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Technical Paper

Analysis of a Hybrid Powertrain for Heavy Duty Trucks

Heavy duty trucks account for about 50 percent of the NOx burden in urban areas and consume about 20 percent of the national transportation fuel in the United States. There is a continuing need to reduce emissions and fuel consumption. Much of the focus of current work is on engine development as a stand-alone subsystem. While this has yielded impressive gains so far, further improvement in emissions or engine efficiency is unlikely in a cost effective manner. Consequently, an integrated approach looking at the whole powertrain is required. A computer model of the heavy duty truck system was built and evaluated. The model includes both conventional and hybrid powertrains. It uses a series of interacting sub-models for the vehicle, transmission, engine, exhaust aftertreatment and braking energy recovery/storage devices. A specified driving cycle is used to calculate the power requirements at the wheels and energy flow and inefficiencies throughout the drivetrain.
Technical Paper

The Influence of Pneumatic Atomization on the Lean Limit and IMEP

Lean limit characteristics of a pneumatic port fuel injection system is compared to a conventional port fuel injection system. The lean limit was based on the measured peak pressure. Those cycles with peak pressures greater than 105 % of the peak pressure for a nonfiring cycle were counted. Experimental data suggests that there are differences in lean limit characteristics between the two systems studied, indicating that fuel preparation processes in these systems influence the lean limit behaviors. Lean limits are generally richer for pneumatic fuel injection than those for conventional fuel injection. At richer fuel-to-air ratios the pneumatic injector usually resulted in higher torques. A simple model to estimate the evaporation occurring in the inlet manifold provided an explanation for the observed data.
Technical Paper

Novel Approach to Integration of Turbocompounding, Electrification and Supercharging Through Use of Planetary Gear System

Technologies that provide potential for significant improvements in engine efficiency include, engine downsizing/downspeeding (enabled by advanced boosting systems such as an electrically driven compressor), waste heat recovery through turbocompounding or organic Rankine cycle and 48 V mild hybridization. FEV’s Integrated Turbocompounding/Waste Heat Recovery (WHR), Electrification and Supercharging (FEV-ITES) is a novel approach for integration of these technologies in a single unit. This approach provides a reduced cost, reduced space claim and an increase in engine efficiency, when compared to the independent integration of each of these technologies. This approach is enabled through the application of a planetary gear system. Specifically, a secondary compressor is connected to the ring gear, a turbocompounding turbine or organic Rankine cycle (ORC) expander is connected to the sun gear, and an electric motor/generator is connected to the carrier gear.
Technical Paper

Identifying Limiters to Low Temperature Catalyst Activity

The drive to more fuel efficient vehicles is underway, with passenger car targets of 54.5 mpg fleet average by 2025. Improving engine efficiency means reducing losses such as the heat lost in the exhaust gases. However, reducing exhaust temperature makes it harder for emissions control catalysts to function because they require elevated temperatures to be active. Addressing this conundrum was the focus of the work performed. The primary objective of this work was to identify low temperature limiters for a variety of catalyst aftertreatment types. The ultimate goal is to reduce catalyst light-off temperatures, and the knowledge needed is an understanding of what prevents a catalyst from lighting off, why, and how it may be mitigated. Collectively these are referred to here as low temperature limiters to catalyst activity.
Technical Paper

Influence of Water Injection on Performance and Emissions of a Direct-Injection Hydrogen Research Engine

The application of hydrogen (H2) as an internal combustion (IC) engine fuel has been under investigation for several decades. The favorable physical properties of hydrogen make it an excellent alternative fuel for IC engines and hence it is widely regarded as the energy carrier of the future. Direct injection of hydrogen allows optimizing this potential as it provides multiple degrees of freedom to influence the in-cylinder combustion processes and consequently engine efficiency and exhaust emissions. At certain operating conditions the stratification associated with hydrogen direct injection (DI) leads to an efficiency improvement. However, it also results in higher emissions levels. This paper examines the effects of combining an advanced direct injection strategy with water injection for efficiency benefits and emissions reduction of a hydrogen fuelled DI spark ignition (SI) engine.
Technical Paper

