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Journal Article

A Progress Review on Soot Experiments and Modeling in the Engine Combustion Network (ECN)

The 4th Workshop of the Engine Combustion Network (ECN) was held September 5-6, 2015 in Kyoto, Japan. This manuscript presents a summary of the progress in experiments and modeling among ECN contributors leading to a better understanding of soot formation under the ECN “Spray A” configuration and some parametric variants. Relevant published and unpublished work from prior ECN workshops is reviewed. Experiments measuring soot particle size and morphology, soot volume fraction (fv), and transient soot mass have been conducted at various international institutions providing target data for improvements to computational models. Multiple modeling contributions using both the Reynolds Averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) Equations approach and the Large-Eddy Simulation (LES) approach have been submitted. Among these, various chemical mechanisms, soot models, and turbulence-chemistry interaction (TCI) methodologies have been considered.
Technical Paper

Assessment of the Ignition and Lift-off Characteristics of a Diesel Spray with a Transient Spreading Angle

Multi-hole diesel fuel injectors have shown significant transients in spreading angle during injections, different than past fundamental research using single-hole injectors. We investigated the effect of a this transient spreading angle on combustion parameters such as ignition delay and lift-off length by comparing a three-hole nozzle (Spray B) and single-hole nozzle (Spray A) with holes of the same size and shape as targets for the Engine Combustion Network (ECN). With the temperature distribution for a target plume of Spray B characterized extensively in a constant-volume combustion chamber, the ignition delay and lift-off length were measured and compared. Results show that the lift-off length of Spray B increases and grows by approximately 1.5 mm after the initial stages of ignition, in an opposite trend compared to Spray A where the lift-off length decreases with time.
Journal Article

Automated Detection of Primary Particles from Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM) Images of Soot Aggregates in Diesel Engine Environments

The major challenge of the post-processing of soot aggregates in transmission electron microscope (TEM) images is the detection of soot primary particles that have no clear boundaries, vary in size within the fractal aggregates, and often overlap with each other. In this study, we propose an automated detection code for primary particles implementing the Canny Edge Detection (CED) and Circular Hough Transform (CHT) on pre-processed TEM images for particle edge enhancement using unsharp filtering as well as image inversion and self-subtraction. The particle detection code is tested for soot TEM images obtained at various ambient and injection conditions, and from five different combustion facilities including three constant-volume combustion chambers and two diesel engines.
Technical Paper

Combined Experimental/Numerical Study of the Soot Formation Process in a Gasoline Direct-Injection Spray in the Presence of Laser-Induced Plasma Ignition

Combustion issued from an eight-hole, direct-injection spray was experimentally studied in a constant-volume pre-burn combustion vessel using simultaneous high-speed diffused back-illumination extinction imaging (DBIEI) and OH* chemiluminescence. DBIEI has been employed to observe the liquid-phase of the spray and to quantitatively investigate the soot formation and oxidation taking place during combustion. The fuel-air mixture was ignited with a plasma induced by a single-shot Nd:YAG laser, permitting precise control of the ignition location in space and time. OH* chemiluminescence was used to track the high-temperature ignition and flame. The study showed that increasing the delay between the end of injection and ignition drastically reduces soot formation without necessarily compromising combustion efficiency. For long delays between the end of injection and ignition (1.9 ms) soot formation was eliminated in the main downstream charge of the fuel spray.
Journal Article

Comparison of Diesel Spray Combustion in Different High-Temperature, High-Pressure Facilities

Diesel spray experimentation at controlled high-temperature and high-pressure conditions is intended to provide a more fundamental understanding of diesel combustion than can be achieved in engine experiments. This level of understanding is needed to develop the high-fidelity multi-scale CFD models that will be used to optimize future engine designs. Several spray chamber facilities capable of high-temperature, high-pressure conditions typical of engine combustion have been developed, but because of the uniqueness of each facility, there are uncertainties about their operation. For this paper, we describe results from comparative studies using constant-volume vessels at Sandia National Laboratories and IFP.
Journal Article

Comparison of Near-Field Structure and Growth of a Diesel Spray Using Light-Based Optical Microscopy and X-Ray Radiography

