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Technical Paper

Tuning of the Engine Control Variables of an Automotive Turbocharged Diesel Engine via Model Based Optimization

The paper deals with the steady-state optimal tuning of control variables for an automotive turbocharged Diesel engine. The optimization analysis is based on an engine simulation model, composed of a control oriented model of turbocharger integrated with a predictive multi-zone combustion model, which allows accounting for the impact of control variables on engine performance, NOx and soot emissions and turbine outlet temperature. This latter strongly affects conversion efficiency of after treatment devices therefore its estimation is of great interest for both control and simulation of tailpipe emissions. The proposed modeling structure is aimed to support the engine control design for common-rail turbocharged Diesel engines with multiple injections, where the large number of control parameters requires a large experimental tuning effort.
Technical Paper

Thermal Management Strategies for SCR After Treatment Systems

While the Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) is actually a quasi-standard equipment in the European Diesel passenger cars market, an interesting solution to fulfill NOx emission limits for the next EU 6 legislation is the application of a Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) system on the exhaust line, to drastically reduce NOx emissions. In this context, one of the main issues is the performance of the SCR system during cold start and warm up phases of the engine. The exhaust temperature is too low to allow thermal activation of the reactor and, consequently, to promote high conversion efficiency and significant NOx concentration reduction. This is increasingly evident the smaller the engine displacement, because of its lower exhaust system temperature (reduced gross power while producing the same net power, i.e., higher efficiency).
Technical Paper

Remote Combustion Sensing Methodology for PCCI and Dual-Fuel Combustion Control

The increasing request for pollutant emissions reduction spawned a great deal of research in the field of innovative combustion methodologies, that allow obtaining a significant reduction both in particulate matter and NOx emissions. Unfortunately, due to their nature, these innovative combustion strategies are very sensitive to in-cylinder thermal conditions. Therefore, in order to obtain a stable combustion, a closed-loop combustion control methodology is needed. Prior research has demonstrated that a closed-loop combustion control strategy can be based on the real-time analysis of in-cylinder pressure trace, that provides important information about the combustion process, such as Start (SOC) and Center of combustion (CA50), pressure peak location and torque delivered by each cylinder. Nevertheless, cylinder pressure sensors on-board installation is still uncommon, due to problems related to unsatisfactory measurement long term reliability and cost.
Journal Article

Real-Time Estimation of Intake O2 Concentration in Turbocharged Common-Rail Diesel Engines

Automotive engines and control systems are more and more sophisticated due to increasingly restrictive environmental regulations. Particularly in both diesel and SI lean-burn engines NOx emissions are the key pollutants to deal with and sophisticated Engine Management System (EMS) strategies and after-treatment devices have to be applied. In this context, the in-cylinder oxygen mass fraction plays a key-role due its direct influence on the NOx formation mechanism. Real-time estimation of the intake O₂ charge enhances the NOx prediction during engine transients, suitable for both dynamic adjustments of EMS strategies and management of aftertreatment devices. The paper focuses on the development and experimental validation of a real-time estimator of O₂ concentration in the intake manifold of an automotive common-rail diesel engine, equipped with turbocharger and EGR system.
Journal Article

Non-Intrusive Methodology for Estimation of Speed Fluctuations in Automotive Turbochargers under Unsteady Flow Conditions

The optimization of turbocharging systems for automotive applications has become crucial in order to increase engine performance and meet the requirements for pollutant emissions and fuel consumption reduction. Unfortunately, performing an optimal turbocharging system control is very difficult, mainly due to the fact that the flow through compressor and turbine is highly unsteady, while only steady flow maps are usually provided by the manufacturer. For these reasons, one of the most important quantities to be used onboard for optimal turbocharger system control is the rotational speed fluctuation, since it provides information both on turbocharger operating point and on the energy of the unsteady flow in the intake and exhaust circuits. This work presents a methodology that allows determining the instantaneous turbocharger rotational speed through a proper frequency processing of the signal coming from one accelerometer mounted on the turbocharger compressor.
Technical Paper

