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Technical Paper

Toothed Couplings for Diesel Engines: An Example of Steel Substitution With Fiber Reinforced Plastics

The replacement with plastic of an important component, formerly in steel, in the timing drive of a heavily duty diesel engine has been studied and realized. The substituted part is the toothed coupling connecting the injection pump to the timing drive. Torque that stresses the coupling has been measured with laboratory tests. The tooth stresses have been calculated with FEM analysis. Finally, fatigue tests have been carried out directly on the engine at different loadings. The test results are consistent with the predicted behavior of this component.
Technical Paper

Crash Performance of Rtm Composites for Automotive Applications

This paper describes the experimental activity carried out at Aerospace Engineering Department of Politecnico di Milano about energy absorption capability of glass-epoxy RTM specimens, representative of automotive crash front structure sub-components. After the analysis of some automotive crashworthiness aspects, especially relevant to the structural adoption of composite materials, the specimen used and the technological route to produce them are described. Then experimental arrangements, test procedure and measurement technique, relevant to static and crash test are presented. Finally test results, reported in the form of numerical values, diagrams and high-velocity films are shown and critically commented.
Technical Paper

Multi-Dimensional Modeling of Gas Exchange and Fuel-Air Mixing Processes in a Direct-Injection, Gas Fueled Engine

Direct-injection technology represents today a very interesting solution to the typical problems that are generally encountered in SI, gas-fueled engines such as reduced volumetric efficiency, backfire and knock. However, development of suitable injection systems and combustion chamber geometry is necessary to optimize the fuel-air mixing and combustion processes. To this end, CFD models are widely applied even if the influence of the mesh structure, numerical and turbulence models on the computed results are still matter of investigation. In this work, a numerical methodology for the simulation of the gas exchange and injection processes in gas-fueled engines was developed within the Lib-ICE framework, which is a set of libraries and applications for IC engine modeling developed using the OpenFOAM® technology. The gas exchange and fuel injection processes were simulated into a four-valve, pent-roof hydrogen-fueled engine with optical access.
Technical Paper

Hybrid URANS/LES Turbulence Modeling for Spray Simulation: A Computational Study

Turbulence modeling for fuel spray simulation plays a prominent role in the understanding of the flow behavior in Internal Combustion Engines (ICEs). Currently, a lot of research work is actively spent on Large Eddy Simulation (LES) turbulence modeling as a replacement option of standard Reynolds averaged approaches in the Eulerian-Lagrangian spray modeling framework, due to its capability to accurately describe flow-induced spray variability and to the lower dependence of the results on the specific turbulence model and/or modeling coefficients. The introduction of LES poses, however, additional questions related to the implementation/adaptation of spray-related turbulence sources and to the rise of conflicting numerics and grid requirements between the Lagrangian and Eulerian parts of the simulated flow.
Technical Paper

Tempered Wire Fatigue Testing

A new bench for the rotating bending fatigue tests of tempered steel wires is presented. The new bench is used to check the spring wire just before it is finally winded to realize a spring. The bench is basically a four-point bending machine. There are two main differences with respect to current bending machines. The first one is that the focus is on semi-finished components (more than 1 meter long), rather than standard small-scale specimens. The second one is that there is a non-linear configuration of the tested component due to its length. The bench design has provided some unreferenced features that make the bench quite accurate and effective in producing quick fatigue assessments. A rotor-dynamic study has allowed to perform tests at 50 Hz. As a preliminary application, some fatigue bending tests of tempered steel wires are described and discussed.
Journal Article

Test Rig for Characterization of Automotive Suspension Systems

A test rig (named RuotaVia) is presented for the in-door testing of road vehicle suspension systems. It is basically a drum (ϕ 2.6 m) providing a running surface for testing the dynamic performance of a single tire or suspension system (corner). The suspension system is instrumented for the measurement of the forces and the moments acting at each joint connecting the suspension to the car body. A new 6 axis load cell was designed and manufactured for this purpose. The accelerations in various locations of the system (wheel carrier, suspension arms, …) and the wheel centre displacements in the longitudinal and vertical directions are monitored. The effect of the dynamic interaction between the test rig and the suspension system is discussed in the paper. The direct measurement of the forces and moments at the suspension-chassis joints is still an effective way for understanding the vibration and harshness (VH) suspension performances.
Technical Paper

