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Journal Article

Impact of RME and GTL Fuel on Combustion and Emissions of a “Torque-Controlled” Diesel Automotive Engines

The present paper describes some results of a research project aimed at studying the impact of alternative fuels blends on the emissions and fuel consumption of an Euro 5 automotive diesel engine. Two alternative fuels were chosen for the experiments: RME and GTL. The tests were done in the three most important operating conditions for the engine emission calibration. Moreover, the NOx-PM trade-off by means of EGR sweep was performed in the same operating conditions, in order to evaluate the engine EGR tolerability when burning low sooting fuels as the RME. The investigations put in evidence that the impact of the alternative fuels on modern diesel engines remains significant. This also depends on the interaction between the alternative fuel characteristics and the engine-management strategies, as described in detail in the paper.
Technical Paper

Assessment of the Effect of Low Cetane Number Fuels on a Light Duty CI Engine: Preliminary Experimental Characterization in PCCI Operating Condition

The goal of this paper is to acquire insight into the influence of cetane number (CN) and fuel oxygen on overall engine performance in the Premixed Charge Compression Ignition (PCCI) combustion mode. From literature, it is known that low reactive (i.e., low CN) fuels increase the ignition delay (ID) and therefore the degree of mixing prior to auto-ignition. With respect to fuel oxygen, it is known that this has a favorable impact on soot emissions by means of carbon sequestration. This makes the use of low CN oxygen fuels an interesting route to improve the applicability of PCCI combustion in diesel engines. In earlier studies, performed on a heavy-duty engine, cyclic oxygenates were found to consistently outperform their straight and branched counterparts with respect to curbing soot. This was attributed to a considerably lower CN.
Technical Paper

Emission Reduction Technologies for the Future Low Emission Rail Diesel Engines: EGR vs SCR

The EU emission standards for new rail Diesel engines are becoming even more stringent. EGR and SCR technologies can both be used to reduce NOx emissions; however, the use of EGR is usually accompanied by an increase in PM emissions and may require a DPF. On the other hand, the use of SCR requires on-board storage of urea. Thus, it is necessary to study these trade-offs in order to understand how these technologies can best be used in rail applications to meet new emission standards. The present study assesses the application of these technologies in Diesel railcars on a quantitative basis using one and three dimensional numerical simulation tools. In particular, the study considers a 560 kW railcar engine with the use of either EGR or SCR based solutions for NOx reduction. The NOx and PM emissions performances are evaluated over the C1 homologation cycle.
Technical Paper

Key Fuel Injection System Features for Efficiency Improvement in Future Diesel Passenger Cars

Diesel will continue to be an indispensable energy carrier for the car fleet CO2 emission targets in the short-term. This is particularly relevant for heavy-duty vehicles as for mid-size cars and SUVs. Looking at the latest technology achievements on the after-treatment systems, it can be stated that the concerning about the NOx emission gap between homologation test and real road use is basically solved, while the future challenge for diesel survival is to keep its competitiveness in the CO2 vs cost equation in comparison to other propulsion systems. The development of the combustion system design still represents an important leverage for further efficiency and emissions improvements while keeping the current excellent performance in terms of power density and low-end torque.
Technical Paper

Experimental Analysis of the Operating Parameter Influence on the application of Low Temperature Combustion in the Modern Diesel Engines

The present paper describes the effects of some operating parameters on the performance of a single cylinder research engine when it runs under Low Temperature Combustion (LTC) conditions. Aim of the experimental work was to explore the potential of the control of each parameter on the improvement of LTC application to the modern LD diesel engines for passenger cars. In particular, the effects on LTC performance of the following operating parameters in different engine test points were analyzed: intake air temperature, exhaust EGR cooler temperature, intake pipe pressure, exhaust pipe pressure and swirl ratio. Some parameters have shown a particular influence on the improvement of EGR tolerability for maximum NOx reduction preserving fuel consumption and smoke, while others have evidenced poor sensitivity.
Technical Paper

Compression Ratio Influence on the Performance of an Advanced Single-Cylinder Diesel Engine Operating in Conventional and Low Temperature Combustion Mode

