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Journal Article

Comparison of Negative Valve Overlap (NVO) and Rebreathing Valve Strategies on a Gasoline PPC Engine at Low Load and Idle Operating Conditions

Gasoline partially premixed combustion (PPC) has the potential of high efficiency and simultaneous low soot and NOx emissions. Running the engine in PPC mode with high octane number fuels has the advantage of a longer premix period of fuel and air which reduces soot emissions. The problem is the ignitability at low load and idle operating conditions. In a previous study it was shown that it is possible to use NVO to improve combustion stability and combustion efficiency at operating conditions where available boosted air is assumed to be limited. NVO has the disadvantage of low net indicated efficiency due to heat losses from recompressions of the hot residual gases. An alternative to NVO is the rebreathing valve strategy where the exhaust valves are reopened during the intake stroke. The net indicated efficiency is expected to be higher with the rebreathing strategy but the question is if similar improvements in combustion stability can be achieved with rebreathing as with NVO.
Technical Paper

Effect of Relative Mixture Strength on Performance of Divided Chamber ‘Avalanche Activated Combustion’ Ignition Technique in a Heavy Duty Natural Gas Engine

This article deals with application of a pre-chamber type ignition device in a heavy duty engine operated with natural gas. A particular pre-chamber ignition strategy called Avalanche Activated Combustion (originally ‘Lavinia Aktyvatsia Gorenia’ in Russian), commonly referred to as LAG-ignition process, has been studied by performing a parametric study of various pre- and main chamber mixture strength combinations. This strategy was first proposed in 1966 and has been mostly applied in light duty automotive engines. A majority of published data are results from developmental studies but the fundamental mechanism of the LAG-ignition process is unclear to date. To the best of authors' knowledge, the study presented in this article is the first generalized study to gain deeper understanding of the LAG-ignition process in heavy duty engines operating with natural gas as fuel for both chambers.
Technical Paper

A Study on In-Cycle Control of NOx Using Injection Strategy with a Fast Cylinder Pressure Based Emission Model as Feedback

The emission control in heavy-duty vehicles today is based on predefined injection strategies and after-treatment systems such as SCR (selective catalytic reduction) and DPF (diesel particulate filter). State-of-the-art engine control is presently based on cycle-to-cycle resolution. The introduction of the crank angle resolved pressure measurement, from a piezo-based pressure sensor, enables the possibility to control the fuel injection based on combustion feedback while the combustion is occurring. In this paper a study is presented on the possibility to control NOx (nitrogen oxides) formation with a crank angle resolved NOx estimator as feedback. The estimator and the injection control are implemented on an FPGA (Field-Programmable Gate Array) to manage the inherent time constraints. The FPGA is integrated with the rest of the engine control system for injection control and measurement.
Technical Paper

Flow Field Measurements inside a Piston Bowl of a Heavy-Duty Diesel Engine

Combination of flow field measurements, shown in this paper, give new information on the effect of engine run parameters to formation of different flow fields inside piston bowl. The measurements were carried out with particle image velocimetry (PIV) technique in optical engine. Good set of results was achieved even though the feasibility of this technique in diesel engines is sometimes questioned. Main challenge in diesel engines is background radiation from soot particles which is strong enough to conceal the PIV signal. Window staining in diesel engine is also a problem, since very high particle image quality is needed for velocity analysis. All measurements were made in an optical heavy-duty diesel engine. Optical design of engine was Bowditch type [1]. The engine was charged and equipped with exhaust gas recirculation (EGR). The exhaust gas level was monitored by oxygen concentration and the level was matched to former soot concentration measurements.
Technical Paper

Investigating Mode Switch from SI to HCCI using Early Intake Valve Closing and Negative Valve Overlap

This study investigates mode switching from spark ignited operation with early intake valve closing to residual gas enhanced HCCI using negative valve overlap on a port-fuel injected light-duty diesel engine. A mode switch is demonstrated at 3.5 bar IMEPnet and 1500 rpm. Valve timings and fuel amount have to be selected carefully prior to the mode switch. During mode transition, IMEPnet deviates by up to 0.5 bar from the set point. The time required to return to the set point as well as the transient behavior of the engine load varies depending on which control structure that is used. Both a model-based controller and a PI control approach were implemented and evaluated in experiments. The controllers were active in HCCI mode. The model-based controller achieved a smoother transition and while using it, the transition could be accomplished within three engine cycles.
Journal Article