Design and Evaluation of the ELEVATE Two-stroke Automotive Engine

ELEVATE (European Low Emission V4 Automotive Two-stroke Engine) was a research project part funded by the European Commission to design and develop a compact and efficient gasoline two-stroke automotive engine. Five partners were involved in the project, IFP (Institut Français Du Pétrole) who were the project leaders, Lotus, Opcon (Autorotor and SEM), Politecnico di Milano and Queen's University Belfast. The general project targets were to achieve Euro 3 emissions compliance without DeNOx catalisation, and a power output of 120 kW at 5000 rev/min with maximum torque of 250 Nm at 2000 rev/min. Specific targets were a 15% reduction in fuel consumption compared to its four-stroke counterpart and a size and weight advantage over the four-stroke diesel with significant reduction in particulate and NOx emissions. This paper describes the design philosophy of the engine as well as the application of the various partner technologies used.
Technical Paper

Design and Construction of a Test Rig for Assessing Tyre Characteristics at Rollover

The paper presents a new test rig (named RuotaVia) composed basically by a drum (2,6 m diameter), providing a running contact surface for vehicle wheels. A number of measurements on either full vehicles or vehicle sub-systems (single suspension system or single tyre) can be performed. Tire characteristics influencing rollover can be assessed. The steady-state maximum loads are as follows: Radial: 100kN, tangential: 100kN, lateral (axial with respect to the drum): 100kN. The superstructure carrying a measuring hub can excite the wheel under test up to 20 Hz in lateral and vertical directions. The steer angle range is ± 25 deg, the camber range is ± 80 deg. The minimum eigenfrequency of the drum is higher than 90 Hz and its maximum tangential speed is 440 km/h.
Technical Paper

Dynamic Tests of Racing Seats and Simulation with Vedyac Code

Dynamic tests have been performed on carbon fiber racing seats following the FIA regulations. The tests have shown, in rear impact tests, a relatively strong rebound leading to large forward bending of neck, and, in side impact tests, very large lateral displacement of the head, the latter protruding dangerously towards hard portions of the car structure. Stiffening the seat back by steel struts results in reducing strongly both the motion and the acceleration of the head. Simulations of the dynamics of the tests have been done with multi-body models, including the Hybrid III dummy and seat deflection, by means of the program VEDYAC. It has been found that computer simulation can predict very accurately the result of a test, provided the numerical models have been carefully calibrated to match the dummy tolerance bands. Once they have been calibrated and validated with a number of tests, the computer models can be very useful to extend the test results to different test conditions.
Journal Article

Geometric and Fluid-Dynamic Characterization of Actual Open Cell Foam Samples by a Novel Imaging Analysis Based Algorithm

Metallic open-cell foams have proven to be valuable for many engineering applications. Their success is mainly related to mechanical strength, low density, high specific surface, good thermal exchange, low flow resistance and sound absorption properties. The present work aims to investigate three principal aspects of real foams: the geometrical characterization, the flow regime characterization, the effects of the pore size and the porosity on the pressure drop. The first aspect is very important, since the geometrical properties depend on other parameters, such as porosity, cell/pore size and specific surface. A statistical evaluation of the cell size of a foam sample is necessary to define both its geometrical characteristics and the flow pattern at a given input velocity. To this purpose, a procedure which statistically computes the number of cells and pores with a given size has been implemented in order to obtain the diameter distribution.
Technical Paper

Effects of Turbulence Modulation Addition in OpenFOAM® Toolkit on High Pressure Fuel Sprays

