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Journal Article

A Forward-Looking Stochastic Fleet Assessment Model for Analyzing the Impact of Uncertainties on Light-Duty Vehicles Fuel Use and Emissions

Transport policy research seeks to predict and substantially reduce the future transport-related greenhouse gas emissions and fuel consumption to prevent negative climate change impacts and protect the environment. However, making such predictions is made difficult due to the uncertainties associated with the anticipated developments of the technology and fuel situation in road transportation, which determine the total fuel use and emissions of the future light-duty vehicle fleet. These include uncertainties in the performance of future vehicles, fuels' emissions, availability of alternative fuels, demand, as well as market deployment of new technologies and fuels. This paper develops a methodology that quantifies the impact of uncertainty on the U.S. transport-related fuel use and emissions by introducing a stochastic technology and fleet assessment model that takes detailed technological and demand inputs.
Technical Paper

A Model for Converting SI Engine Flame Arrival Signals into Flame Contours

A model which converts flame arrival times at a head gasket ionization probe, used in a spark-ignition engine, into flame contours has been developed. The head gasket was manufactured at MIT using printed circuit board techniques. It has eight electrodes symmetrically spaced around the circumference (top of cylinder liner) and it replaces the conventional head gasket. The model is based on engine flame propagation rate data taken from the literature. Data from optical studies of S.I. engine combustion or studies utilizing optical fiber or ionization probe diagnostics were analyzed in terms of the apparent flame speed and the entrainment speed (flame speed relative to the fluid ahead of the flame). This gives a scaling relationship between the flame speed and the mass fraction burned which is generic and independent of the chamber shape.
Technical Paper

Benefits of a Higher Octane Standard Gasoline for the U.S. Light-Duty Vehicle Fleet

This paper explores the benefits that would be achieved if gasoline marketers produced and offered a higher-octane gasoline to the U.S. consumer market as the standard grade. By raising octane, engine knock constraints are reduced, so that new spark-ignition engines can be designed with higher compression ratios and boost levels. Consequently, engine and vehicle efficiencies are improved thus reducing fuel consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions for the light-duty vehicle (LDV) fleet over time. The main objective of this paper is to quantify the reduction in fuel consumption and GHG emissions that would result for a given increase in octane number if new vehicles designed to use this higher-octane gasoline are deployed. GT-Power simulations and a literature review are used to determine the relative brake efficiency gain that is possible as compression ratio is increased.
Journal Article

Characterizations of Deployment Rates in Automotive Technology

Passenger cars in the United States continue to incorporate increasing levels of technology and features. However, deployment of technology requires substantial development and time in the automotive sector. Prior analyses indicate that deployment of technology in the automotive sector can be described by a logistic function. These analyses refer to maximum annual growth rates as high as 17% and with developmental times of 10-15 years. However, these technologies vary widely in complexity and function, and span decades in their implementation. This work applies regression with a logistic form to a wide variety of automotive features and technologies and, using secondary regression, identifies broader trends across categories and over time.