A full understanding and characterization of the near-field of diesel sprays is daunting because the dense spray region inhibits most diagnostics. While x-ray diagnostics permit quantification of fuel mass along a line of sight, most laboratories necessarily use simple lighting to characterize the spray spreading angle, using it as an input for CFD modeling, for example. Questions arise as to what is meant by the “boundary” of the spray since liquid fuel concentration is not easily quantified in optical imaging. In this study we seek to establish a relationship between spray boundary obtained via optical diffused backlighting and the fuel concentration derived from tomographic reconstruction of x-ray radiography. Measurements are repeated in different facilities at the same specified operating conditions on the “Spray A” fuel injector of the Engine Combustion Network, which has a nozzle diameter of 90 μm.
Journal Article

Diesel Spray Ignition Detection and Spatial/Temporal Correction

Methods for detection of the spatial position and timing of diesel ignition with improved accuracy are demonstrated in an optically accessible constant-volume chamber at engine-like pressure and temperature conditions. High-speed pressure measurement using multiple transducers, followed by triangulation correction for the speed of the pressure wave, permits identification of the autoignition spatial location and timing. Simultaneously, high-speed Schlieren and broadband chemiluminescence imaging provides validation of the pressure-based triangulation technique. The combined optical imaging and corrected pressure measurement techniques offer improved understanding of diesel ignition phenomenon. Schlieren imaging shows the onset of low-temperature (first-stage) heat release prior to high-temperature (second-stage) ignition. High-temperature ignition is marked by more rapid pressure rise and broadband chemiluminescence.
Journal Article

Effect of Fuel Volatility and Ignition Quality on Combustion and Soot Formation at Fixed Premixing Conditions

This paper presents experimental results for two fuel-related topics in a diesel engine: (1) how fuel volatility affects the premixed burn and heat release rate, and (2) how ignition quality influences the soot formation. Fast evaporation of fuel may lead to more intense heat release if a higher percentage of the fuel is mixed with air to form a combustible mixture. However, if the evaporation of fuel is driven by mixing with high-temperature gases from the ambient, a high-volatility fuel will require less oxygen entrainment and mixing for complete vaporization and, consequently, may not have potential for significant heat release simply because it has vaporized. Fuel cetane number changes also cause uncertainty regarding soot formation because variable ignition delay will change levels of fuel-air mixing prior to combustion.
Technical Paper

End-of-Injection Over-Mixing and Unburned Hydrocarbon Emissions in Low-Temperature-Combustion Diesel Engines

Although low-temperature combustion (LTC) strategies for compression-ignition engines can achieve very low emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx) and particulate matter (PM) at high efficiency, they typically have increased emissions of other pollutants, including unburned hydrocarbons (UHC). In the current study, the equivalence ratio of mixtures near the injector are quantified under non-combusting conditions by planar laser-Rayleigh scattering (PLRS) in a constant-volume combustion chamber and by planar laser-induced fluorescence (PLIF) of a fuel tracer (toluene) in a single-cylinder direct-injection heavy-duty diesel engine at typical LTC conditions. The optical diagnostic images show that the transient ramp-down at the end of fuel injection produces a low-momentum, fuel-lean mixture in the upstream region of the jet, which persists late in the cycle.
Technical Paper

Experimental Characterization of DI Gasoline Injection Processes

This work investigates the injection processes of an eight-hole direct-injection gasoline injector from the Engine Combustion Network (ECN) effort on gasoline sprays (Spray G). Experiments are performed at identical operating conditions by multiple institutions using standardized procedures to provide high-quality target datasets for CFD spray modeling improvement. The initial conditions set by the ECN gasoline spray community (Spray G: Ambient temperature: 573 K, ambient density: 3.5 kg/m3 (∼6 bar), fuel: iso-octane, and injection pressure: 200 bar) are examined along with additional conditions to extend the dataset covering a broader operating range. Two institutes evaluated the liquid and vapor penetration characteristics of a particular 8-hole, 80° full-angle, Spray G injector (injector #28) using Mie scattering (liquid) and schlieren (vapor).
Technical Paper