Neural Network Based Models for Virtual NOx Sensing of Compression Ignition Engines

The paper focuses on the experimental identification and validation of different neural networks for virtual sensing of NOx emissions in combustion compression ignition engines (CI). A comparison of several neural network architectures (NN, TDNN and RNN) has been carried out in order to evaluate precision and generalization in dynamic prediction of NOx formation. Furthermore the model complexity (number and types of inputs, neuron and layer number, etc.) has been considered to allow a future ECU implementation and on line training. Suited training procedures and experimental tests are proposed to improve the models. Several measurements of NOx emissions have been performed through different devices applied to the outlet of a EURO 5 Common Rail diesel engine with EGR. The accuracy of the developed models is assessed by comparing simulated and experimental trajectories for a wide range of operating conditions.
Journal Article

Injection Pattern Design for Real Time Control of Diesel Engine Acoustic Emission

Upcoming more stringent emission regulations throughout the world pose a real challenge, especially in regard to Diesel systems for passenger cars, where the need of additional after-treatment has a big impact in terms of additional system costs and available packaging space. Therefore, the need for strategies that allow managing combustion towards lower emissions, that require a precise control of the combustion outputs, is definitely increasing. Acoustic emission of internal combustion engines contains a large amount of information related to engine behavior and working conditions. Mechanical noise and combustion noise are usually the main contributions to the noise produced by an engine. In particular, recent research from the same authors of this paper demonstrated that combustion noise can be used as an indicator of the combustion that is taking place inside the combustion chamber and therefore as a reference for the control strategy.
Technical Paper

Exhaust Gas Turbocharger Speed Measurement Via Acoustic Emission Analysis

The paper presents a non-intrusive, indirect and low-cost methodology for a real time on-board measurement of an automotive turbocharger rotational speed. In the first part of the paper the feasibility to gather information on the turbocharger speed trend is demonstrated by comparing the time-frequency analysis of the acoustic signal with the direct measurement obtained by an optical sensor facing the compressor blades, mounted in the compressor housing of a spark ignited turbocharged engine. In the second part of the paper, a real time algorithm, to be implemented in the engine control unit, is proposed. The algorithm is able to tune on the turbocharger revolution frequency and to follow it in order to extract the desired speed information. The frequency range containing the turbocharger acoustic frequency can be set utilizing a raw estimation of the compressor speed, derived by its characteristic map.
Technical Paper

Estimation of the Engine Thermal State by in-Cylinder Pressure Measurement in Automotive Diesel Engines

International regulations continuously restrict the standards for the exhaust emissions from automotive engines. In order to comply with these requirements, innovative control and diagnosis systems are needed. In this scenario the application of methodologies based on the in-cylinder pressure measurement finds widespread applications. Indeed, almost all engine thermodynamic variables useful for either control or diagnosis can be derived from the in-cylinder pressure. Apart for improving the control accuracy, the availability of the in-cylinder pressure signal might also allow reducing the number of existing sensors on-board, thus lowering the equipment costs and the engine wiring complexity. The paper focuses on the detection of the engine thermal state, which is fundamental to achieve suitable control of engine combustion and after-treatment devices.
Technical Paper

Enhanced Multi-Zone Model for Medium Pressure Injection Spray and Fuel-Wall Impingement in Light-Duty Diesel Engines

Nowadays the high competition reached by the automotive market forces Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) towards innovative solutions. Strict emission standards and fuel economy targets make the work hard to be accomplished. Therefore modern engines feature complex architecture and embed new devices for Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR), turbocharging (e.g. multi-stage compressors), gas after-treatment (e.g. the Selective Catalyst Reduction (SCR)) and fuel injection (either high or low pressure). In this context the Engine Management System (EMS) plays a fundamental role to optimize engine operation. The paper deals with fuel spray and combustion simulation by a multi-zone phenomenological model aimed at the steady-state optimal tuning of the injection pattern.
Technical Paper

