Water Injection as an Enabler for Increased Efficiency at High-Load in a Direct Injected, Boosted, SI Engine
In a Spark-Ignited engine, there will come a point, as load is increased, where the unburned air-fuel mixture undergoes auto-ignition (knock). The onset of knock represents the upper limit of engine output, and limits the extent of engine downsizing / boosting that can be implemented for a given application. Although effective at mitigating knock, requiring high octane fuel is not an option for most markets. Retarding spark timing can extend the high load limit incrementally, but is still bounded by limits for exhaust gas temperature, and spark retard results in a notable loss of efficiency. Likewise, enriching the air-fuel mixture also decreases efficiency, and has profound negative impacts on engine out emissions. In this current work, a Direct-Injected, Boosted, Spark-Ignited engine with Variable Valve Timing was tested under steady state high load operation. Comparisons were made among three fuels; an 87 AKI, a 91 AKI, and a 110 AKI off-road only race fuel.