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Technical Paper

A “Dynamic System” Approach for the Experimental Characterization of a Multi-Hole Spray

The analysis of a spray behavior is confined to study the fluid dynamic parameters such as axial and radial velocity of the droplets, size distribution of the droplets, and geometrical aspect as the penetration length. In this paper, the spray is considered like a dynamic system and consequently it can be described by a number of parameters that characterize its dynamic behavior. The parameter chosen to describe the dynamic behavior is the external cone angle. This parameter has been detected by using an experimental injection chamber, a multi-hole (8 holes) injector for GDI applications and recorded by a high-speed C-Mos camera. The images have been elaborated by a fuzzy logic and neural network algorithm and are processed by using a chaos deterministic theory. This procedure carries out a map distribution of the working point of the spray and determines the stable (signature of the spray) and instable behavior.
Journal Article

Analysis of Knock Tendency in a Small VVA Turbocharged Engine Based on Integrated 1D-3D Simulations and Auto-Regressive Technique

In the present paper, two different methodologies are adopted and critically integrated to analyze the knock behavior of a last generation small size spark ignition (SI) turbocharged VVA engine. Particularly, two full load operating points are selected, exhibiting relevant differences in terms of knock proximity. On one side, a knock investigation is carried out by means of an Auto-Regressive technique (AR model) to process experimental in-cylinder pressure signals. This mathematical procedure is used to estimate the statistical distribution of knocking cycles and provide a validation of the following 1D-3D knock investigations. On the other side, an integrated numerical approach is set up, based on the synergic use of 1D and 3D simulation tools. The 1D engine model is developed within the commercial software GT-Power™. It is used to provide time-varying boundary conditions (BCs) for the 3D code, Star-CD™.
Journal Article

Analysis of Particle Mass and Size Emissions from a Catalyzed Diesel Particulate Filter during Regeneration by Means of Actual Injection Strategies in Light Duty Engines

The diesel particulate filters (DPF) are considered the most robust technologies for particle emission reduction both in terms of mass and number. On the other hand, the increase of the backpressure in the exhaust system due to the accumulation of the particles in the filter walls leads to an increase of the engine fuel consumption and engine power reduction. To limit the filter loading, and the backpressure, a periodical regeneration is needed. Because of the growing interest about particle emission both in terms of mass, number and size, it appears important to monitor the evolution of the particle mass and number concentrations and size distribution during the regeneration of the DPFs. For this matter, in the presented work the regeneration of a catalyzed filter was fully analyzed. Particular attention was dedicated to the dynamic evolution both of the thermodynamic parameters and particle emissions.
Technical Paper

Assessment of the New Features of a Prototype High-Pressure “Hollow Cone Spray” Diesel Injector by Means of Engine Performance Characterization and Spray Visualization

The application of more efficient compression ignition combustion concepts requires advancement in terms of fuel injection technologies. The injector nozzle is the most critical component of the whole injection system for its impact on the combustion process. It is characterized by the number of holes, diameter, internal shape, and opening angle. The reduction of the nozzle hole diameter seems the simplest way to promote the atomization process but the number of holes must be increased to keep constant the injected fuel mass. This logic has been applied to the development of a new generation of injectors. First, the tendency to increase the nozzle number and to reduce the diameter has led to the replacement of the nozzle with a circular plate. The vertical movement of the needle generates an annulus area for the fuel delivery on 360 degrees, so controlling the atomization as a function of the vertical plate position.
Technical Paper

CFD Modeling and Validation of the ECN Spray G Experiment under a Wide Range of Operating Conditions

The increasing diffusion of gasoline direct injection (GDI) engines requires a more detailed and reliable description of the phenomena occurring during the fuel injection process. As well known the thermal and fluid-dynamic conditions present in the combustion chamber greatly influence the air-fuel mixture process deriving from GDI injectors. GDI fuel sprays typically evolve in wide range of ambient pressure and temperatures depending on the engine load. In some particular injection conditions, when in-cylinder pressure is relatively low, flash evaporation might occur significantly affecting the fuel-air mixing process. In some other particular injection conditions spray impingement on the piston wall might occur, causing high unburned hydrocarbons and soot emissions, so currently representing one of the main drawbacks of GDI engines.
Technical Paper