The present paper describes a detailed experimental analysis on the effect of the compression ratio on the performance of a single-cylinder research diesel engine operating with both conventional combustion and Low Temperature Combustion mode for low NOx emissions. The single-cylinder engine was developed with the same combustion system architecture of the four-cylinder FIAT 1.9 liter Multi-Jet. Starting from an engine configuration with a compression ratio of 16.5, the compression ratio was reduced to 14.5. For both the geometric configurations, engine performance was evaluated in terms of thermodynamic parameters, emissions and fuel consumption in some operating test points representative of the engine behavior running on the NEDC cycle.
Technical Paper

Parametric Analysis of the Effect of Pilot Quantity, Combustion Phasing and EGR on Efficiencies of a Gasoline PPC Light-Duty Engine

In this paper, a parametric analysis on the main engine calibration parameters applied on gasoline Partially Premixed Combustion (PPC) is performed. Theoretically, the PPC concept permits to improve both the engine efficiencies and the NOx-soot trade-off simultaneously compared to the conventional diesel combustion. This work is based on the design of experiments (DoE), statistical approach, and investigates on the engine calibration parameters that might affect the efficiencies and the emissions of a gasoline PPC. The full factorial DoE analysis based on three levels and three factors (33 factorial design) is performed at three engine operating conditions of the Worldwide harmonized Light vehicles Test Cycles (WLTC). The pilot quantity (Qpil), the crank angle position when 50% of the total heat is released (CA50), and the exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) factors are considered. The goal is to identify an engine calibration with high efficiency and low emissions.
Technical Paper

Assessment of Closed-Loop Combustion Control Capability for Biodiesel Blending Detection and Combustion Impact Mitigation for an Euro5 Automotive Diesel Engine

The present paper describes the results of a cooperative research project between GM Powertrain Europe and Istituto Motori - CNR aimed at studying the impact of both fresh and highly oxidized Rapeseed Methyl Ester (RME) at different levels of blending on performance, emissions and fuel consumption of modern automotive diesel engines featuring Closed-Loop Combustion Control (CLCC). In parallel, the capability of this system to detect the level of biodiesel blending through the use of specific detection algorithms was assessed. The tests were performed on the recently released 2.0L Euro5 GM diesel engine for passenger car application equipped with embedded pressure sensors in the glow plugs. Various blends of fresh and aged RME with reference diesel fuel were tested, notably 20% RME by volume (B20), 50% (B50) and pure RME (B100).
Journal Article

Analysis of Particle Mass and Size Emissions from a Catalyzed Diesel Particulate Filter during Regeneration by Means of Actual Injection Strategies in Light Duty Engines

The diesel particulate filters (DPF) are considered the most robust technologies for particle emission reduction both in terms of mass and number. On the other hand, the increase of the backpressure in the exhaust system due to the accumulation of the particles in the filter walls leads to an increase of the engine fuel consumption and engine power reduction. To limit the filter loading, and the backpressure, a periodical regeneration is needed. Because of the growing interest about particle emission both in terms of mass, number and size, it appears important to monitor the evolution of the particle mass and number concentrations and size distribution during the regeneration of the DPFs. For this matter, in the presented work the regeneration of a catalyzed filter was fully analyzed. Particular attention was dedicated to the dynamic evolution both of the thermodynamic parameters and particle emissions.
Journal Article

The Key Role of the Closed-loop Combustion Control for Exploiting the Potential of Biodiesel in a Modern Diesel Engine for Passenger Car Applications

The present paper describes the results of a cooperative research project between GM Powertrain Europe and Istituto Motori - CNR aimed at studying the capability of GM Combustion Closed-Loop Control (CLCC) in enabling seamless operation with high biodiesel blending levels in a modern diesel engine for passenger car applications. As a matter of fact, fuelling modern electronically-controlled diesel engines with high blends of biodiesel leads to a performance reduction of about 12-15% at rated power and up to 30% in the low-end torque, while increasing significantly the engine-out NOx emissions. These effects are both due to the interaction of the biodiesel properties with the control logic of the electronic control unit, which is calibrated for diesel operation. However, as the authors previously demonstrated, if engine calibration is re-tuned for biodiesel fuelling, the above mentioned drawbacks can be compensated and the biodiesel environmental inner qualities can be fully deployed.
Journal Article