Combustion Stratification with Partially Premixed Combustion, PPC, using NVO and Split Injection in a LD - Diesel Engine

Partially Premixed Combustion (PPC) is used to meet the increasing demands of emission legislation and to improve fuel efficiency. PPC with gasoline fuels have the advantage of a longer premixed duration of fuel/air mixture which prevents soot formation at higher loads. The objective of this paper is to investigate the degree of stratification for low load (towards idle) engine conditions using different injection strategies and negative valve overlap (NVO). The question is, how homogenous or stratified is the partially premixed combustion (PPC) for a given setting of NVO and fuel injection strategy. In this work PRF 55 has been used as PPC fuel. The experimental engine is a light duty (LD) diesel engine that has been modified to single cylinder operation to provide optical access into the combustion chamber, equipped with a fully variable valve train system. Hot residual gases were trapped by using NVO to dilute the cylinder mixture.
Technical Paper

Effect of Pre-Chamber Volume and Nozzle Diameter on Pre-Chamber Ignition in Heavy Duty Natural Gas Engines

It has previously been shown by the authors that the pre-chamber ignition technique operating with fuel-rich pre-chamber combustion strategy is a very effective means of extending the lean limit of combustion with excess air in heavy duty natural gas engines in order to improve indicated efficiency and reduce emissions. This article presents a study of the influence of pre-chamber volume and nozzle diameter on the resultant ignition characteristics. The two parameters varied are the ratio of pre-chamber volume to engine's clearance volume and the ratio of total area of connecting nozzle to the pre-chamber volume. Each parameter is varied in 3 steps hence forming a 3 by 3 test matrix. The experiments are performed on a single cylinder 2L engine fitted with a custom made pre-chamber capable of spark ignition, fuel injection and pressure measurement.
Technical Paper

A Predictive Real Time NOx Model for Conventional and Partially Premixed Diesel Combustion

A previously presented robust and fast diagnostic NOx model was modified into a predictive model. This was done by using simple yet physically-based models for fuel injection, ignition delay, premixed heat release rate and diffusion combustion heat release rate. The model can be used both for traditional high temperature combustion and for high-EGR low temperature combustion. It was possible to maintain a high accuracy and calculation speed of the NOx model itself. The root mean square of the relative model error is 16 % and the calculation speed is around one second on a PC. Combustion characteristics such as ignition delay, CA50 and the general shape of the heat release rate are well predicted by the combustion model. The model is aimed at real time NOx calculation and optimization in a vehicle on the road.
Technical Paper

Two-Dimensional Temperature Measurements in Diesel Piston Bowl Using Phosphor Thermometry

Phosphor thermometry was used during fuel injection in an optical engine with the glass piston of reentrant type. SiO2 coated phosphor particle was used for the gas-phase temperature measurements, which gave much less background signal. The measurements were performed in motored mode, in combustion mode with injection of n-heptane and in non-combustion mode with injection of iso-octane. In the beginning of injection period, the mean temperature of each injection cases was lower than that of the motored case, and temperature of iso-octane injection cases was even lower than that of n-heptane injection cases. This indicates, even if vaporization effect seemed to be the same at both injection cases, the effect of temperature decrease changed due to the chemical reaction effect for the n-heptane cases. Chemical reaction seems to be initiated outside of the fuel liquid spray and the position was moving towards the fuel rich area as the time proceeds.
Technical Paper

Detailed Heat Release Analyses with Regard to Combustion of RME and Oxygenated Fuels in an HSDI Diesel Engine

Experiments on a modern DI Diesel engine were carried out: The engine was fuelled with standard Diesel fuel, RME and a mixture of 85% standard Diesel fuel, 5% RME and 10% higher alcohols under low load conditions (4 bar IMEP). During these experiments, different external EGR levels were applied while the injection timing was chosen in a way to keep the location of 50% heat release constant. Emission analysis results were in accordance with widely known correlations: Increasing EGR rates lowered NOx emissions. This is explained by a decrease of global air-fuel ratio entailing longer ignition delay. Local gas-fuel ratio increases during ignition delay and local combustion temperature is lowered. Exhaust gas analysis indicated further a strong increase of CO, PM and unburned HC emissions at high EGR levels. This resulted in lower combustion efficiency. PM emissions however, decreased above 50% EGR which was also in accordance with previously reported results.
Technical Paper