The OpenFOAM® CFD methodology is nowadays employed for simulation in internal combustion engines and a lot of work has been done for an appropriate description of all complex phenomena. At the moment in the RANS turbulence models available in the OpenFOAM® toolbox the turbulence modulation is not yet included, and the present work analyzes the predictive capabilities of the code in simulating high injection pressure fuel sprays after modeling the influence of the dispersed phase on the turbulence structure. Different experiments were employed for the validation. At first, non-evaporating diesel spray was considered in a constant volume and quiescent vessel. The validation was performed via the available experimental spray evolution in terms of penetrations and spatial/temporal fuel distributions. Then the Sandia combustion chamber was chosen for diesel spray simulation in non-reacting conditions.
Technical Paper

Modeling of Pressure Wave Reflection from Open-Ends in I.C.E. Duct Systems

In the most elementary treatment of plane-wave reflection at the open end of a duct system, it is often assumed that the ends are pressure nodes. This implies that pressure is assumed as a constant at the open end termination and that steady flow boundary condition is supposed as instantaneously established. While this simplifying assumption seems reasonable, it does not consider any radiation of acoustic energy from the duct into the surrounding free space; hence, an error in the estimation of the effects of the flow on the acoustical response of an open-end duct occurs. If radiation is accounted, a complicated three-dimensional wave pattern near the duct end is established, which tends to readjust the exit pressure to its steady-flow level. This adjustment process is continually modified by further incident waves, so that the effective instantaneous boundary conditions which determine the reflected waves depend on the flow history.
Technical Paper

Aerodynamic Analysis of an Unmanned Cyclogiro Aircraft

Very little is currently known of the aerodynamic interaction between neighboring cycloidal rotors. Such knowledge is, however, of crucial importance to tune the controller and rotor disposition of a cyclogiro aircraft. Thus, a three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model is developed, validated, and used to analyze the D-Dalus L1 four-rotor unmanned aircraft operating under several configurations. The model solves the Euler equations using the OpenFOAM toolbox in order to provide fast results on a desktop computer. Validation is performed against thrust forces and flow streamlines obtained during wind tunnel experiments at various flight velocities. Numerical results from CFD match the trends of the experimental data. Flow behavior matches the video footage of the wind tunnel tests. Although boundary layer effects are neglected, satisfactory results are obtained both qualitatively and quantitatively.
Technical Paper

A New Electric Powertrain for Light Trucks: Indoor Testing and Advanced Simulation

A new electric powertrain and axle for light/medium trucks is presented. The indoor testing and the simulation of the dynamic behavior are performed. The powertrain and axle has been produced by Streparava and tested at the Laboratory for the Safety of Transport of the Politecnico di Milano. The tests were aimed at defining the multi-physics perfomance of the powertrain and axle (efficiency, acceleration and braking, temperature and NVH). The whole system for indoor tests was composed by the powertrain and axle (electric motor, driveline, suspensions, wheels) and by the test rig (drums, driveline and electric motor). The (driving) axle was positioned on a couple of drums, and the drums provided the proper torques to the wheels to reproduce acceleration and braking. Additionally a cleat fixed on one drum excited the vibration of the suspensions and allowed assessing NVH performance. The simulations were based on a special co-simulation between 1D-AMESIM and VIRTUAL.LAB.
Technical Paper

Comparison and Standardization of Numerical Approaches for the Prediction of Non-reacting and Reacting Diesel Sprays

The primary objective of the research discussed here was to compare the commercial computational fluid dynamics (CFD) software, CONVERGE, and a prevalent open-source code, OpenFOAM, with regard to their ability to predict spray and combustion characteristics. The high-fidelity data were obtained from the Engine Combustion Network (ECN) at Sandia National Laboratory in a constant-volume combustion vessel under well-defined, controlled conditions. The experiments and simulations were performed by using two diesel surrogate fuels (i.e., n-heptane and n-dodecane) under both non-reacting and reacting conditions. Specifically, ECN data on spray penetration, liquid length, vapor penetration, mixture fraction, ignition delay, and flame lift-off length (LOL) were used to validate both codes. Results indicate that both codes can predict the above experimental characteristics very well.
Technical Paper

