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Journal Article

The Particle Emissions Characteristics of a Light Duty Diesel Engine with 10% Alternative Fuel Blends

In this study, the particle emission characteristics of 10% alternative diesel fuel blends (Rapeseed Methyl Ester and Gas-to-Liquid) were investigated through the tests carried out on a light duty common-rail Euro 4 diesel engine. Under steady engine conditions, the study focused on particle number concentration and size distribution, to comply with the particle metrics of the European Emission Regulations (Regulation NO 715/2007, amended by 692/2008 and 595/2009). The non-volatile particle characteristics during the engine warming up were also investigated. They indicated that without any modification to the engine, adding selected alternative fuels, even at a low percentage, can result in a noticeable reduction of the total particle numbers; however, the number of nucleation mode particles can increase in certain cases.
Technical Paper

The Particle Emission Characteristics of a Light Duty Diesel Engine by Using Different Pilot Injections

Pilot injection has been used widely in diesel engines for its NOx and noise reducing characteristics. In this paper, its impacts to the particle emissions were studied using a light-duty common-rail Euro 4 diesel engine with different pilot injection strategies. Three steady-state engine modes were selected from the EU legislative diesel engine test cycle to represent low, medium and high engine speeds and loads. The quantities and injection timings of the pilot injection strategies were then varied. The particle number concentration and size distributions were investigated along with the smoke and regulated gas emissions such as the NOx trade-off. These results indicate how a pilot injection alongside a main injection can increase the particle size compared to a single main injection event. Furthermore, the split injection was closely related to the engine mode.
Journal Article

The Effect of Exhaust Throttling on HCCI - Alternative Way to Control EGR and In-Cylinder Flow

Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) has emerged as a promising technology for reduction of exhaust emissions and improvement of fuel economy of internal combustion engines. There are generally two proposed methods of realizing the HCCI operation. The first is through the control of gas temperature in the cylinder and the second is through the control of chemical reactivity of the fuel and air mixture. EGR trapping, i.e., recycling a large quantity of hot burned gases by using special valve-train events (e.g. negative valve overlap), seems to be practical for many engine configurations and can be combined with any of the other HCCI enabling technologies. While this method has been widely researched, it is understood that the operating window of the HCCI engine with negative valve overlap is constrained, and the upper and lower load boundaries are greatly affected by the in-cylinder temperature.
Technical Paper

Study on an Electronically Controlled Common-Rail Injection System for Liquefied Alternative Fuels

Liquefied alternative fuels offer great potential benefits in reducing exhaust emissions and improving fuel economy of automotive engines. In order to achieve the best performance of the engine running with such fuels, it is critical to have an appropriate fuel system. In the present work, a new electronically controlled common-rail injection system has been specially designed and tested for the direct injection of liquefied alternative fuels, since a conventional pump-line-injector injection system in the conventional diesel engine was not suitable for the purpose. Experimental work has been carried out to examine and improve matching of the fuel injection system on a new fuel injection pump test bench. The preliminary engine bench test has demonstrated that this arrangement meets the requirement for the operating characteristics of a fuel injection system in a direct injection diesel engine operating with dimethyl ether (DME).
Technical Paper

Study of Near Nozzle Spray Characteristics of Ethanol under Different Saturation Ratios

Atomization of fuel sprays is a key factor in controlling the combustion quality in the direct-injection engines. In this present work, the effect of saturation ratio (Rs) on the near nozzle spray patterns of ethanol was investigated using an ultra-high speed imaging technique. The Rs range covered both flash-boiling and non-flash boiling regions. Ethanol was injected from a single-hole injector into an optically accessible constant volume chamber at a fixed injection pressure of 40 MPa with different fuel temperatures and back pressures. High-speed imaging was performed using an ultrahigh speed camera (1 million fps) coupled with a long-distance microscope. Under non-flash boiling conditions, the effect of Rs on fuel development was small but observable. Clear fuel collision can be observed at Rs=1.5 and 1.0. Under the flash boiling conditions, near-nozzle spray patterns were significant different from the non-flash boiling ones.
Technical Paper


