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Technical Paper

A Numerical Investigation on Scalability and Grid Convergence of Internal Combustion Engine Simulations

Traditional Lagrangian spray modeling approaches for internal combustion engines are highly grid-dependent due to insufficient resolution in the near nozzle region. This is primarily because of inherent restrictions of volume fraction with the Lagrangian assumption together with high computational costs associated with small grid sizes. A state-of-the-art grid-convergent spray modeling approach was recently developed and implemented by Senecal et al., (ASME-ICEF2012-92043) in the CONVERGE software. The key features of the methodology include Adaptive Mesh Refinement (AMR), advanced liquid-gas momentum coupling, and improved distribution of the liquid phase, which enables use of cell sizes smaller than the nozzle diameter. This modeling approach was rigorously validated against non-evaporating, evaporating, and reacting data from the literature.
Journal Article

CFD-Guided Combustion System Optimization of a Gasoline Range Fuel in a Heavy-Duty Compression Ignition Engine Using Automatic Piston Geometry Generation and a Supercomputer

A computational fluid dynamics (CFD) guided combustion system optimization was conducted for a heavy-duty diesel engine running with a gasoline fuel that has a research octane number (RON) of 80. The goal was to optimize the gasoline compression ignition (GCI) combustion recipe (piston bowl geometry, injector spray pattern, in-cylinder swirl motion, and thermal boundary conditions) for improved fuel efficiency while maintaining engine-out NOx within a 1-1.5 g/kW-hr window. The numerical model was developed using the multi-dimensional CFD software CONVERGE. A two-stage design of experiments (DoE) approach was employed with the first stage focusing on the piston bowl shape optimization and the second addressing refinement of the combustion recipe. For optimizing the piston bowl geometry, a software tool, CAESES, was utilized to automatically perturb key bowl design parameters. This led to the generation of 256 combustion chamber designs evaluated at several engine operating conditions.
Journal Article

CFD-Guided Heavy Duty Mixing-Controlled Combustion System Optimization with a Gasoline-Like Fuel

A computational fluid dynamics (CFD) guided combustion system optimization was conducted for a heavy-duty compression-ignition engine with a gasoline-like fuel that has an anti-knock index (AKI) of 58. The primary goal was to design an optimized combustion system utilizing the high volatility and low sooting tendency of the fuel for improved fuel efficiency with minimal hardware modifications to the engine. The CFD model predictions were first validated against experimental results generated using the stock engine hardware. A comprehensive design of experiments (DoE) study was performed at different operating conditions on a world-leading supercomputer, MIRA at Argonne National Laboratory, to accelerate the development of an optimized fuel-efficiency focused design while maintaining the engine-out NOx and soot emissions levels of the baseline production engine.
Technical Paper

Coupled Eulerian Internal Nozzle Flow and Lagrangian Spray Simulations for GDI Systems

An extensive numerical study of two-phase flow inside the nozzle holes and the issuing jets for a multi-hole direct injection gasoline injector is presented. The injector geometry is representative of the Spray G nozzle, an eight-hole counter-bored injector, from the Engine Combustion Network (ECN). Homogeneous Relaxation Model (HRM) coupled with the mixture multiphase approach in the Eulerian framework has been utilized to capture the phase change phenomena inside the nozzle holes. Our previous studies have demonstrated that this approach is capable of capturing the effect of injection transients and thermodynamic conditions in the combustion chamber, by predicting phenomenon such as flash boiling. However, these simulations were expensive, especially if there is significant interest in predicting the spray behavior as well.
Technical Paper

Cycle-to-Cycle Variations in Multi-Cycle Engine RANS Simulations

Reynolds-averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) modeling is expected to deliver an ensemble-averaged result for the majority of turbulent flows. This could lead to the conclusion that multi-cycle internal combustion engine (ICE) simulations performed using RANS must exhibit a converging numerical solution after a certain number of consecutive cycles. However, for some engine configurations unsteady RANS simulations are not guaranteed to deliver an ensemble-averaged result. In this paper it is shown that, when using RANS modeling to simulate multiple engine cycles, the cycle-to-cycle variations (CCV) generated from different initial conditions at each cycle are not damped out even after a large number of cycles. A single-cylinder GDI research engine is simulated using RANS modeling and the numerical results for 20 consecutive engine cycles are evaluated for two specific operating conditions.
Journal Article

Development of Dual-Fuel Low Temperature Combustion Strategy in a Multi-Cylinder Heavy-Duty Compression Ignition Engine Using Conventional and Alternative Fuels

Low temperature combustion through in-cylinder blending of fuels with different reactivity offers the potential to improve engine efficiency while yielding low engine-out NOx and soot emissions. A Navistar MaxxForce 13 heavy-duty compression ignition engine was modified to run with two separate fuel systems, aiming to utilize fuel reactivity to demonstrate a technical path towards high engine efficiency. The dual-fuel engine has a geometric compression ratio of 14 and uses sequential, multi-port-injection of a low reactivity fuel in combination with in-cylinder direct injection of diesel. Through control of in-cylinder charge reactivity and reactivity stratification, the engine combustion process can be tailored towards high efficiency and low engine-out emissions. Engine testing was conducted at 1200 rpm over a load sweep.
Journal Article