CFD Numerical Reconstruction of the Flash Boiling Gasoline Spray Morphology

The numerical reconstruction of the liquid jet generated by a multi-hole injector, operating in flash-boiling conditions, has been developed by means of a Eulerian- Lagrangian CFD code and validated thanks to experimental data collected with schlieren and Mie scattering imaging techniques. The model has been tested with different injection parameters in order to recreate various possible engine thermodynamic conditions. The work carried out is framed in the growing interest present around the gasoline direct-injection systems (GDI). Such technology has been recognized as an effective way to achieve better engine performance and reduced pollutant emissions. High-pressure injectors operating in flashing conditions are demonstrating many advantages in the applications for GDI engines providing a better fuel atomization, a better mixing with the air, a consequent more efficient combustion and, finally, reduced tailpipe emissions.
Journal Article

Capturing Cyclic Variability in SI Engine with Group Independent Component Analysis

Data decomposition techniques have become a standard approach for the analysis of 2D imaging data originating from optically accessible internal combustion engines. In particular, the method of Proper Orthogonal Decomposition (POD) has proven to be a valuable tool for the evaluation of cycle-to-cycle variability based on luminous combustion imaging and particle image velocimetry (PIV) measurements. POD basically permits to characterize the dominant structures of the process under consideration. Recently, an alternative procedure based on Independent Component Analysis (ICA) has been introduced in the engine field. Unlike POD, the method of ICA identifies the patterns corresponding to physical processes that are statistically independent. In this work, a Group-ICA approach is applied to 2D cycle-resolved images of the luminosity emitted by the combustion process. The analysis is meant to characterize cyclic variability of a port fuel injection spark ignition (PFI SI) engine.
Technical Paper

Chaos Theory Approach as Advanced Technique for GDI Spray Analysis

The paper reports an innovative method of analysis based on an advanced statistical techniques applied to images captured by a high-speed camera that allows highlighting phenomena and anomalies hardly detectable by conventional optical diagnostic techniques. The images, previously elaborated by neural network tools in order for clearly identifying the contours, have been analyzed in their time evolution as pseudo-chaotic variables that may have internal periodic components. In addition to the Fourier analysis, tools as Lyapunov and Hurst exponents and average Kω permitted to detect the chaos level of the signals. The use of this technique has permitted to distinguish periodic oscillations from chaotic variations and to detect those parameters that actually determine the spray behavior.
Technical Paper

Characterization of Combustion and Emissions of a Propane-Diesel Blend in a Research Diesel Engine

The interest of the vehicle producers in fulfillment emission legislations without adopting after treatment systems is driving to the use of non-conventional energy sources for modern engines. A previous test campaign dealing with the use of blends of diesel and propane in a CI engine has pointed out the potential of this non-conventional fuel for diesel engines. The soft adaptation of the common rail injection system and the potential benefits, in terms of engine performances and pollutant emissions, encourage the use of propane-diesel blends if an optimization of the injection strategies is performed. In this work, the performances of a propane-diesel mixture in a research diesel engine have been investigated. The injection strategies of Euro 5 calibration have been used as reference for the development of optimized strategies. The aim of the optimization process was to ensure the same engine power output and reduce the pollutant emissions.
Technical Paper

Correlation between Simulated Volume Fraction Burned Using a Quasi-Dimensional Model and Flame Area Measured in an Optically Accessible SI Engine

Multi-fuel operation is one of the main topics of investigative research in the field of internal combustion engines. Spark ignition (SI) power units are relatively easily adaptable to alternative liquid-as well as gaseous-fuels, with mixture preparation being the main modification required. Numerical simulations are used on an ever wider scale in engine research in order to reduce costs associated with experimental investigations. In this sense, quasi-dimensional models provide acceptable accuracy with reduced computational efforts. Within this context, the present study puts under scrutiny the assumption of spherical flame propagation and how calibration of a two-zone combustion simulation is affected when changing fuel type. A quasi-dimensional model was calibrated based on measured in-cylinder pressure, and numerical results related to the two-zone volumes were compared to recorded flame imaging.
Technical Paper