Formaldehyde Visualization Near Lift-off Location in a Diesel Jet

Formaldehyde (HCHO) near the lift-off location in a reacting diesel jet was visualized using planar laser-induced fluorescence (PLIF). Simultaneous imaging of OH chemiluminescence identified the high-temperature combustion region (lift-off). Experiments were performed in a constant-volume combustion vessel at ambient gas conditions (temperature and oxygen concentration) that generate no-soot, low-soot and moderate-soot diesel jets during mixing-controlled combustion. For no-soot conditions, results show that HCHO is formed upstream of the lift-off location and is consumed downstream of the lift-off length in fuel-rich premixed reaction zones at the jet center. Despite the fuel-rich combustion, and downstream regions that are surrounded by a high-temperature diffusion flame, there is no detectable PAH formation in the no-soot condition.
Technical Paper

Fuel Effects on Soot Processes of Fuel Jets at DI Diesel Conditions

The effects of fuel composition on soot processes in diesel fuel jets were studied in an optically-accessible constant-volume combustion vessel at experimental conditions typical of a DI diesel. Four fuel blends used in recent engine studies were investigated, including three oxygenates and one diesel reference fuel: (1) T70, a fuel blend containing the oxygenate tetraethoxy-propane; (2) BM88, a fuel blend containing the oxygenate dibutyl-maleate; (3) GE80, a fuel blend containing the oxygenate tri-propylene-glycol-methyl-ether and (4) CN80, a diesel reference fuel composed of an n-hexadecane and heptamethyl-nonane mixture. Measurements of the soot distribution along the axis of quasi-steady fuel jets were performed using laser extinction and planar laser-induced incandescence (PLII) and were compared to previous results using a #2 diesel fuel (D2).
Journal Article

Fundamental Spray and Combustion Measurements of JP-8 at Diesel Conditions

For logistical reasons, the military requires that jet fuel (JP-8, F-34) be used in both jet engines and diesel engines. While JP-8-fueled diesel engines appear to operate successfully in many cases, negative impacts, including engine failures, are occasionally reported. As diesel combustion with JP-8 has not been explored in great detail, fundamental information about JP-8 fuel spray combustion is needed. In this study, we report measurements of liquid-phase penetration length, vapor penetration, and ignition delay made in an optically-accessible combustion vessel over a range of high-temperature, high-pressure operating conditions applicable to a diesel engine. Results show that the liquid-phase penetration of JP-8 is less than that of diesel, owing to the lower boiling point temperatures of JP-8. Despite the more rapid vaporization, the vapor penetration rate of JP-8 matches that of diesel and ignition does not advance.
Technical Paper

Identifying the driving processes of Diesel spray injection through mixture fraction and velocity field measurements at ECN Spray A

Diesel spray mixture formation is investigated at target conditions using multiple diagnostics and laboratories. High speed Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) is used to measure the velocity field inside and outside the jet simultaneously with a new frame straddling synchronisation scheme. The PIV measurements are carried out in the Engine Combustion Network Spray A target conditions, enabling direct comparisons with mixture fraction measurements previously performed in the same conditions, and forming a unique database at diesel conditions. A 1D spray model, based upon mass and momentum exchange between axial control volumes and near-Gaussian velocity and mixture fraction profiles is evaluated against the data.
Journal Article

In-Flame Soot Sampling and Particle Analysis in a Diesel Engine

In-flame soot sampling based on the thermophoresis of particles and subsequent transmission electron microscope (TEM) imaging has been conducted in a diesel engine to study size, shape and structure of soot particles within the reacting diesel jet. A direct TEM sampling is pursued, as opposed to exhaust sampling, to gain fundamental insight about the structure of soot during key formation and oxidation stages. The size and shape of soot particles aggregate structure with stretched chains of spherical-like primary particles is currently an unknown for engine soot modelling approaches. However, the in-flame sampling of soot particles in the engine poses significant challenges in order to extract meaningful data. In this paper, the engine modification to address the challenges of high-pressure sealing and avoiding interference with moving valves and piston are discussed in detail.
Journal Article

Influence of Diesel Injection Parameters on End-of-Injection Liquid Length Recession