An Extension of the Dynamic Mesh Handling with Topological Changes for LES of ICE in OpenFOAM®

The paper focuses on the development of a mesh moving method based on non-conformal topologically changing grids applied to the simulation of IC engines, where the prescribed motion of piston and valves is accomplished by rigidly translating the sub-domain representing the moving component. With respect to authors previous work, a more robust and efficient algorithm to handle the connectivity of non-conformal interfaces and a mesh-motion solver supporting multiple layer addition/removal of cells, to decouple the time-step constraints of the mesh motion and of the fluid dynamics, has been implemented as a C++ library to extend the already existing classes for dynamic mesh handling of the finite-volume, open-source CFD code OpenFOAM®. Other new features include automatic decomposition of large multiple region domains to preserve processors load balance with topological changes for parallel computations and additional tools for automatic preprocessing and case setup.
Journal Article

Numerical and Experimental Investigation on Vehicles in Platoon

Many studies have been carried out to optimize the aerodynamic performances of a single car or a single vehicle. In present days the traffic increases and sophisticated technologies are developing to guarantee the drivers safety, to minimize the fuel consumption and be more environmentally friendly. Within this research area a new technique that is being studied is Platooning: this means that different vehicles travel in a configuration that minimizes the aerodynamic drag and therefore the fuel consumption and the longitudinal space. In the present study platoons with different vehicles and configurations are taken into account, to analyze the influence of car shape and relative distance between the vehicles. The research has been carried out using CFD techniques to investigate the different flow fields around different platoons, while wind tunnel tests have been used to validate the results of the CFD simulations.
Journal Article

Dynamic Response of Vehicle-Driver Couple to the Aerodynamic Loads due to the Crossing of a Bridge Tower Wake

In the paper, a procedure to assess the quality of the shielding effect of wind barriers to protect large sided vehicles crossing the wake of a bridge pylon under cross wind conditions is proposed. The methodology is based on Multi-Body simulations of the response of the vehicle-driver system when it is subjected to the sudden change of the aerodynamic forces due to the wind-tower interaction. The aerodynamic forces that are instantaneously acting on the vehicle are computed according to a force distribution approach that relies on wind tunnel tests that may be performed on still scaled models. From the knowledge of the aerodynamic force distribution along the vehicle at different yaw angles and of the mean wind profile across the tower wake, the aerodynamic force, acting on the moving vehicle, is reconstructed at each time step taking into consideration the actual vehicle-driver dynamics.
Journal Article

A Scale Adaptive Filtering Technique for Turbulence Modeling of Unsteady Flows in IC Engines

Swirling flows are very dominant in applied technical problems, especially in IC engines, and their prediction requires rather sophisticated modeling. An adaptive low-pass filtering procedure for the modeled turbulent length and time scales is derived and applied to Menter' original k - ω SST turbulence model. The modeled length and time scales are compared to what can potentially be resolved by the computational grid and time step. If the modeled scales are larger than the resolvable scales, the resolvable scales will replace the modeled scales in the formulation of the eddy viscosity; therefore, the filtering technique helps the turbulence model to adapt in accordance with the mesh resolution and the scales to capture.
Journal Article

Indoor/Outdoor Testing of a Passenger Car Suspension for Vibration and Harshness Analysis

This paper presents a validation method for indoor testing of a passenger car suspension. A study was done to design a supporting modular structure with comparable inertances with respect to a vehicle's actual suspension and body connection points. For the indoor test, the rear axle is positioned on a rotating drum. The suspension system is excited as the wheel passes over cleats fixed on the drum and transient wheel motions are recorded. The indoor test rig outputs (i.e., wheel and chassis accelerations) were compared with experimental data measured on an actual vehicle running at different speeds on the same set of cleats along a flat road. The comparison results validate the indoor testing method. The forces and moments acting at each suspension and chassis connection point were measured with a set of patented six-axis load cells. The forces, moments, wheel and subframe accelerations were measured up to 120 Hz.