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Technical Paper

The Effect of In-Cylinder Gas Flow on the Interpretation of the Ionization Sensor Signal

The location of the peak pressure can serve as a control parameter to adjust ignition timing and optimize engine performance. The ionization sensor, an electrical probe for combustion diagnostics, can provide information about the peak pressure location. However, the reliability of such information is rather poor. In-cylinder gas flow at the electrodes may be one reason for this. We present results from an investigation of the relationship between ionization sensor current and pressure under various gas flow conditions. The gas flow velocity in the vicinity of the electrode gap was measured by LDA. From the results one may infer how the in-cylinder gas flow affects the reliability of the prediction of pressure peak location from the ionization sensor signal. One finding is that high bulk gas flow impairs the precision of the prediction in certain configurations.