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Journal Article

Utilization of HVO Fuel Properties in a High Efficiency Combustion System: Part 2: Relationship of Soot Characteristics with its Oxidation Behavior in DPF

The present work is a continuation of the earlier published results by authors on the investigation of Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil (HVO) on a High Efficiency Diesel Combustion System (SAE Int. J. Fuels Lubr. Paper No. 2013-01-1677 and JSAE Paper No. 283-20145128). In order to further validate and interpret the previously published results of soot microstructure and its consequences on oxidation behavior, the test program was extended to analyze the impact of soot composition, optical properties, and physical properties such as size, concentration etc. on the oxidation behavior. The experiments were performed with pure HVO as well as with petroleum based diesel and today's biofuel (i.e. FAME) as baseline fuels. The soot samples for the different analyses were collected under constant engine operating conditions at indicated raw NOx emissions of Euro 6 level using closed loop combustion control methodology.
Technical Paper

The Impact of Different Biofuel Components in Diesel Blends on Engine Efficiency and Emission Performance

Within the Cluster of Excellence “Tailor-Made Fuels from Biomass” at RWTH Aachen University, the Institute for Combustion Engines carried out an investigation program to explore the potential of future biofuel components in Diesel blends. In this paper, thermodynamic single cylinder engine results of today's and future biofuel components are presented with respect to their engine-out emissions and engine efficiency. The investigations were divided into two phases: In the first phase, investigations were performed with rapeseed oil methyl ester (B100) and an Ethanol-Gasoline blend (E85). In order to analyze the impact of different fuel blends, mixtures with 10 vol-% of B100 or E85 and 90 vol-% of standardized EN590 Diesel were investigated. Due to the low cetane number of E85, it cannot be used purely in a Diesel engine.
Technical Paper

Tailor-Made Fuels from Biomass: Influence of Molecular Structures on the Exhaust Gas Emissions of Compression Ignition Engines

In order to deeply investigate and improve the complete path from biofuel production to combustion, the cluster of excellence “Tailor-Made Fuels from Biomass” was installed at RWTH Aachen University in 2007. Recently, new pathways have been discovered to synthesize octanol [1] and di-n-butylether (DNBE). These molecules are identical in the number of included hydrogen, oxygen and carbon atoms, but differ in the molecular structure: for octanol, the oxygen atom is at the end of the molecule, whereas for DNBE it is located in the middle. In this paper the utilization of octanol and DNBE in a state-of-the-art single cylinder diesel research engine will be discussed. The major interest has been on engine emissions (NOx, PM, HC, CO, noise) compared to conventional diesel fuel.
Journal Article

Potential of Cellulose-Derived Biofuels for Soot Free Diesel Combustion

Today's biofuels require large amounts of energy in the production process for the conversion from biomass into fuels with conventional properties. To reduce the amounts of energy needed, future fuels derived from biomass will have a molecular structure which is more similar to the respective feedstock. Butyl levulinate can be gained easily from levulinic acid which is produced by acid hydrolysis of cellulose. Thus, the Institute for Combustion Engines at RWTH Aachen University carried out a fuel investigation program to explore the potential of this biofuel compound, as a candidate for future compression ignition engines to reduce engine-out emissions while maintaining engine efficiency and an acceptable noise level. Previous investigations identified most desirable fuel properties like a reduced cetane number, an increased amount of oxygen content and a low boiling temperature for compression ignition engine conditions.
Technical Paper

Performance and Emissions of Lignin and Cellulose Based Oxygenated Fuels in a Compression-Ignition Engine

Lignocellulosic biomass consists of (hemi-) cellulose and lignin. Accordingly, an integrated biorefinery will seek to valorize both streams into higher value fuels and chemicals. To this end, this study evaluated the overall combustion performance of both cellulose- and lignin derivatives, namely the high cetane number (CN) di-n-butyl ether (DnBE) and low CN anisole, respectively. Said compounds were blended both separately and together with EN590 diesel. Experiments were conducted in a single cylinder compression ignition engine, which has been optimized for improved combustion characteristics with respect to low emission levels and at the same time high fuel efficiency. The selected operating conditions have been adopted from previous “Tailor-Made Fuels from Biomass (TMFB)” work.
Journal Article

Optimization of Diesel Combustion and Emissions with Tailor-Made Fuels from Biomass