Study of Fuel Stratification on Spark Assisted Compression Ignition (SACI) Combustion with Ethanol Using High Speed Fuel PLIF

An engine can be run in Homogenous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) mode by applying a negative valve overlap, thus trapping hot residuals so as to achieve an auto-ignition temperature. By employing spark assistance, the engine can be operated in what is here called Spark Assisted Compression Ignition (SACI) with ethanol as fuel. The influence of fuel stratification by means of port fuel injection as well as in combination with direct injection was investigated. A high-speed multi-YAG laser system and a framing camera were utilized to capture planar laser-induced fluorescence (PLIF) images of the fuel distribution. The charge homogeneity in terms of fuel distribution was evaluated using a homogeneity index calculated from the PLIF images. The homogeneity index showed a higher stratification for increased proportions of direct-injected fuel. It was found that charge stratification could be achieved through port fuel injection in a swirling combustion system.
Technical Paper

Operating Conditions Using Spark Assisted HCCI Combustion During Combustion Mode Transfer to SI in a Multi-Cylinder VCR-HCCI Engine

The Homogenous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) operating range in terms of speed and load does not cover contemporary driving cycles, e.g. the European driving cycle EC2000, without increased engine displacement, supercharging, or without excessive noise and high NOx emissions. Hence, the maximum achievable load with HCCI is too low for high load vehicle operation and a combustion mode transfer from HCCI to spark ignited (SI) has to be done. At some operating conditions spark assisted HCCI combustion is possible, which makes a mixed combustion mode and controlled combustion mode transfers possible. The mixed combustion region and the operating conditions are investigated in this paper from lean SI limit to pure HCCI without SI assistance. Parameters as compression ratio, inlet air pressure, inlet air temperature, and lambda are used for controlling the mixed combustion mode. A strategy for closed-loop combustion mode transfer is discussed.
Technical Paper

Optical Diagnostics of HCCI and UNIBUS Using 2-D PLIF of OH and Formaldehyde

Simultaneous OH- and formaldehyde planar-LIF measurements have been performed in an optical engine using two laser sources working on 283 and 355 nm, respectively. The measurements were performed in a light duty Diesel engine, using n-heptane as fuel, converted to single-cylinder operation and modified for optical access. It was also equipped with a direct injection common rail system as well as an EGR system. The engine was operated in both HCCI mode, using a single fuel injection, and UNIBUS (Uniform Bulky Combustion System) mode, using two injections of fuel with one of the injections at 50 CAD before TDC and the other one just before TDC. The OH and formaldehyde LIF images were compared with the heat-release calculated from the pressure-traces. Analyses of the emissions, for example NOx and HC, were also performed for the different operating conditions.
Technical Paper

Balancing Cylinder-to-Cylinder Variations in a Multi-Cylinder VCR-HCCI Engine

Combustion initiation in an HCCI engine is dependent of several parameters that are not easily controlled like the temperature and pressure history in the cylinder. So achieving the same ignition condition in all the cylinders in a multi-cylinder engine is difficult. Factors as gas exchange, compression ratio, cylinder cooling, fuel supply, and inlet air temperature can differ from cylinder-to-cylinder. These differences cause both combustion phasing and load variations between the cylinders, which in the end affect the engine performance. Operating range in terms of speed and load is also affected by the cylinder imbalance, since misfiring or too fast combustion in the worst cylinders limits the load. The cylinder-to-cylinder variations are investigated in a multi-cylinder Variable Compression Ratio (VCR) engine, and the effect it has on the engine performance.
Technical Paper

The Effect of Intake Temperature on HCCI Operation Using Negative Valve Overlap

A naturally aspirated in-line six-cylinder 2.9-litre Volvo engine is operated in Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) mode, using camshafts with low lift and short duration generating negative valve overlap. This implementation requires only minor modifications of the standard SI engine and allows SI operation outside the operating range of HCCI. Standard port fuel injection is used and pistons and cylinder head are unchanged from the automotive application. A heat exchanger is utilized to heat or cool the intake air, not as a means of combustion control but in order to simulate realistic variations in ambient temperature. The combustion is monitored in real time using cylinder pressure sensors. HCCI through negative valve overlap is recognized as one of the possible implementation strategies of HCCI closest to production. However, for a practical application the intake temperature will vary both geographically and from time to time.
Technical Paper

