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Technical Paper

An Investigation Into Transient Diesel Spray Development Using High Speed Imaging In A Novel Optical Pressure Chamber

The fuel economy and emissions performance of a Diesel engine is strongly influenced by the fuel injection process. This paper presents early results of an experimental investigation into diesel spray development carried out in a novel in-house developed optical pressure chamber capable of operating at pressure up to 50 bar and temperatures up to 900 K. The spatial evolution of a diesel spray tends to experience many transitory macroscopic phenomena that directly influence the mixing process. These phenomena are not considered highly reproducible and are extremely short lived, hence recording and understanding these transient effects is difficult. In this study, high-speed backlight-illuminated imaging has been employed in order to capture the transient dynamics of a short signal duration diesel spray injected into incremental back pressures and temperatures reaching a maximum of 10 bar and 473 K respectively.
Technical Paper

Aspects of Numerical Modelling of Flash-Boiling Fuel Sprays

Flash-boiling of sprays may occur when a superheated liquid is discharged into an ambient environment with lower pressure than its saturation pressure. Such conditions normally exist in direct-injection spark-ignition engines operating at low in-cylinder pressures and/or high fuel temperatures. The addition of novel high volatile additives/fuels may also promote flash-boiling. Fuel flashing plays a significant role in mixture formation by promoting faster breakup and higher fuel evaporation rates compared to non-flashing conditions. Therefore, fundamental understanding of the characteristics of flashing sprays is necessary for the development of more efficient mixture formation. The present computational work focuses on modelling flash-boiling of n-Pentane and iso-Octane sprays using a Lagrangian particle tracking technique.
Technical Paper

Characterisation of Spray Development from Spark-Eroded and Laser-Drilled Multi-Hole Injectors in an Optical DISI Engine and in a Quiescent Injection Chamber

This paper addresses the need for fundamental understanding of the mechanisms of fuel spray formation and mixture preparation in direct injection spark ignition (DISI) engines. Fuel injection systems for DISI engines undergo rapid developments in their design and performance, therefore, their spray breakup mechanisms in the physical conditions encountered in DISI engines over a range of operating conditions and injection strategies require continuous attention. In this context, there are sparse data in the literature on spray formation differences between conventionally drilled injectors by spark erosion and latest Laser-drilled injector nozzles. A comparison was first carried out between the holes of spark-eroded and Laser-drilled injectors of same nominal type by analysing their in-nozzle geometry and surface roughness under an electron microscope.
Journal Article

Characteristics of Ethanol, Butanol, Iso-Octane and Gasoline Sprays and Combustion from a Multi-Hole Injector in a DISI Engine

Recent pressures on vehicle manufacturers to reduce their average fleet levels of CO2 emissions have resulted in an increased drive to improve fuel economy and enable use of fuels developed from renewable sources that can achieve a net reduction in the CO2 output of each vehicle. The most popular choice for spark-ignition engines has been the blending of ethanol with gasoline, where the ethanol is derived either from agricultural or cellulosic sources such as sugar cane, corn or decomposed plant matter. However, other fuels, such as butanol, have also arisen as potential candidates due to their similarities to gasoline, e.g. higher energy density than ethanol. To extract the maximum benefits from these new fuels through optimized engine design and calibration, an understanding of the behaviour of these fuels in modern engines is necessary.
Technical Paper

Characterization of Flame Development with Hydrous and Anhydrous Ethanol Fuels in a Spark-Ignition Engine with Direct Injection and Port Injection Systems

This paper presents a study of the combustion mechanism of hydrous and anhydrous ethanol in comparison to iso-octane and gasoline fuels in a single-cylinder spark-ignition research engine operated at 1000 rpm with 0.5 bar intake plenum pressure. The engine was equipped with optical access and tests were conducted with both Port Fuel Injection (PFI) and Direct Injection (DI) mixture preparation methods; all tests were conducted at stoichiometric conditions. The results showed that all alcohol fuels, both hydrous and anhydrous, burned faster than iso-octane and gasoline for both PFI and DI operation. The rate of combustion and peak cylinder pressure decreased with water content in ethanol for both modes of mixture preparation. Flame growth data were obtained by high-speed chemiluminescence imaging. These showed similar trends to the mass fraction burned curves obtained by in-cylinder heat release analysis for PFI operation; however, the trend with DI was not as consistent as with PFI.
Technical Paper

Charge Stratification in a 4-Valve SI Engine Through Injection Into One Intake Port with Induced Axial Swirl Within the Cylinder

An arrangement of port - injected, stratified-charge, 4 - valve SI engine is proposed, in which fuel is injected in a thin column from an injector which is angled so that the fuel is deflected by one of the inlet valves onto the combustion chamber surface, at a position close to the central spark plug. The injection takes place towards the end of the induction stroke, and the injector is mounted to the side of one of the intake ports. The second intake port is deactivated at part load to establish an axial swirling motion to stabilise the fuel evaporating from the warm combustion chamber surface. Testing has been performed on a single - cylinder research engine to assess the extent of the stratification by measuring pre - flame hydrocarbon concentrations at various positions around the combustion chamber.
Technical Paper

Combining Unthrottled Operation with Internal EGR under Port and Central Direct Fuel Injection Conditions in a Single Cylinder SI Engine