Engine Acoustic Emission Used as a Control Input: Applications to Diesel Engines

The need for strategies that allow managing combustion in an adaptive way has recently widely increased. Especially Diesel engines aimed for clean combustion require a precise control of the combustion outputs. Acoustic emission of internal combustion engines contains a lot of information related to engine behavior and working conditions. Mechanical noise and combustion noise are usually the main contributions to the noise produced by an engine. Combustion noise in particular can be used as an indicator of the combustion that is taking place inside the combustion chamber and therefore as a reference for the control strategy. This work discusses the correlations existing between in cylinder combustion and the acoustic emission radiated by the engine and presents a possible approach to use this signal in the engine management system for control purposes.
Technical Paper

Electric Low Pressure Fuel Pump Control for Fuel Saving

The trend of CO2 emission limits and the fuel saving due to the oil price increase are important drivers for engines development. The involved technologies have the aim to improve the global engine efficiency, improving combustion and minimizing energy losses. The engine auxiliary devices electrification (i.e. cooling pump or lubricating pump) is a way to reduce not useful energy consumption, because it becomes possible to control them depending on engine operating point. This kind of management can be applied to the electric low pressure fuel pump. Usually the fuel delivery is performed at the maximum flow rate and a pressure regulator discharges the exceeding fuel amount inside the rail (i.e. gasoline engine) or upstream of the high pressure pump (i.e. common rail diesel engine). At part load, especially in diesel application, the electric fuel pump flow is higher than needed for engine power generation.
Technical Paper

Diesel Engine Acoustic Emission Analysis for Combustion Control

Future regulations on pollutant emissions will impose a drastic cut on Diesel engines out-emissions. For this reason, the development of closed-loop combustion control algorithms has become a key factor in modern Diesel engine management systems. Diesel engines out-emissions can be reduced through a highly premixed combustion portion in low and medium load operating conditions. Since low-temperature premixed combustions are very sensitive to in-cylinder thermal conditions, the first aspect to be considered in newly developed Diesel engine control strategies is the control of the center of combustion. In order to achieve the target center of combustion, conventional combustion control algorithms correct the measured value varying main injection timing. A further reduction in engine-out emissions can be obtained applying an appropriate injection strategy.
Technical Paper

Development of an Urea Supply System for the SCR Catalyst

The increase in the fuel price and more stringent regulations on greenhouse gases (CO2) make the engine compression ignition technology even more attractive in the context of internal combustion engines. This is because the modern turbocharged direct injection engines, with the common rail fuel system, are characterized by high combustion efficiency and power density, that make them particularly suitable both for applications on and off road. On the other hand, the compression ignition engines are subject to a heavy technological developments to meet the more stringent regulations on emissions of exhaust pollutants, especially PM and NOx. The adopted technologies have two main approaches, on the combustion and on the exhaust gas aftertreatment. The measures applied for combustion can reduce emissions, but with the risk of penalizing the other engine performances, such as noise, power output and fuel consumption.
Technical Paper

Development of a Novel Approach for Non-Intrusive Closed-Loop Heat Release Estimation in Diesel Engines

Over the past years, policies affecting pollutant emissions control for Diesel engines have become more and more restrictive. In order to meet such requirements, innovative combustion control methods have currently become a key factor. Several studies demonstrate that the desired pollutant emission reduction can be achieved through a closed-loop combustion control based on in-cylinder pressure processing. Nevertheless, despite the fact that cylinder pressure sensors for on-board application have been recently developed, large scale deployment of such systems is currently hindered by unsatisfactory long term reliability and high costs. Whereas both the accuracy and the reliability of pressure measurement could be improved in future years, pressure sensors would still be a considerable part of the cost of the entire engine management system.
Technical Paper

Development and Validation of a Methodology for Real-Time Evaluation of Cylinder by Cylinder Torque Production Non-Uniformities