In order to thoroughly investigate and improve the path from biofuel production to combustion, the Cluster of Excellence “Tailor-Made Fuels from Biomass” was installed at RWTH Aachen University in 2007. Since then, a variety of fuel candidates have been investigated. In particular, 2-methyl tetrahydrofurane (2-MTHF) has shown excellent performance w.r.t. the particulate (PM) / NOx trade-off [1]. Unfortunately, the long ignition delay results in increased HC-, CO- and noise emissions. To overcome this problem, the addition of di-n-butylether (DNBE, CN ∼ 100) to 2-MTHF was analyzed. By blending these two in different volumetric shares, the effects of the different mixture formation and combustion characteristics, especially on the HC-, CO- and noise emissions, have been carefully analyzed. In addition, the overall emission performance has been compared to EN590 diesel.
Technical Paper

Optimization of Diesel Combustion and Emissions with Newly Derived Biogenic Alcohols

Modern biofuels offer the potential to decrease engine out emissions while at the same time contributing to a reduction of greenhouse gases produced from individual mobility. In order to deeply investigate and improve the complete path from biofuel production to combustion, in 2007 the cluster of excellence “Tailor-Made Fuels from Biomass” was installed at RWTH Aachen University. Since then, a whole variety of possible fuel candidates have been identified and investigated. In particular oxygenated fuels (e.g. alcohols, furans) have proven to be beneficial regarding the particulate matter (PM)/ NOx trade-off [1, 2, 3] in diesel-type combustion. Alcohols that provide a longer ignition delay than diesel might behave even better with regard to this trade-off due to higher homogenization of the mixture. Recent studies carried out within the Cluster of Excellence have discovered new pathways to derive 1-octanol from biomass [4], which features a derived cetane number (DCN) of 39.
Technical Paper

Optical Spray Investigations on OME3-5 in a Constant Volume High Pressure Chamber

Oxygenated fuels such as polyoxymethylene dimethyl ethers (OME) offer a chance to significantly decrease emissions while switching to renewable fuels. However, compared to conventional diesel fuel, they have lower heating values and different evaporation behaviors which lead to differences in spray, mixture formation as well as ignition delay. In order to determine the mixture formation characteristics and the combustion behavior of neat OME3-5, optical investigations have been carried out in a high-pressure-chamber using shadowgraphy, mie-scatterlight and OH-radiation recordings. Liquid penetration length, gaseous penetration length, lift off length, spray cone angle and ignition delay have been determined and compared to those measured with diesel-fuel over a variety of pressures, temperatures, rail pressures and injection durations.
Technical Paper

Optical Investigation on the Origin of Pre-Ignition in a Highly Boosted SI Engine Using Bio-Fuels

Downsizing of highly-boosted spark-ignition (SI) engines is limited by pre-ignition, which may lead to extremely strong knocking and severe engine damage. Unfortunately, the concerning mechanisms are generally not yet fully understood, although several possible reasons have been suggested in previous research. The primary objective of the present paper is to investigate the influence of molecular bio-fuel structure on the locations of pre-ignition in a realistic, highly-charged SI engine at low speed by state-of-the-art optical measurements. The latter are conducted by using a high-sensitivity UV endoscope and an intensified high-speed camera. Two recently tested bio-fuels, namely tetrahydro-2-methylfuran (2-MTHF) and 2-methylfuran (2-MF), are investigated. Compared to conventional fuels, they have potential advantages in the well-to-tank balance. In addition, both neat ethanol and conventional gasoline are used as fuels.
Journal Article

On the Potential of Oxygenated Fuels as an Additional Degree of Freedom in the Mixture Formation in Direct Injection Diesel Engines

The current and future restrictions on pollutant emissions from internal combustion engines require a holistic investigation of the abilities of alternative fuels to optimize the combustion process and ensure cleaner combustion. In this regard, the Tailor-made Fuels from Biomass (TMFB) Cluster at Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule (RWTH) Aachen University aims at designing production processes for biofuels as well as fuels optimal for use in internal combustion engines. The TMFB Cluster's scientific approach considers the molecular structure of the fuels as an additional degree of freedom for the optimization of both the production pathways and the combustion process of such novel biofuels. Thus, the model-based specification of target parameters is of the utmost importance to improve engine combustion performance and to send feedback information to the biofuel production process.
Journal Article