Determination of Oxidation Characteristics and Studies on the Feasibility of Metallic Nanoparticles Combustion Under ICE-Like Conditions

The present work relates to the investigation of the basic oxidation characteristics of iron and aluminium nanoparticles as well as the feasibility of their combustion under both Internal Combustion Engine (ICE)-like and real engine conditions. Based on a series of proof-of-concept experiments, combustion was found to be feasible taking place in a controllable way and bearing similarities to the respective case of conventional fuels. These studies were complimented by relevant in-situ and ex-situ/post-analysis, in order to elaborate the fundamental phenomena occurring during combustion as well as the extent and ‘quality’ of the process. The oxidation mechanisms of the two metallic fuels appear different and -as expected- the energy release during combustion of aluminium is significantly higher than that released in the case of iron.
Technical Paper

Hydrocracked Fossil Oil and Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO) Effects on Combustion and Emissions Performance of “Torque-Controlled” Diesel Engines

The present paper describes the results of a research activity aimed at studying the potential offered by the use of Hydrocracked fossil oil (HCK) and Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO) blends as premium fuels for next generation diesel engines. Five fuels have been tested in a light duty four cylinder diesel engine, Euro 5 version, equipped with closed loop control of the combustion. The set of fuels comprises four experimental fuels specifically formulated by blending high cetane HVO and HCK streams and oneEN590-compliant commercial diesel fuel representative of the current market fuel quality. A well consolidated procedure has been carried out to estimate, for the tested fuels, the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) vehicle performance by means of the specific emissions at steady-state engine operating points.
Technical Paper

Combustion and Emission Characteristics of a Diesel Engine Fuelled with Diesel-LPG Blends

Recently, it has been worth pointing out the relevance of alternative fuels in the improvement of air quality conditions and in the mitigation of global warming. In order to deal with these demands, in recent studies, it has been considered a great variety of alternative fuels. It goes without saying that the alternative fuels industry needs the best of the efficiency with a moderate layout. From this perspective, Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) could represent a valid option, although it is not a renewable fuel. In terms of polluting emissions, the LPG can reduce nitrous oxides and smoke concentrations in the air, a capability that has a relevant importance for the modern pollution legislation. LPG is well known as an alternative fuel for Spark Ignition (SI) engines and, more recently, LPG systems have also been introduced in the Compression Ignition (CI) engines in dual-fuel configuration.
Technical Paper

Emissive Behavior of a Heavy-Duty SI Gas Engine During WHTC

In the arduous aim to reduce petroleum fuel consumption and toxic emissions, gaseous fuels can represent an alternative solution for heavy duty applications with respect to conventional liquid fuels. At the same time, the imposition of more stringent emission regulations in the transport sector, is a crucial aspect to be taken into account during the development of future gas engines. Aim of the present paper was to characterize a heavy duty spark ignition engine, under development for Euro VI compliance, with a particular focus on exhaust particulate emissions. In this sense, the engine was installed on a dynamic test bench, accurately instrumented to analyze combustion evolution, performance and exhaust pollutant emissions, along the World Harmonized Transient Cycle (WHTC).
Technical Paper

Experimental and Numerical Analysis of Nozzle Flow Number Impact on Full Load Performance of an Euro5 Automotive Diesel Engine

The present paper describes an experimental and numerical study on the effect of the nozzle flow number (FN) on the full load performance of a modern Euro5 diesel automotive engine, in terms of torque, efficiency and exhaust emissions. The improvement of the diesel engine performance requires a continuous development of the engine components, first of all the injection system and in particular the nozzle design. One of the most crucial factors affecting performance and emissions is the nozzle flow number and its influence becomes more and more important as high performance and low emissions are continuous requirements. Indeed, reducing the nozzle flow number, due to an increase of spray-air mixing, an improvement in PM-NOx trade-off is generally expectable. On the other hand, at full load, where peak firing pressure and exhaust valve temperature become the limiting factors, critical operating conditions can be easily reached reducing the nozzle hole diameter.
Technical Paper