Operating range in a Multi Cylinder HCCI engine using Variable Compression Ratio

Homogenous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) is a promising part load combustion concept for future power train applications. Different approaches to achieve and control HCCI combustion are today investigated and compared, especially concerning operating range. The HCCI operating range for vehicle applications should at least cover contemporary emissions drive cycles. The operating range in terms of speed and load is investigated with a Naturally Aspirated (NA) four-stroke multi-cylinder engine with Port Fuel Injection (PFI). HCCI combustion control is achieved with Variable Compression Ratio (VCR) and inlet air preheating with exhaust heat. Both primary reference fuels and commercial gasoline are used in the tests. HCCI combustion with commercial gasoline is achieved over a load range from 0 to 3.6bar BMEP, and over a speed range from 1000 to 5000rpm. Maximum load is at 1000rpm and decreases with an approximately straight slope to zero at 5000rpm.
Technical Paper

Ignition Sensitivity Study of Partially Premixed Combustion by Using Shadowgraphy and OH* Chemiluminescence Methods

Partially Premixed Combustion (PPC) is a promising combustion concept for future IC engines. However, controllability of PPC is still a challenge and needs more investigation. The scope of the present study is to investigate the ignition sensitivity of PPC to the injection timing at different injection pressures. To better understand this, high-speed shadowgraphy is used to visualize fuel injection and evaporation at different Start of Injections (SOI). Spray penetration and injection targeting are derived from shadowgraphy movies. OH* chemiluminescence is used to comprehensively study the stratification level of combustion which is helpful for interpretation of ignition sensitivity behavior. Shadowgraphy results confirm that SOI strongly affects the spray penetration and evaporation of fuel. However, spray penetration and ignition sensitivity are barely affected by the injection pressure.
Technical Paper

Computational Study of Stratified Combustion in an Optical Diesel Engine

Full cycle simulations of KAUST optical diesel engine were conducted in order to provide insights into the details of fuel spray, mixing, and combustion characteristics at different start of injection (SOI) conditions. Although optical diagnostics provide valuable information, the high fidelity simulations with matched parametric conditions improve fundamental understanding of relevant physical and chemical processes by accessing additional observables such as the local mixture distribution, intermediate species concentrations, and detailed chemical reaction rates. Commercial software, CONVERGE™, was used as the main simulation tool, with the Reynolds averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) turbulence model and the multi-zone (SAGE) combustion model to compute the chemical reaction terms. SOI is varied from late compression ignition (CI) to early partially premixed combustion (PPC) conditions.
Technical Paper

High-Speed Particle Image Velocimetry Measurement of Partially Premixed Combustion (PPC) in a Light Duty Engine for Different Injection Strategies

It has been proven that partially premixed combustion (PPC) has the capability of high combustion efficiency with low soot and NOx emissions, which meet the requirements of increasingly restricted emission regulations. In order to obtain more homogenous combustion and longer ignition delay in PPC, different fuel injection strategies were employed which could affect the fuel air mixing and control the combustion. In the present work, a light duty optical diesel engine was used to conduct high speed particle image velocimetry (PIV) for single, double and triple injections with different timings. A quartz piston and a cylinder liner were installed in the Bowditch configuration to enable optical access. The geometry of the quartz piston crown is based on the standard diesel combustion chamber design for this commercial passenger car engine, including a re-entrant bowl shape.
Technical Paper

Effects of Injection Strategies on Fluid Flow and Turbulence in Partially Premixed Combustion (PPC) in a Light Duty Engine

Partially premixed combustion (PPC) is used to meet the increasing demands of emission legislation and to improve fuel efficiency. With gasoline fuels, PPC has the advantage of a longer premixed duration of the fuel/air mixture, which prevents soot formation. In addition, the overall combustion stability can be increased with a longer ignition delay, providing proper fuel injection strategies. In this work, the effects of multiple injections on the generation of in-cylinder turbulence at a single swirl ratio are investigated. High-speed particle image velocimetry (PIV) is conducted in an optical direct-injection (DI) engine to obtain the turbulence structure during fired conditions. Primary reference fuel (PRF) 70 (30% n-heptane and 70% iso-octane) is used as the PPC fuel. In order to maintain the in-cylinder flow as similarly as possible to the flow that would exist in a production engine, the quartz piston retains a realistic bowl geometry.