Modern internal combustion engine control systems require on-board evaluation of a large number of quantities, in order to perform an efficient combustion control. The importance of optimal combustion control is mainly related to the requests for pollutant emissions reduction, but it is also crucial for noise, vibrations and harshness reduction. Engine system aging can cause significant differences between each cylinder combustion process and, consequently, an increase in vibrations and pollutant emissions. Another aspect worth mentioning is that newly developed low temperature combustion strategies (such as HCCI combustion) deliver the advantage of low engine-out NOx emissions, however, they show a high cylinder-to-cylinder variation. For these reasons, non uniformity in torque produced by the cylinders in an internal combustion engine is a very important parameter to be evaluated on board.
Technical Paper

Development and Experimental Validation of a Control Oriented Model of SCR for Automotive Application

1 The Selective Catalytic reduction (SCR) using urea as reducing agent is currently regarded as the most promising after-treatment technology in order to comply with strict RDE targets for NOX and particulate in Diesel application. Model-based control strategies are promising to satisfy the demands of high NOX conversion efficiency and low tailpipe ammonia slip. This paper deals with the development of a control oriented model of a Cu-zeolite urea-SCR system for automotive Diesel engines. The model is intended to be used for the real-time urea-SCR management, depending on engine NOX emissions and ammonia storage. In order to ensure suitable computational demand for the on-board implementation, a reduced order one-state model of ammonia storage has been derived from a quasi-dimensional four-state model of the urea-SCR plant.
Technical Paper

Control Oriented Modeling of SCR Systems for Automotive Application

In the last decades, NOx emissions legislations for Diesel engines are becoming more stringent than ever before and the selective catalytic reduction (SCR) is considered as the most suitable technology to comply with the upcoming constraints. Model-based control strategies are promising to meet the dual objective of maximizing NOx reduction and minimizing NH3 slip in urea-selective catalytic reduction. In this paper, a control oriented model of a Cu-zeolite urea-SCR system for automotive diesel engines is presented. The model is derived from a quasi-dimensional four-state model of the urea-SCR plant. To make it suitable for the real-time urea-SCR management, a reduced order one-state model has been developed, with the aim of capturing the essential behavior of the system with a low computational burden. Particularly, the model allows estimating the NH3 slip that is fundamental not only to minimize urea consumption but also to reduce this unregulated emission.
Technical Paper

Common Rail Multi-Jet Diesel Engine Combustion Model Development for Control Purposes

Multi-jet injection strategies open significant opportunities for the combustion management of the modern diesel engine. Splitting up the injection process into 5 steps facilitates the proper design of the combustion phase in order to obtain the desired torque level, whilst attempting a reduction in emissions, particularly in terms of NOx. Complex 3-D models are needed in the design stage, where components such as the injector or combustion chamber shape have to be determined. Alternatively, zero-dimensional approaches are more useful when fast interpretation of experimental data is needed and an optimization of the combustion process should be obtained based on actual data. For example, zero-dimensional models allow a quick choice of optimum control settings for each engine operating condition, avoiding the need to test all the possible combinations of engine control parameters.
Technical Paper

Boost Pressure Control in Transient Engine Load with Turbocharger Speed Sensing

The new driving cycles require a greater focus on a wider engine operative area and especially in transient conditions where a proper air path control is a challenging task for emission and drivability. In order to achieve this goal, turbocharger speed measurement can give several benefits during boost pressure transient and for over-speed prevention, allowing the adoption of a smaller turbocharger, that can further reduce turbo-lag, also enabling engine down-speeding. So far, the use of turbocharger speed sensor was considered expensive and rarely affordable in passenger car applications, while it is used on high performance engines with the aim of maximizing engine power and torque, mainly in steady state, eroding the safe-margin for turbocharger reliability. Thanks to the availability of a new cost effective turbocharger speed technology, based on acoustic sensing, turbocharger speed measurement has become affordably also for passengers car application.