Nitric Oxide Measurements in the Core of Diesel Jets Using a Biofuel Blend

Maintaining low NOx emissions over the operating range of diesel engines continues to be a major issue. However, optical measurements of nitric oxide (NO) are lacking particularly in the core of diesel jets, i.e. in the region of premixed combustion close to the spray axis. This is basically caused by severe attenuation of both the laser light and fluorescent emission in laser-induced fluorescence (LIF) applications. Light extinction is reduced by keeping absorption path lengths relatively short in this work, by investigating diesel jets in a combustion vessel instead of an engine. Furthermore, the NO-detection threshold is improved by conducting 1-d line measurements instead of 2-d imaging. The NO-LIF data are corrected for light attenuation by combined LIF and spontaneous Raman scattering. The quantified maximum light attenuation is significantly lower than in comparable previous works, and its wavelength dependence is surprisingly weak.
Journal Article

Mixture-Formation Analysis by PLIF in an HSDI Diesel Engine Using C8-Oxygenates as the Fuel

With increasing interest in new biofuel candidates, 1-octanol and di-n-butylether (DNBE) were presented in recent studies. Although these molecular species are isomers, their properties are substantially different. In contrast to DNBE, 1-octanol is almost a gasoline-type fuel in terms of its auto-ignition quality. Thus, there are problems associated with engine start-up for neat 1-octanol. In order to find a suitable glow-plug position, mixture formation is studied in the cylinder under almost idle operating conditions in the present work. This is conducted by planar laser-induced fluorescence in a high-speed direct-injection optical diesel engine. The investigated C8-oxygenates are also significantly different in terms of their evaporation characteristics. Thus, in-cylinder mixture formation of these two species is compared in this work, allowing conclusions on combustion behavior and exhaust emissions.
Technical Paper

Integrated Air Supply and Humidification Concepts for Fuel Cell Systems

In this paper different air management system concepts including mechanical superchargers and turbochargers are analysed with regard to their suitability for fuel cell applications. Therefore a simulation model which takes the main mass, energy and heat flows in the fuel cell system including fuel evaporation, reformer, gas cleaning, humidification, burner and compressor/expander unit into account was setup. For a PEM system with methanol steam reformer the best system efficiencies at rated power can be achieved with a turbocharger in combination with a tailgas burner for operating pressures between 2.5 and 2.8 bar. For pure hydrogen systems the best system efficiency is obtained with an electric driven supercharger for a maximum pressure of 2 bar and an appropriate pressure strategy during part load operation in the complete operating range. The increase of system efficiency for pressurized stack operation is mainly attributed to advantages with regard to water management.
Journal Article

Influence of Ethanol Blends on Low Speed Pre-Ignition in Turbocharged, Direct-Injection Gasoline Engines

Modern combustion engines must meet increasingly higher requirements concerning emission standards, fuel economy, performance characteristics and comfort. Especially fuel consumption and the related CO2 emissions were moved into public focus within the last years. One possibility to meet those requirements is downsizing. Engine downsizing is intended to achieve a reduction of fuel consumption through measures that allow reducing displacement while simultaneously keeping or increasing power and torque output. However, to reach that goal, downsized engines need high brake mean effective pressure levels which are well in excess of 20bar. When targeting these high output levels at low engine speeds, undesired combustion events with high cylinder peak pressures can occur that can severely damage the engine. These phenomena, typically called low speed pre-ignition (LSPI), set currently an undesired limit to downsizing.
Journal Article

Impact of Biomass-Derived Fuels on Soot Oxidation and DPF Regeneration Behavior

To comply with the new regulations on particulate matter emissions, the manufacturers of light-duty as well as heavy-duty vehicles more commonly use diesel particulate filters (DPF). The regeneration of DPF depends to a significant extent on the properties of the soot stored. Within the Cluster of Excellence "Tailor-Made Fuels from Biomass (TMFB)" at RWTH Aachen University, the Institute for Combustion Engines carried out a detailed investigation program to explore the potential of future biofuel candidates for optimized combustion systems. The experiments for particulate measurements and analysis were conducted on a EURO 6-compliant High Efficiency Diesel Combustion System (HECS) with petroleum-based diesel fuel as reference and a today's commercial biofuel (i.e., FAME) as well as a potential future biomass-derived fuel candidate (i.e., 2-MTHF/DBE). Thermo gravimetric analyzer (TGA) was used in this study to evaluate the oxidative reactivity of the soot.
Technical Paper