Impact of EGR on Combustion Processes in a Hydrogen Fuelled SI Engine

With concerns continuing to grow with respect to global warming from greenhouse gases, further regulations are being examined, developed and are expected for the emission of CO2 as an automobile exhaust. Renewable alternate fuels offer the potential to significantly reduce the CO2 impact of transportation. Hydrogen as a spark - ignition (SI) engine fuel provides this potential for significant CO2 reduction when generated from renewable resources. In addition, hydrogen has advantageous combustion properties including a wide flammable mixture range which facilitates lean burning and high dilution, fast combustion energy release and zero CO2 emissions. However, the high burning rates and fast energy release can lead to excessive in-cylinder pressures and temperatures resulting in combustion knock and high NOx emissions at stoichiometric operation.
Technical Paper

Efficiency and Emissions Characteristics of Partially Premixed Dual-Fuel Combustion by Co-Direct Injection of NG and Diesel Fuel (DI2)

For the US market, an abundant supply of natural gas (NG) coupled with recent green-house gas (GHG) regulations have spurred renewed interest in dual-fuel combustion regimes. This paper explores the potential of co-direct injection to improve the efficiency and reduce the methane emissions versus equivalent fumigated dual-fuel combustion systems. Using the Westport HPDI engine as the experimental test platform, the paper reports the results obtained using both diffusion controlled (HPDI) combustion strategy as well as a partially-premixed combustion strategy (DI2). The DI2 combustion strategy shows good promise, as it has been found to improve the engine efficiency by over two brake thermal efficiency (BTE) points (% fuel energy) compared to the diffusion controlled combustion strategy (HPDI) while at the same time reducing the engine-out methane emissions by 75% compared to an equivalent fumigated dual-fuel combustion system.
Technical Paper

Ruthenium-Based Catalyst in EGR Leg of a D-EGR Engine Offers Combustion Improvements Through Selective NOX Removal

A recent collaborative research project between Southwest Research Institute® (SwRI®) and the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) has demonstrated that a ruthenium (Ru) catalyst is capable of converting oxides of nitrogen (NOX) emissions to nitrogen (N2) with high activity and selectivity. Testing was performed on coated cordierite ceramic cores using SwRI’s Universal Synthetic Gas Reactor® (USGR®). Various gas mixtures were employed, from model gas mixes to full exhaust simulant gas mixes. Activity was measured as a function of temperature, and gaseous inhibitors and promoters were identified. Different Ru supports were tested to identify ones with lowest temperature activity. A Ru catalyst can be used in the exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) leg of a Dedicated-EGR (D-EGR) engine [1,2], where it uses carbon monoxide (CO) and hydrogen (H2) present in the rich gas environment to reduce NOX to N2 with 100% efficiency and close to 100% selectivity to N2.
Technical Paper

Selective Interrupt and Control: An Open ECU Alternative

To enable the evaluation of off-calibration powertrain operation, a selective interrupt and control (SIC) test capability was developed as part of an EPA evaluation of a 1.6 L EcoBoost® engine. A control and data acquisition device sits between the stock powertrain controller and the engine; the device selectively passes through or modifies control signals while also simulating feedback signals. This paper describes the development process of SIC that enabled a test engineer to command off-calibration setpoints for intake and exhaust cam phasing as well as ignition timing without the need for an open ECU duplicating the stock calibration. Results are presented demonstrating the impact of ignition timing and cam phasing on engine efficiency. When coupled with combustion analysis and crank-domain data acquisition, this test configuration provides a complete picture of powertrain performance.
Technical Paper

Electric Air Conditioning for Class 8 Tractors

Air conditioning and heating of heavy-duty truck cabs is an important contributor to engine efficiency, fuel economy and driver comfort. The air conditioner condenser coil and engine radiator typically share a common cooling fan, making it necessary to run the large engine cooling fan to provide condenser cooling. Engagement of the radiator cooling fan consumes a large amount of energy, further contributing to engine exhaust and noise emissions. Even under moderate temperature conditions, when the conventional engine-driven air conditioning compressor is not in use, the belt drive system adds a small speed-dependent parasitic load to the engine. Electrically driven air conditioning systems have the potential for lower energy consumption than their mechanical counterparts: Electrically driven air conditioning systems can reduce engine idle time by decoupling the air conditioner system from the engine cooling fan while offering near zero parasitic load when not in use.
Technical Paper