There are considerable diversities in the techniques used for the steady flow testing of engine cylinder heads, and this paper presents and discusses the important issues involved in the flow bench experiment. The work aims to provide information necessary for setting up or upgrading the experimental system of cylinder head testing. The definitions of discharge/flow coefficients and swirl/tumble ratios are compared and examined, followed by the principles of selecting the test conditions such as pressure drop and flow rate. Techniques for measuring the angular flow momentum in cylinders are discussed and the link between the steady flow parameters and the engine combustion performance is highlighted. Some conclusions and recommendations are drawn from the discussion.
Technical Paper

Phenomenology of EGR in a Light Duty Diesel Engine Fuelled with Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil (HVO), Used Vegetable Oil Methyl Ester (UVOME) and Their Blends

HVO contains paraffin only and UVOME is methyl ester with long chain alkyl while mineral diesel is complex compound and contains lots of aromatic and Naphthenic. This paper compares the effects of EGR on the two different types of biodiesels blends compared to diesel. The combustion performance and emissions of biodiesel blends of UVOME and HVO were investigated in a turbocharged direct injection V6 diesel engine with EGR swept from 0% to the calibration setting for diesel. The EGR sweep tests with increment of 5% were conducted at the engine speed of 1500 RPM for the load of between 72 Nm to 143 Nm, using sulfur-free diesel blended with UVOME and HVO at 30% and 60% by volume respectively. As the EGR rate was increased, the brake specific fuel consumption (BSFC) for each fuel was reduced at lower load but increased at higher load. The BSFC of mineral diesel was lower than UVOME blends and similar to the HVO blends.
Technical Paper

Particulate Emissions from a Gasoline Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition Engine

Particulate Emissions from Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) combustion are routinely assumed to be negligible. It is shown here that this is not the case when HCCI combustion is implemented in a direct injection gasoline engine. The conditions needed to sustain HCCI operation were realized using the negative valve overlap method for trapping high levels of residual exhaust gases in the cylinder. Measurements of emitted particle number concentration and electrical mobility diameter were made with a Cambustion DMS500 over the HCCI operating range possible with this hardware. Emissions of oxides of nitrogen, carbon monoxide and unburned hydrocarbons were also measured. These data are presented and compared with similar measurements made under conventional spark ignition (SI) operation in the same engine. Under both SI and HCCI operation, a significant accumulation mode was detected with particle equivalent diameters between 80 and 100 nm.
Technical Paper

Optical Sensor for the Needle Lift Detection in the Common Rail Injector

The detection of needle displacement within a Common Rail injector is a crucial step to suitably characterize the behaviour of an injector. The needle motion is traditionally measured by means of an eddy current sensor. Apart from its high cost, scientific literature highlights its drawbacks, such as the introduction of mechanical weakness on the control piston as well as the electromagnetic disturbance affecting data acquisition. In order to provide an improved quality of signal, other solutions have been developed, which require a large number of components, leading to increased layout complexity. This layout can create a packing issue while mounting the sensor on the test rig. A novel sensor (UK Patent Application No.1819731.9) using fibre optic cable has been designed and built to overcome the limitations typically associated with needle displacement transducers.
Technical Paper

Operating Characteristics of a Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition Engine with Cam Profile Switching - Simulation Study

A single zone combustion model based on a chemical kinetic solver has been combined with a one-dimension thermo/gas dynamic engine simulation code to study the operating characteristics of a V6 engine in which Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) operation (also referred to as ‘Controlled Auto-ignition” CAI) is enabled by a cam profile switching (CPS) system with negative valve overlap. An operational window within which HCCI combustion is possible has been identified and the limit of HCCI operating region for varied valve lift possibilities is explored. The mechanisms and potential fuel economy improvements within the HCCI envelope are studied and modelled results compared against data from similar engines. It is shown that for the best fuel economy the valve timing strategy needs to be selected very carefully, despite the engine's capability to operate at a range of valve timing combinations.
Technical Paper