Design for an Optically Accessible Multicylinder High Performance GDI Engine

In this paper, the modifications realized to make optically accessible a commercial high performance spark ignition and direct injection (DI) 4-cylinder engine are reported. The engine has been designed trying to keep as much as possible its thermo-fluid dynamic configuration in order to maintain its performance and emissions. Two optical accesses have been realized in order to interfere as little as possible with the combustion chamber geometry. A first optical access has been achieved in the piston head and a second by inserting an endoscopic fiber probe in the head. Preliminary results demonstrated that this optical assessment responds to the design targets and allowed a characterization of a commercial GDI engine working with homogeneous and stratified charge mode.
Technical Paper

ECN Spray G Injector: Assessment of Numerical Modeling Accuracy

Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) is a leading technology for Spark Ignition (SI) engines: control of the injection process is a key to design the engine properly. The aim of this paper is a numerical investigation of the gasoline injection and the resulting development of plumes from an 8-hole Spray G injector into a quiescent chamber. A LES approach has been used to represent with high accuracy the mixing process between the injected fuel and the surrounding mixture. A Lagrangian approach is employed to model the liquid spray. The fuel, considered as a surrogate of gasoline, is the iso-octane which is injected into the high-pressure vessel filled with nitrogen. The numerical results have been compared against experimental data realized in the optical chamber. To reveal the geometry of plumes two different imaging techniques have been used in a quasi-simultaneous mode: Mie-scattering for the liquid phase and schlieren for the gaseous one.
Technical Paper

Effect of Natural Gas/Hydrogen Blends on Spark Ignition Stoichiometric Engine Efficiency

Hydrogen (H₂) added to natural gas (NG), improves the combustion process of the air-fuel mixture. This gives the potentiality to develop engines with better performance and lower environmental impact. In any case how hydrogen is produced represents a crucial aspect. In general, if H₂ is produced utilizing fossil fuels and not renewable or nuclear sources, the environmental benefit of CO₂ reduction could be reduced. In this paper two engines, a light-duty (LD) and a heavy-duty (HD), were tested in stoichiometric conditions. The engines were fuelled with NG and with two blends of NG with a 20% and a 40% by volume of H₂, respectively named NG/H₂ 20% and NG/H₂ 40%. The light-duty engine was tested at different loads and speeds, with spark advance set by the electronic control unit (ECU). The ECU actuated a retarded ignition, especially at low load. With the heavy-duty engine, the tests were carried out only at high load.
Technical Paper

Experimental Analysis and CFD Simulation of GDI Sprays

Numerical and experimental analyses of hollow cone sprays generated by pressure-swirl injectors for Direct Injection Spark Ignition (DISI) engines have been performed. Spray characteristics have been measured by a gathering and processing system for spray images, including a CCD camera, a frame grabber and a pulsed sheet obtained by the second harmonic of Nd-YAG laser (wavelength 532 nm, width 12 ns, thickness 100 μm). A detailed spatial and temporal characterization of the emerging spray has been carried out showing interesting peculiarities of the jet for different operative conditions. Some results of a work in progress, aiming to select and to validate proper models for the spray development simulation are, also, discussed. Numerical calculations are based on the KIVA 3V code modified in basic spray sub models. Some important physical phenomena are captured in the computations at the backpressure of 0.1 MPa.
Journal Article

Experimental Characterization of High-Pressure Impinging Sprays for CFD Modeling of GDI Engines

Today, Direct-Injection systems are widely used on Spark-Ignition engines in combination with turbo-charging to reduce the fuel-consumption and the knock risks. In particular, the spread of Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) systems is mainly related to the use of new generations of multi-hole, high-pressure injectors whose characteristics are quite different with respect to the hollow-cone, low-pressure injectors adopted in the last decade. This paper presents the results of an experimental campaign conducted on the spray produced by a GDI six-holes injector into a constant volume vessel with optical access. The vessel was filled with air at atmospheric pressure. Different operating conditions were considered for an injection pressure ranging from 3 to 20 MPa. For each operating condition, spray images were acquired by a CCD camera and then post processed to evaluate the spray penetration and cone angles.
Technical Paper