Diesel injection parameters effect on liquid-phase diesel spray penetration after the end-of-injection (EOI) is investigated in a constant-volume chamber over a range of ambient and injector conditions typical of a diesel engine. Our past work showed that the maximum liquid penetration length of a diesel spray may recede towards the injector after EOI at some conditions. Analysis employing a transient jet entrainment model showed that increased fuel-ambient mixing occurs during the fuel-injection-rate ramp-down as increased ambient-entrainment rates progress downstream (i.e. the entrainment wave), permitting complete fuel vaporization at distances closer to the injector than the quasi-steady liquid length. To clarify the liquid-length recession process, in this study we report Mie-scatter imaging results near EOI over a range of injection pressure, nozzle size, fuel type, and rate-of-injection shape. We then use a transient jet entrainment model for detailed analysis.
Technical Paper

Jet-Wall Interaction Effects on Diesel Combustion and Soot Formation

The effects of wall interaction on combustion and soot formation processes of a diesel fuel jet were investigated in an optically-accessible constant-volume combustion vessel at experimental conditions typical of a diesel engine. At identical ambient and injector conditions, soot processes were studied in free jets, plane wall jets, and “confined” wall jets (a box-shaped geometry simulating secondary interaction with adjacent walls and jets in an engine). The investigation showed that soot levels are significantly lower in a plane wall jet compared to a free jet. At some operating conditions, sooting free jets become soot-free as plane wall jets. Possible mechanisms to explain the reduced or delayed soot formation upon wall interaction include an increased fuel-air mixing rate and a wall-jet-cooling effect. However, in a confined-jet configuration, there is an opposite trend in soot formation.
Technical Paper

Laser Ignition of Multi-Injection Gasoline Sprays

Laser plasma ignition has been pursued by engine researchers as an alternative to electric spark-ignition systems, potentially offering benefits by avoiding quenching surfaces and extending breakdown limits at higher boost pressure and lower equivalence ratio. For this study, we demonstrate another potential benefit: the ability to control the timing of ignition with short, nanosecond pulses, thereby optimizing the type of mixture that burns in rapidly changing, stratified fuel-air mixtures. We study laser ignition at various timings during single and double injections at simulated gasoline engine conditions within a controlled, high-temperature, high-pressure vessel. Laser ignition is accomplished with a single low-energy (10 mJ), short duration (8 ns) Nd:YAG laser beam that is tightly focused (0.015 mm average measured 1/e₂ diameter) at a typical GDI spark plug location.
Journal Article

Liquid Penetration of Diesel and Biodiesel Sprays at Late-Cycle Post-Injection Conditions

The liquid and vapor-phase spray penetrations of #2 diesel and neat (100%) soybean-derived biodiesel have been studied at late expansion-cycle conditions in a constant-volume optical chamber. In modern diesel engines, late-cycle staged injections may be used to assist in the operation of exhaust stream aftertreatment devices. These late-cycle injections occur well after top-dead-center (TDC), when post-combustion temperatures are relatively high and densities are low. The behavior of diesel sprays under these conditions has not been well-established in the literature. In the current work, high-speed Mie-scatter and schlieren imaging are employed in an optically accessible chamber to characterize the transient and quasi-steady liquid penetration behavior of diesel sprays under conditions relevant for late-cycle post injections, with very low densities (1.2 - 3 kg/m 3 ) and moderately high temperatures (800 - 1400 K).
Technical Paper

Non-Sooting, Low Flame Temperature Mixing-Controlled DI Diesel Combustion

Methods of producing non-sooting, low flame temperature diesel combustion were investigated in an optically-accessible, quiescent constant-volume combustion vessel. Combustion and soot formation processes of single, isolated fuel jets were studied after autoignition and transient premixed combustion and while the injector needle was fully open (i.e., during the quasi-steady mixing-controlled phase of heat-release for diesel combustion).The investigation showed that fuel jets that do not undergo soot formation in any region of the reacting jet and that also have a low flame temperature could be produced in at least three different ways during mixing-controlled combustion: First, using a #2 diesel fuel and an injector tip with a 50 micron orifice, a fuel jet was non-sooting in ambient oxygen concentrations as low as 10% (simulating the use of EGR) for typical diesel ambient temperatures (1000 K) and densities.