Natural Gas Engines for Cogeneration: Highest Efficiency and Near-Zero-Emissions through Turbocharging, EGR and 3-Way Catalytic Converter
Combustion engines for decentralized power generation or cogeneration in general, are subject to increasingly stringent pollutant emissions regulations. Motivated by the Europe-;wide lowest allowable NOx levels in Switzerland - particularly in the Zurich metropolitan area with 50 mg/Nm3 at 5% O2 - and in close cooperation with industry, the I.C. Engines and Combustion Laboratory (LVV) of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETHZ) has investigated some new operating concepts and engine processes in order to overcome the dilemma between low emissions and high efficiency, which is usually encountered in engine optimization. Our final approach thereby involves the Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) combined with stoichiometric mixture (λ = 1) and a 3-way catalytic converter. The engine is supercharged and the intake mixture aftercooled for high power density and thermal efficiency.