Impact of Biodiesel on Particle Emissions and DPF Regeneration Management in a Euro5 Automotive Diesel Engine

Biofuel usage is increasingly expanding thanks to its significant contribution to a well-to-wheel (WTW) reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. In addition, stringent emission standards make mandatory the use of Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) for the particulate emissions control. The different physical properties and chemical composition of biofuels impact the overall engine behaviour. In particular, the PM emissions and the related DPF regeneration strategy are clearly affected by biofuel usage due mainly to its higher oxygen content and lower low heating value (LHV). More specifically, the PM emissions and the related DPF regeneration strategy are clearly affected by biofuel usage due mainly to its higher oxygen content and lower low heating value, respectively. The particle emissions, in fact, are lower mainly because of the higher oxygen content. Subsequently less frequent regenerations are required.
Technical Paper

Combustion Behaviour and Emission Performance of Neat and Blended Polyoxymethylene Dimethyl Ethers in a Light-Duty Diesel Engine

The combustion behaviour, the mechanisms of soot formation, and the emission performance of a mixture of polyoxymethylene dimethyl ethers (POMDME) oligomers with a number of oxymethylene units ranging from 3 to 5, both neat and blended at 12.5% and 50% levels with commercial diesel fuel have been investigated. The goals were a first evaluation of the POMDME impact on the diesel injector behaviour, on the combustion process as well as on the emission performance of a light duty engine. Then a brief screening on the capability to improve the NOx-PM trade-off using POMDME by means of the exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) rate increment was also assessed.
Technical Paper

How Much Regeneration Events Influence Particle Emissions of DPF-Equipped Vehicles?

Diesel particulate filter (DPF) is the most effective emission control device for reducing particle emissions (both mass, PM, and number, PN) from diesel engines, however many studies reported elevated emissions of nanoparticles (<50 nm) during its regeneration. In this paper the results of an extensive literature survey is presented. During DPF active regeneration, most of the literature studies showed an increase in the number of the emitted nanoparticles of about 2-3 orders of magnitude compared to the normal operating conditions. Many factors could influence their amount, size distribution, chemical-physical nature (volatiles, semi-volatiles, solid) and the duration of the regenerative event: i.e. DPF load and thermodynamic conditions, lube and fuel sulfur content, engine operative conditions, PN sampling and measurement methodologies.
Technical Paper

The Key Role of Advanced, Flexible Fuel Injection Systems to Match the Future CO2 Targets in an Ultra-Light Mid-Size Diesel Engine

The paper describes the results achieved in developing a new diesel combustion system for passenger car application that, while capable of high power density, delivers excellent fuel economy through a combination of mechanical and thermodynamic efficiencies improvement. The project stemmed from the idea that, by leveraging the high fuel injection pressure of last generation common rail systems, it is possible to reduce the engine peak firing pressure (pfp) with great benefits on reciprocating and rotating components light-weighting and friction for high-speed light-duty engines, while keeping the power density at competitive levels. To this aim, an advanced injection system concept capable of injection pressure greater than 2500 bar was coupled to a prototype engine featuring newly developed combustion system. Then, the matching among these features have been thoroughly experimentally examined.
Journal Article

Alternative Diesel Fuels Effects on Combustion and Emissions of an Euro5 Automotive Diesel Engine

The present paper describes some results of a cooperative research project between GM Powertrain Europe and Istituto Motori of CNR aimed at studying the impact of FAME and GTL fuel blends on the performance, emissions and fuel consumption of the latest-generation automotive diesel engines. The investigation was carried out on the newly released GM 2.0L 4-cylinder “torque-controlled” Euro 5 diesel engine for PC application and followed previous tests on its Euro 4 version, in order to track the interaction between the alternative fuels and the diesel engine, as the technology evolves. Various blends of first generation biodiesels (RME, SME) and GTL with a reference diesel fuel were tested, notably B20, B50 and B100. The tests were done in a wide range of engine operation points for the complete characterization of the biodiesels performance in the NEDC cycle, as well as in full load conditions.