LES of Diesel and Gasoline Sprays with Validation against X-Ray Radiography Data

This paper focuses on detailed numerical simulations of direct injection diesel and gasoline sprays from production grade, multi-hole injectors. In a dual-fuel engine the direct injection of both the fuels can facilitate appropriate mixture preparation prior to ignition and combustion. Diesel and gasoline sprays were simulated using high-fidelity Large Eddy Simulations (LES) with the dynamic structure sub-grid scale model. Numerical predictions of liquid penetration, fuel density distribution as well as transverse integrated mass (TIM) at different axial locations versus time were compared against x-ray radiography data obtained from Argonne National Laboratory. A necessary, but often overlooked, criterion of grid-convergence is ensured by using Adaptive Mesh Refinement (AMR) for both diesel and gasoline. Nine different realizations were performed and the effects of random seeds on spray behavior were investigated.
Technical Paper

Modeling the Dynamic Coupling of Internal Nozzle Flow and Spray Formation for Gasoline Direct Injection Applications

A numerical study has been carried out to assess the effects of needle movement and internal nozzle flow on spray formation for a multi-hole Gasoline Direct Injection system. The coupling of nozzle flow and spray formation is dynamic in nature and simulations with pragmatic choice of spatial and temporal resolutions are needed to analyze the sprays in a GDI system. The dynamic coupling of nozzle flow and spray formation will be performed using an Eulerian-Lagrangian Spray Atomization (ELSA) approach. In this approach, the liquid fuel will remain in the Eulerian framework while exiting the nozzle, while, depending on local instantaneous liquid concentration in a given cell and amount of liquid in the neighboring cells, part of the liquid mass will be transferred to the Lagrangian framework in the form of Lagrangian parcels.
Technical Paper

Multi-Dimensional Modeling and Validation of Combustion in a High-Efficiency Dual-Fuel Light-Duty Engine

Using gasoline and diesel simultaneously in a dual-fuel combustion system has shown effective benefits in terms of both brake thermal efficiency and exhaust emissions. In this study, the dual-fuel approach is applied to a light-duty spark ignition (SI) gasoline direct injection (GDI) engine. Three combustion modes are proposed based on the engine load, diesel micro-pilot (DMP) combustion at high load, SI combustion at low load, and diesel assisted spark-ignition (DASI) combustion in the transition zone. Major focus is put on the DMP mode, where the diesel fuel acts as an enhancer for ignition and combustion of the mixture of gasoline, air, and recirculated exhaust gas. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) is used to simulate the dual-fuel combustion with the final goal of supporting the comprehensive optimization of the main engine parameters.
Technical Paper

Numerical Evaluation of Gasoline Compression Ignition at Cold Conditions in a Heavy-Duty Diesel Engine

Achieving robust ignitability for compression ignition of diesel engines at cold conditions is traditionally challenging due to insufficient fuel vaporization, heavy wall impingement, and thick wall films. Gasoline compression ignition (GCI) has shown good potential to offer enhanced NOx-soot tradeoff with diesel-like fuel efficiency, but it is unknown how the volatility and reactivity of the fuel will affect ignition under very cold conditions. Therefore, it is important to investigate the impact of fuel physical and chemical properties on ignition under pressures and temperatures relevant to practical engine operating conditions during cold weather. In this paper, 0-D and 3-D computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations of GCI combustion at cold conditions were performed.
Journal Article

Numerical Investigation of Two-Phase Flow Evolution of In- and Near-Nozzle Regions of a Gasoline Direct Injection Engine During Needle Transients

This work involves modeling internal and near-nozzle flows of a gasoline direct injection (GDI) nozzle. The Engine Combustion Network (ECN) Spray G condition has been considered for these simulations using the nominal geometry of the Spray G injector. First, best practices for numerical simulation of the two-phase flow evolution inside and the near-nozzle regions of the Spray G injector are presented for the peak needle lift. The mass flow rate prediction for peak needle lift was in reasonable agreement with experimental data available in the ECN database. Liquid plume targeting angle and liquid penetration estimates showed promising agreement with experimental observations. The capability to assess the influence of different thermodynamic conditions on the two-phase flow nature was established by predicting non-flashing and flashing phenomena.
Journal Article

Numerical Investigation of a Gasoline-Like Fuel in a Heavy-Duty Compression Ignition Engine Using Global Sensitivity Analysis

Fuels in the gasoline auto-ignition range (Research Octane Number (RON) > 60) have been demonstrated to be effective alternatives to diesel fuel in compression ignition engines. Such fuels allow more time for mixing with oxygen before combustion starts, owing to longer ignition delay. Moreover, by controlling fuel injection timing, it can be ensured that the in-cylinder mixture is “premixed enough” before combustion occurs to prevent soot formation while remaining “sufficiently inhomogeneous” in order to avoid excessive heat release rates. Gasoline compression ignition (GCI) has the potential to offer diesel-like efficiency at a lower cost and can be achieved with fuels such as low-octane straight run gasoline which require significantly less processing in the refinery compared to today’s fuels.
Technical Paper

Understanding Fuel Stratification Effects on Partially Premixed Compression Ignition (PPCI) Combustion and Emissions Behaviors

Fuel stratification effects on the combustion and emissions behaviors for partially premixed compression ignition (PPCI) combustion of a high reactivity gasoline (research octane number of 80) was investigated using the third generation Gasoline Direct-Injection Compression Ignition (Gen3 GDCI) multi-cylinder engine. The PPCI combustion mode was achieved through a double injection strategy. The extent of in-cylinder fuel stratification was tailored by varying the start of second fuel injection timing (SOIsecond) while the first fuel injection event was held constant and occurred during the intake stroke. Based on the experimental results, three combustion characteristic zones were identified in terms of the SOIsecond - CA50 (crank angle at 50% cumulative heat release) relationship: (I) no response zone (HCCI-like combustion); (II) negative CA50 slope zone: (early PPCI mode); and (III) positive CA50 slope zone (late PPCI mode).