Electrification and Integration of Accessories on a Class-8 Tractor

This paper describes installation and testing of electrified engine accessories and fuel cell auxiliary power units for a Class-8 tractor. A 2.4 kW fuel cell APU (Auxiliary Power Unit) has been added to supply a 42 V power supply for electrification of air conditioning and water pump systems. A 42/12 V dual alternator was used to replace the OEM alternator to provide safety back-up in case of fuel cell failure. A QNX Real Time Operating System-based (RTOS) Rapid Prototype Electronic Control System (RPECS™), developed by Southwest Research Institute (SwRI™), is used for supervisory control and coordination between accessories and engine. A Controller Area Network (CAN) interface, from the engine Electronic Control Unit (ECU), and the RS232 interface, from the fuel cell controllers, provide system data and control for RPECS. Custom wiring to the hydrogen, water pump, and air conditioning systems also provide data to RPECS. The water pump system controller is autonomous.
Journal Article

Effects of EGR Dilution and Fuels on Spark Plug Temperatures in Gasoline Engines

The addition of exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) has demonstrated the potential to significantly improve engine efficiency by allowing high CR operation due to a reduction in knock tendency, heat transfer, and pumping losses. In addition, EGR also reduces the engine-out emission of nitrogen oxides, particulates, and carbon monoxide while further improving efficiency at stoichiometric air/fuel ratios. However, improvements in efficiency through enhanced combustion phasing at high compression ratios can result in a significant increase in cylinder pressure. As cylinder pressure and temperature are both important parameters for estimating the durability requirements of the engine - in effect specifying the material and engineering required for the head and block - the impact of EGR on surface temperatures, when combined with the cylinder pressure data, will provide an important understanding of the design requirements for future cylinder heads.
Journal Article

Lubricant Reactivity Effects on Gasoline Spark Ignition Engine Knock

The performance and efficiency of spark ignited gasoline engines is often limited by end-gas knock. In particular, when operating the engine at high loads, combustion phasing is retarded to prevent knock, resulting in a significant reduction of engine efficiency. Since the invention of the spark ignition (SI) engine, much work has been devoted to improve and regulate fuel characteristics, such as octane number, to suppress engine knock. The auto-ignition tendency of the engine lubricant however, as described by cetane number (CN), has received little attention, as it has been assumed that engine lubricant effects on knock are insignificant, primarily due to low levels of average oil consumption. However, with modern SI engines being developed to operate at higher loads and closer to knock limits, the reactivity of engine lubricants can impact the knock behavior.
Journal Article

LPL EGR and D-EGR® Engine Concept Comparison Part 2: High Load Operation

The ongoing pursuit of improved engine efficiency and emissions is driving gasoline low-pressure loop EGR systems into production around the globe. The Dedicated EGR (D-EGR®) engine was developed to minimize some of the challenges of cooled EGR while maintaining its advantages. The D-EGR engine is a high efficiency, low emissions internal combustion engine for automotive and off-highway applications. The core of the engine development focused on a unique concept that combines the efficiency improvements associated with recirculated exhaust gas and the efficiency improvements associated with fuel reformation. To outline the differences of the new engine concept with a conventional LPL EGR setup, a turbocharged 2.0 L PFI engine was modified to operate in both modes. The second part of the cooled EGR engine concept comparison investigates efficiency, knock resistance, combustion stability, and maximum load potential at high load conditions.
Journal Article

Potential and Challenges for a Water-Gas-Shift Catalyst as a Combustion Promoter on a D-EGR® Engine

In light of the increasingly stringent efficiency and emissions requirements, several new engine technologies are currently under investigation. One of these new concepts is the Dedicated EGR (D-EGR®) engine. The concept utilizes fuel reforming and high levels of recirculated exhaust gas (EGR) to achieve very high levels of thermal efficiency. While the positive impact of reformate, in particular hydrogen, on gasoline engine performance has been widely documented, the on-board reforming process and / or storage of H2 remains challenging. The Water-Gas-Shift (WGS) reaction is well known and has been used successfully for many years in the industry to produce hydrogen from the reactants water vapor and carbon monoxide. For this study, prototype WGS catalysts were installed in the exhaust tract of the dedicated cylinder of a turbocharged 2.0 L in-line four cylinder MPI engine. The potential of increased H2 production in a D-EGR engine was evaluated through the use of these catalysts.
Journal Article

