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Technical Paper

Performance of a Printed Bimetallic (Stainless Steel and Bronze) Engine Head Operating under Stoichiometric and Lean Spark Ignited (SI) Combustion of Natural Gas

Additive manufacturing was used to fabricate a head for an automotive-scale single-cylinder engine operating on natural gas. The head was consisted of a bimetallic composition of stainless steel and bronze. The engine performance using the bimetallic head was compared against the stock cast iron head. The heads were tested at two speeds (1200 and 1800 rpm), two brake mean effective pressures (6 and 10 bar), and two equivalence ratios (0.7 and 1.0). The bimetallic head showed good durability over the test and produced equivalent efficiencies, exhaust temperatures, and heat rejection to the coolant to the stock head. Higher combustion temperatures and advanced combustion phasing resulted from use with the bimetallic head. The implication is that with optimization of the valve timing, an efficiency benefit may be realized with the bimetallic head.
Journal Article

Novel Characterization of GDI Engine Exhaust for Gasoline and Mid-Level Gasoline-Alcohol Blends

Gasoline direct injection (GDI) engines can offer improved fuel economy and higher performance over their port fuel-injected (PFI) counterparts, and are now appearing in increasingly more U.S. and European vehicles. Small displacement, turbocharged GDI engines are replacing large displacement engines, particularly in light-duty trucks and sport utility vehicles, in order for manufacturers to meet more stringent fuel economy standards. GDI engines typically emit the most particulate matter (PM) during periods of rich operation such as start-up and acceleration, and emissions of air toxics are also more likely during this condition. A 2.0 L GDI engine was operated at lambda of 0.91 at typical loads for acceleration (2600 rpm, 8 bar BMEP) on three different fuels; an 87 anti-knock index (AKI) gasoline (E0), 30% ethanol blended with the 87 AKI fuel (E30), and 48% isobutanol blended with the 87 AKI fuel.
Technical Paper

In-Cylinder Regeneration of Lean NOx Trap Catalysts Using Low Temperature Combustion

A Lean NOx Trap (LNT) regeneration method that has shown promise regarding its ability to effectively regenerate the LNT, while not adversely affecting the PM emissions, involves the use of Low Temperature Combustion (LTC). LTC is accomplished by highly diluting the intake charge with EGR.1-3* If enough EGR is applied, the in-cylinder air:fuel mixture, and ensuing exhaust, will become rich, thereby regenerating the LNT. This type of highly dilute combustion tends to be more premixed than diffusion, which can lower engine-out PM and NOx emissions. LTC regeneration has been characterized and results are presented comparing this approach to other approaches for rich, in-cylinder diesel combustion for LNT regeneration.
Journal Article

High Load Expansion of Catalytic EGR-Loop Reforming under Stoichiometric Conditions for Increased Efficiency in Spark Ignition Engines

The use of fuel reformate from catalytic processes is known to have beneficial effects on the spark-ignited (SI) combustion process through enhanced dilution tolerance and decreased combustion duration, but in many cases reformate generation can incur a significant fuel penalty. In a previous investigation, the researchers showed that, by controlling the boundary conditions of the reforming catalyst, it was possible to minimize the thermodynamic expense of the reforming process, and in some cases, realize thermochemical recuperation (TCR), a form of waste heat recovery where exhaust heat is converted to usable chemical energy. The previous work, however, focused on a relatively light-load engine operating condition of 2000 rpm, 4 bar brake mean effective pressure (BMEP). The present investigation demonstrates that this operating strategy is applicable to higher engine loads, including boosted operation up to 10 bar BMEP.
Technical Paper

Fuel-Lubricant Interactions on the Propensity for Stochastic Pre-Ignition

This work explores the impact of the interaction of lubricant and fuel properties on the propensity for stochastic pre-ignition (SPI). Findings are based on statistically significant changes in SPI tendency and magnitude, as determined by measurements of cylinder pressure. Specifically, lubricant detergents, lubricant volatility, fuel volatility, fuel chemical composition, fuel-wall impingement, and engine load were varied to study the physical and chemical effects of fuel-lubricant interactions on SPI tendency. The work illustrates that at low loads, with fuels susceptible to SPI events, lubricant detergent package effects on SPI were non-significant. However, with changes to fuel distillation, fuel-wall impingement, and most importantly engine load, lubricant detergent effects could be observed even at reduced loads This suggests that there is a thermal effect associated with the higher load operation.
Journal Article

Engine Operating Conditions and Fuel Properties on Pre-Spark Heat Release and SPI Promotion in SI Engines

This work explores the dependence of fuel ignition delay on stochastic pre-ignition (SPI). Findings are based on bulk gas thermodynamic state, where the effects of kinetically controlled bulk gas pre-spark heat release (PSHR) are correlated to SPI tendency and magnitude. Specifically, residual gas and low temperature PSHR chemistry effects and observations are explored, which are found to be indicative of bulk gas conditions required for strong SPI events. Analyzed events range from non-knocking SPI to knocking SPI and even detonation SPI events in excess of 325 bar peak cylinder pressure. The work illustrates that singular SPI event count and magnitude are found to be proportional to PSHR of the bulk gas mixture and residual gas fraction. Cycle-to-cycle variability in trapped residual mass and temperature are found to impose variability in singular SPI event count and magnitude.
Journal Article

Analysis of Cyclic Variability of Heat Release for High-EGR GDI Engine Operation with Observations on Implications for Effective Control

Operation of spark-ignition (SI) engines with high levels of charge dilution through exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) achieves significant engine efficiency gains while maintaining stoichiometric operation for compatibility with three-way catalysts. Dilution levels, however, are limited by cyclic variability - including significant numbers of misfires - that becomes more pronounced with increasing dilution. This variability has been shown to have both stochastic and deterministic components. Stochastic effects include turbulence, mixing variations, and the like, while the deterministic effect is primarily due to the nonlinear dependence of flame propagation rates and ignition characteristics on the charge composition, which is influenced by the composition of residual gases from prior cycles.