Modelling of HCCI Engines: Comparison of Single-zone, Multi-zone and Test Data

This paper presents a modeling study of a gasoline HCCI engine using a single-zone and a multi-zone engine combustion models coupled with the CHEMKIN chemical kinetics solver for the closed part of the cycle. These combustion models are subsequently combined with a 1-D gas dynamics engine cycle simulation code which calculates the engine gas exchange to supply the boundary conditions for the in-cylinder simulation and also predicts engine performance. The simulated in-cylinder pressure history and charge composition at the time of exhaust valve opening are compared with the data from a parallel engine experimental project. Although the single-zone model is useful for parameter studies by predicting the trend of auto-ignition timing variations as the result of the effect of engine operating conditions, the matching of simulated and test data is good perhaps only if the mixture and temperature distributions in the cylinder are uniform.
Journal Article

Low Ambient Temperature Effects on a Modern Turbocharged Diesel engine running in a Driving Cycle

Engine transient operation has attracted a lot of attention from researchers due to its high frequency of occurrence during daily vehicle operation. More emissions are expected compared to steady state operating conditions as a result of the turbo-lag problem. Ambient temperature has significant influences on engine transients especially at engine start. The effects of ambient temperature on engine-out emissions under the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) are investigated in this study. The transient engine scenarios were carried out on a modern 3.0 L, V6 turbocharged common rail diesel engine fuelled with winter diesel in a cold cell within the different ambient temperature ranging between +20 °C and −7 °C. The engine with fuel, coolant, combustion air and lubricating oil were soaked and maintained at the desired test temperatures during the transient scenarios.
Technical Paper

Investigation on the Performance of Diesel Oxidation Catalyst during Cold Start at L ow Temperature Conditions

Cold start is a critical operating condition for diesel engines because of the pollutant emissions produced by the unstable combustion and non-performance of after-treatment at lower temperatures. In this research investigation, a light-duty turbocharged diesel engine equipped with a common rail injection system was tested on a transient engine testing bed to study the starting process in terms of engine performance and emissions. The engine (including engine coolant, engine oil and fuel) was soaked in a cold cell at −7°C for at least 8 hours before starting the test. The engine operating parameters such as engine speed, air/fuel ratio, and EGR rate were recorded during the tests. Pollutant emissions (Hydrocarbon (HC), NOx, and particles both in mode of nucleation and accumulation) were measured before and after the Diesel Oxidation Catalyst (DOC). The results show that conversion efficiency of NOx was higher during acceleration period at −7°C start than the case of 20°C start.
Technical Paper

Investigation of VVT and spark timing on combustion and particle emission from a GDI Engine during transient operation

Transient operation is frequently used by vehicle engines and the exhaust emissions from the engine are mostly higher than those under the steady station. An experimental study has been conducted to investigate the effect of various valve timings and spark timings on combustion characteristics and particle emissions from a modern 3.0-liter Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) passenger car engine. The transient condition was simulated by load increase from 5% to 15% at a constant engine speed with different settings of valve timings and spark timings. The transient particle emission measurement was carried out by a Cambustion DMS500 particulate analyser. The combustion characteristics of the engine during transient operation including cycle-by-cycle combustion variations were analyzed. The time-resolved particle number, particulate mass and particle size distribution were compared and analyzed between different engine settings.
Journal Article

Investigation into Light Duty Dieseline Fuelled Partially-Premixed Compression Ignition Engine

Conventional diesel-fuelled Partially Premixed Compression Ignition (PPCI) engines have been investigated by many researchers previously. However, the ease of ignition and difficulty of vaporization of diesel fuel make it imperfect for PPCI combustion. In this study, dieseline (blending of diesel and gasoline) was looked into as the Partially Premixed Compression Ignition fuel for its combination of two fuel properties, ignition-delay-increasing characteristics and higher volatility, which make it more suitable for PPCI combustion compared to neat diesel. A series of tests were carried out on a Euro IV light-duty common-rail diesel engine, and different engine modes, from low speed/load to middle speed/load were all tested, under which fuel blend ratios, EGR rates, injection timings and quantities were varied. The emissions, fuel consumption and combustion stability of this dieseline-fuelled PPCI combustion were all investigated.
Technical Paper

Instantaneous PLII and OH* Chemiluminescence Study on Wide Distillation Fuels, PODEn and Ethanol Blends in a Constant Volume Vessel