Engine Operating Condition and Gasoline Fuel Composition Effects on Low-Speed Pre-Ignition in High-Performance Spark Ignited Gasoline Engines

Downsizing is an important concept to reduce fuel consumption as well as emissions of spark ignition engines. Engine displacement is reduced in order to shift operating points from lower part load into regions of the operating map with higher efficiency and thus lower specific fuel consumption [ 1 ]. Since maximum power in full load operation decreases due to the reduction of displacement, engines are boosted (turbocharging or supercharging), which leads to a higher specific loading of the engines. Hence, a new combustion phenomenon has been observed at high loads and low engine speed and is referred to as Low-Speed Pre-Ignition or LSPI. In cycles with LSPI, the air/fuel mixture is ignited prior to the spark which results in the initial flame propagation quickly transforming into heavy engine knock. Very high pressure rise rates and peak cylinder pressures could exceed design pressure limits, which in turn could lead to degradation of the engine.
Journal Article

Assessment of Multiple Injection Strategies in a Direct-Injection Hydrogen Research Engine

Hydrogen is widely considered a promising fuel for future transportation applications for both, internal combustion engines and fuel cells. Due to their advanced stage of development and immediate availability hydrogen combustion engines could act as a bridging technology towards a wide-spread hydrogen infrastructure. Although fuel cell vehicles are expected to surpass hydrogen combustion engine vehicles in terms of efficiency, the difference in efficiency might not be as significant as widely anticipated [1]. Hydrogen combustion engines have been shown capable of achieving efficiencies of up to 45 % [2]. One of the remaining challenges is the reduction of nitric oxide emissions while achieving peak engine efficiencies. This paper summarizes research work performed on a single-cylinder hydrogen direct injection engine at Argonne National Laboratory.
Journal Article

Study of Basic Injection Configurations using a Direct-Injection Hydrogen Research Engine

The application of hydrogen (H2) as an internal combustion (IC) engine fuel has been under investigation for several decades. The favorable physical properties of hydrogen make it an excellent alternative fuel for fuel cells as well as IC engines and hence it is widely regarded as the energy carrier of the future. The potential of hydrogen as an IC engine fuel can be optimized by direct injection (DI) as it provides multiple degrees of freedom to influence the in-cylinder combustion processes and consequently the engine efficiency and exhaust emissions. This paper studies a single-hole nozzle and examines the effects of injection strategy on engine efficiency, combustion behavior and NOx emissions. The experiments for this study are done on a 0.5 liter single-cylinder research engine which is specifically designed for combustion studies and equipped with a cylinder head that allows side as well as central injector location.
Journal Article

A Demonstration of Dedicated EGR on a 2.0 L GDI Engine

Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) converted a 2012 Buick Regal GS to use an engine with Dedicated EGR™ (D-EGR™). D-EGR is an engine concept that uses fuel reforming and high levels of recirculated exhaust gas (EGR) to achieve very high levels of thermal efficiency [1]. To accomplish reformation of the gasoline in a cost-effective, energy efficient manner, a dedicated cylinder is used for both the production of EGR and reformate. By operating the engine in this manner, many of the sources of losses from traditional reforming technology are eliminated and the engine can take full advantage of the benefits of reformate. The engine in the vehicle was modified to add the following components: the dedicated EGR loop, an additional injector for delivering extra fuel for reformation, a modified boost system that included a supercharger, high energy dual coil offset (DCO) ignition and other actuators used to enable the control of D-EGR combustion.
Technical Paper

Methods of Improving Combustion Efficiency in a High-Efficiency, Lean Burn Dual-Fuel Heavy-Duty Engine

Combustion losses are one of the largest areas on inefficiency in natural gas/diesel dual-fuel engines, especially when compared to the traditional diesel engines on which they are based. These losses can vary from 1-2% at high load, to more than 6% of the total fuel energy at part load conditions. For diesel/natural gas dual-fuel engines, the three main sources of combustion losses are: bulk losses (increasing air-fuel ratio, AFR, to the premixed fuel’s lean flammability limit), crevice losses (premixed fuel trapped near valve pockets and top ring lands unable to oxidize), and blow-through losses (fumigated fuel/air intake charge passes through the cylinder and out the exhaust valve during valve overlap). In order to improve overall engine efficiency and decrease greenhouse gas emissions, these losses must be minimized.