Experimental Characterization of Methane Direct Injection from an Outward-Opening Poppet-Valve Injector

The in-cylinder direct injection of natural gas can be a further step towards cleaner and more efficient internal combustion engines (ICE). However, the injector design and its characterization, both experimentally and by numerical simulation, is challenging because of the complex fluid dynamics related to gas compressibility and the small length scale. In this work, the under-expanded flow of methane from an outward-opening poppet-valve injector has been experimentally characterized by high-speed schlieren imaging. The investigation has been performed at ambient temperature and pressure and different nozzle pressure ratios (NPR) ranging from 10 to 18. The gaseous jet has been characterized in terms of its macroscale parameters. A scaling-law analysis of the results has been performed. The gas-dynamic structure at the nozzle exit has been also investigated.
Technical Paper

Experimental Investigation of a Methane-Gasoline Dual-Fuel Combustion in a Small Displacement Optical Engine

In this paper the methane-gasoline dual fuel combustion was investigated. Gasoline was injected in the intake manifold (PFI fuel), while methane was injected in the combustion chamber (DI fuel), in order to reproduce a stratified combustion. The combustion process and the related engine performance and pollutant emissions were analyzed. The measurements were carried out in an optically accessible small single-cylinder four-stroke engine. It was equipped with the cylinder head of a commercial 250 cc engine representative of the most popular two-wheel vehicles in Europe. Optical measurements were performed to analyze the combustion process with high spatial and temporal resolution. In particular, optical techniques based on 2D-digital imaging were used to follow the flame front propagation and the soot and temperature concentration in the combustion chamber.
Technical Paper

Experimental and Numerical Characterization of Diesel Injection in Single-Cylinder Research Engine with Rate Shaping Strategy

The management of multiple injections in compression ignition (CI) engines is one of the most common ways to increase engine performance by avoiding hardware modifications and after-treatment systems. Great attention is given to the profile of the injection rate since it controls the fuel delivery in the cylinder. The Injection Rate Shaping (IRS) is a technique that aims to manage the quantity of injected fuel during the injection process via a proper definition of the injection timing (injection duration and dwell time). In particular, it consists in closer and centered injection events and in a split main injection with a very small dwell time. From the experimental point of view, the performance of an IRS strategy has been studied in an optical CI engine. In particular, liquid and vapor phases of the injected fuel have been acquired via visible and infrared imaging, respectively. Injection parameters, like penetration and cone angle have been determined and analyzed.
Journal Article

Experimental and Numerical Investigation in a Turbocharged GDI Engine Under Knock Condition by Means of Conventional and Non-Conventional Methods

The present paper deals with a comprehensive analysis of the knocking phenomenon through experiments and numerical simulations. Conventional and non-conventional measurements are performed on a 4-stroke, 4-cylinder, turbocharged GDI engine. The engine exhibits optical accesses to the combustion chamber. Imaging in the UV-visible range is carried out by means of a high spatial and temporal resolution camera through an endoscopic system and a transparent window in the piston head. This last is modified to allow the view of the whole combustion chamber almost until the cylinder walls, to include the so-called eng-gas zones. Optical data are correlated to in-cylinder pressure-based indicated analyses in a cycle resolved approach.
Technical Paper

Experimental and Numerical Investigation of High-Pressure Diesel Sprays with Multiple Injections at Engine Conditions

A numerical methodology to simulate the high pressure spray evolution and the fuel-air mixing in diesel engines is presented. Attention is focused on the employed atomization model, a modified version of the Huh and Gosman, on the definition of a turbulence length scale limiter and of an adaptive local mesh refinement technique to minimize the result grid dependency. All the discussed models were implemented into Lib-ICE, which is a set of libraries and solvers, specifically tailored for engine simulations, which runs under the open-source CFD technology OpenFOAM®. To provide a comprehensive assessment of the proposed methodology, the validation procedure consisted into simulating, with a unique and coherent setup of all models, two different sets of experiments: a non-evaporating diesel fuel spray in a constant-volume vessel with optical access and an evaporating non-reacting diesel fuel spray in an optical engine.