The combustion characteristics and soot emissions of three types of fuels were studied in a high pressure and temperature vessel. In order to achieve better volatility, proper cetane number and high oxygen content, the newly designed WDEP fuel was proposed and investigated. It is composed of wide distillation fuel (WD), PODE3-6 mixture (PODEn) and ethanol. For comparison, the test on WD and the mixture of PODEn-ethanol (EP) are also conducted. OH* chemiluminescence during the combustion was measured and instantaneous PLII was also applied to reveal the soot distribution. Abel transformation was adopted to calculate the total soot of axisymmetric flame. The results show that WDEP has similar ignition delays and flame lift-off lengths to those of WD at 870-920 K. But the initial ignition locations of WDEP flame in different cycles were more concentrated, particularly under the condition of low oxygen atmosphere.
Technical Paper

Influence of Coolant Temperature on Cold Start Performance of Diesel Passenger Car in Cold Environment

Diesel engines are the versatile power source and is widely used in passenger car and commercial vehicle applications. Environmental temperature conditions, fuel quality, fuel injection strategies and lubricant have influence on cold start performance of the diesel engines. Strategies to overcome the cold start problem at very low ambient temperature include preheating of intake air, coolant, cylinder block. The present research work investigates the effect of coolant temperatures on passenger car diesel engine’s performance and exhaust emission characteristics during the cold start at cold ambient temperature conditions. The engine is soaked in the -7°C environment for 6 hours. The engine coolant is preheated to the desired coolant temperatures of 10 and 20°C by an external heater and the start ability tests were performed.
Technical Paper

In-cylinder Flow with Negative Valve Overlapping - Characterised by PIV Measurement

Negative valve overlapping is widely used for trapping residual burned gas within the cylinder to enable controlled Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI). HCCI has been shown as a promising combustion technology to improve the fuel economy and NOx emissions of gasoline engines. While the importance of in-cylinder flow in the fuel and air mixing process is recognised, the characteristics of air motion with specially designed valve events having reduced valve lift and durations associated with HCCI engines and their effect on subsequent combustion are not yet fully understood. This paper presents an investigation in an optical engine designed for HCCI combustion using EGR trapping. PIV techniques have been used to measure the in-cylinder flow field under motored conditions and a quantitative analysis has been carried out for the flow characterisation with comparison made against the flow in the same engine with conventional valve strategies for SI combustion.
Technical Paper

In-Cylinder Optical Study on Combustion of DMF and DMF Fuel Blends

The bio-fuel, 2,5 - dimethylfuran (DMF) is currently regarded as a potential alternative fuel to gasoline due to the development of new production technology. However, little is known about the flame behavior in an optical engine. In this paper, high speed imaging (with intensifier) was used during the combustion of DMF and its blends with gasoline and ethanol (D50, D85, E50D50 and E85D15) in an SI optical engine. The flame images from the combustion of each fuel were analyzed at two engine loads: 3bar and 4bar IMEP. For DMF, D50 and E50D50, two modes were compared: DI and PFI. The average flame shapes (in 2D) and the average flame speeds were calculated and combined with mass fraction burned (MFB) data. The results show that when using DMF, the rate of flame growth development and flame speed is higher than when using gasoline. The differences in flame speed between DMF and gasoline is about 10% to 14% at low IMEP.
Technical Paper

Improving Cold Start and Transient Performance of Automotive Diesel Engine at Low Ambient Temperatures

Ambient temperature has significant impact on engine start ability and cold start emissions from diesel engines. These cold start emissions are accounted for substantial amount of the overall regulatory driving cycle emissions like NEDC or FTP. It is likely to implement the low temperature emissions tests for diesel vehicles, which is currently applicable only for gasoline vehicles. This paper investigates the potential of the intake heating strategy on reducing the driving cycle emissions from the latest generation of turbocharged common rail direct injection diesel engines at low ambient temperature conditions. For this investigation an air heater was installed upstream of the intake manifold and New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) tests were conducted at -7°C ambient temperature conditions for the different intake air temperatures. Intake air heating reduced the cranking time and improved the fuel economy at low ambient temperatures.