Paper

HCCI in a Variable Compression Ratio Engine-Effects of Engine Variables

Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) experiments were performed in a variable compression ratio single cylinder engine. This is the fourth paper resulting from work performed at Southwest Research Institute in this HCCI engine. The experimental variables, in addition to speed and load, included compression ratio, EGR level, intake manifold pressure and temperature, fuel introduction location, and fuel composition. Mixture preparation and start of reaction control were identified as fundamental problems that required non-traditional mixture preparation and control strategies. The effects of the independent variable on the start of reaction have been documented. For fuels that display significant pre-flame reactions, the start of the pre-flame reactions is controlled primarily by the selection of the fuel and the temperature history of the fuel air mixture.
Technical Paper

FTP and US06 Performance of Advanced High Cell Density Metallic Substrates as a Function of Varying Air/Fuel Modulation

The influence of catalyst volume, cell density and precious metal loading on the catalyst efficiency were investigated to design a low cost catalyst system. In a first experiment the specific loading was kept constant for a 500cpsi and a 900cpsi substrate. In a second experiment the palladium loading was reduced on the 900cpsi substrate and the same PM loading was applied to a 1200cpsi substrate with lower volume. Finally the loading was further reduced for the 1200cpsi substrate. The following parameters were studied after aging: Catalyst performance of standard cell density compared to high cell density technology Light-off performance and catalyst efficiency as a function of Palladium loading and substrate cell density Catalyst efficiency as a function of AFR biasing The performance of the aged catalysts was investigated in a lambda sweep test and in light-off tests at an engine bench.