Ignition Systems for Highly Diluted Mixtures in SI-Engines

Various advanced ignition systems have been investigated in order to evaluate their efficiency to initiate combustion of highly diluted mixtures in SI-Engines (lean burn and EGR concepts). Experiments have been performed on a single-cylinder engine on basis of a modern 4 valve passenger-car engine. Several levels of tumble flow were provided by means of different intake port configurations. The flame initiation mechanisms of the ignition systems were analyzed with cylinder pressure indication, mass fraction burned calculation and optical investigation of the flow field near the spark plug and the flame kernel. The study shows that transistorized coil ignition systems lead to better flame initiation of lean mixtures than capacitive-discharge ignition systems. Among a variety of standard spark plugs only a plug with thin electrodes and extended gap improves lean operation in comparison to the production J-plug. Surface-gap spark plugs lead to a reduced lean limit.
Technical Paper

Glow-plug Ignition of Ethanol Fuels under Diesel Engine Relevant Thermodynamic Conditions

The requirement of reducing worldwide CO₂ emissions and engine pollutants are demanding an increased use of bio-fuels. Ethanol with its established production technology can contribute to this goal. However, due to its resistive auto-ignition behavior the use of ethanol-based fuels is limited to the spark-ignited gasoline combustion process. For application to the compression-ignited diesel combustion process advanced ignition systems are required. In general, ethanol offers a significant potential to improve the soot emission behavior of the diesel engine due to its oxygen content and its enhanced evaporation behavior. In this contribution the ignition behavior of ethanol and mixtures with high ethanol content is investigated in combination with advanced ignition systems with ceramic glow-plugs under diesel engine relevant thermodynamic conditions in a high pressure and temperature vessel.
Technical Paper

Fuel Property Effects on Emissions and Performance of a Light-Duty Diesel Engine

Increased demand for highly fuel efficient propulsion systems drives the engine development community to develop advanced technologies allowing improving the overall thermal efficiency while maintaining low emission levels. In addition to improving the thermal efficiencies of the internal combustion engine itself the developments of fuels that allow improved combustion as well as lower the emissions footprint has intensified recently. This paper will describe the effects of five different fuel types with significantly differing fuel properties on a state-of-the-art light-duty HSDI diesel engine. The fuels cetane number ranges between 26 and 76. These fuels feature significantly differing boiling characteristics as well as heating values. The fuel selection also contains one pure biodiesel (SME - Soy Methyl Ester). This study was conducted in part load and full load operating points using a state of the art HSDI diesel engine.
Technical Paper

Fuel Effects on Low Temperature Combustion in a Light-Duty Diesel Engine

Effects of six different fuels on low temperature premixed compression ignition (PCI) combustion were experimentally investigated in this paper with a light-duty HSDI engine. The PCI combustion concept reduces NOx and smoke emissions simultaneously by low temperature and premixed combustion, respectively. To achieve low temperature and premixed combustion, the ignition delay is prolonged and the injection duration is shortened. Six fuels were chosen to examine the influence of cetane number (CN) and other fuel properties on low temperature PCI combustion. The fuel selection also included a pure Gas- to-Liquid (GTL) fuel and a blend of base diesel and 20% soy based biodiesel (B20). Fuel effects were studied over a matrix of seven part load points in the low temperature combustion mode. The seven part load points were specified by engine speed (RPM) and brake mean effective pressure (BMEP).
Technical Paper

Effects of Biofuels on the Mixture Formation and Ignition Process in Diesel-Like Jets

In order to reduce engine out CO2 emissions it is a main subject to find new alternative fuels out of renewable sources. For this paper, several fuels were selected which can be produced out of biomass or with hydrogen which is generated directly via electrolysis with electricity from renewable sources. All fuels are compared to conventional diesel fuel and two diesel surrogates. It is well known that there can be a large effect of fuel properties on mixture formation and combustion, which may result in a completely different engine performance compared to the operation with conventional diesel fuels. Mixture formation and ignition behavior can also largely affect the pollutant formation. The knowledge of the combustion behavior is also important to design new engine geometries or implement new calibrations for an existing engine. The fuel properties of the investigated fuels comprise a large range, for example in case of the derived cetane number, from below 30 up to 100.