This experimental work was concerned with the combination of internal EGR with an early inlet valve closure strategy for improved part-load fuel economy. The experiments were performed in a new spark-ignited thermodynamic single cylinder research engine, equipped with a mechanical fully variable valvetrain on both the inlet and exhaust. During unthrottled operation at constant engine speed and load, increasing the mass of trapped residual allowed increased valve duration and lift to be used. In turn, this enabled further small improvements in gas exchange efficiency, thermal efficiency and hence indicated fuel consumption. Such effects were quantified under both port and homogeneous central direct fuel injection conditions. Shrouding of the inlet ports as a potential method to increase in-cylinder gas velocities has also been considered.
Technical Paper

Comparison between Unthrottled, Single and Two-valve Induction Strategies Utilising Direct Gasoline Injection: Emissions, Heat-release and Fuel Consumption Analysis

For a spark-ignition engine, the parasitic loss suffered as a result of conventional throttling has long been recognised as a major reason for poor part-load fuel efficiency. While lean, stratified charge, operation addresses this issue, exhaust gas aftertreatment is more challenging compared with homogeneous operation and three-way catalyst after-treatment. This paper adopts a different approach: homogeneous charge direct injection (DI) operation with variable valve actuations which reduce throttling losses. In particular, low-lift and early inlet valve closing (EIVC) strategies are investigated. Results from a thermodynamic single cylinder engine are presented that quantify the effect of two low-lift camshafts and one standard high-lift camshaft operating EIVC strategies at four engine running conditions; both, two- and single-inlet valve operation were investigated. Tests were conducted for both port and DI fuelling, under stoichiometric conditions.
Technical Paper

Computational Study of Hydrogen Direct Injection for Internal Combustion Engines

Hydrogen has been largely proposed as a possible fuel for internal combustion engines. The main advantage of burning hydrogen is the absence of carbon-based tailpipe emissions. Hydrogen's wide flammability also offers the advantage of very lean combustion and higher engine efficiency than conventional carbon-based fuels. In order to avoid abnormal combustion modes like pre-ignition and backfiring, as well as air displacement from hydrogen's large injected volume per cycle, direct injection of hydrogen after intake valve closure is the preferred mixture preparation method for hydrogen engines. The current work focused on computational studies of hydrogen injection and mixture formation for direct-injection spark-ignition engines. Hydrogen conditions at the injector's nozzle exit are typically sonic.
Technical Paper

Development and Evaluation of a Novel Optical Interface for Spark Ignition Engine Research

A key objective of this research was to develop an interface device to enable visualization of in-cylinder events within a production SI engine operating at normal speeds and loads, without the need for engine modifications. The device was designed to utilize the existing spark plug hole and to be capable of providing in-cylinder illumination, image transmission and a source of ignition. This technical paper presents the results of the initial evaluation of the device. The evaluation of the durability of the device, in terms of its ability to operate as a spark plug and its permissible operating range is presented. In addition, images of events in the cylinder captured using the device are provided.
Journal Article

Development of a Fast-Acting, Time-Resolved Gas Sampling System for Combustion and Fuels Analysis

Development of new fuels and engine combustion strategies for future ultra-low emission engines requires a greater level of insight into the process of emissions formation than is afforded by the approach of engine exhaust measurement. The paper describes the development of an in-cylinder gas sampling system consisting of a fast-acting, percussion-based, poppet-type sampling valve, and a heated dilution tunnel; and the deployment of the system in a single cylinder engine. A control system was also developed for the sampling valve to allow gas samples to be extracted from the engine cylinder during combustion, at any desired crank angle in the engine cycle, while the valve motion was continuously monitored using a proximity sensor. The gas sampling system was utilised on a direct injection diesel engine co-combusting a range of hydrogen-diesel fuel and methane-diesel fuel mixtures.
Technical Paper

Development of a Fuelling System to Reduce Cold-Start Hydrocarbon Emissions in an SI Engine

An air-assisted fuel vaporiser (AAFV), designed to replace the conventional fuelling system has been tested on a 3.0-litre development engine under simulated cold-Start conditions. Providing the cold engine with pre-vaporised fuel removed the need for an enriched mixture during start-up. Comparisons between the AAFV and standard fuelling systems were performed. Engine-out hydrocarbon (HC) exhaust emissions were measured during cold-start and the ensuing two minutes. Fuel spray characterisation was also conducted using a steady flow test rig designed to mimic inlet port conditions of air flow and manifold pressure over a wide range of engine operation.
Technical Paper

Effect of Fuel Properties on Spray Development from a Multi-Hole DISI Engine Injector

Extensive literature exists on spray development, mixing and combustion regarding engine modeling and diagnostics using single-component and model fuels. However, often the variation in data between different fuels, particularly relating to spray development and its effect on combustion, is neglected or overlooked. By injecting into a quiescent chamber, this work quantifies the differences in spray development from a multi-hole direct-injection spark-ignition engine injector for two single-component fuels (iso-octane and n-pentane), a non-fluorescing multi-component model fuel which may be used for in-cylinder Laser Induced Fluorescence experiments, and several grades of pump gasoline (with and without additives). High-speed recordings of the sprays were made for a range of fuel temperatures and gas pressures. It is shown that a fuel temperature above that of the lowest boiling point fraction of the tested fuel at the given gas pressure causes a convergence of the spray plumes.
Technical Paper

Effect of Impinging Airflow on the Near Nozzle Characteristics of a Gasoline Spray from a Pressure-Swirl Atomiser

The effects of impinging airflow on the near nozzle characteristics of an inwardly opening, high pressure-swirl atomiser are investigated in an optically-accessed, steady-state flow rig designed to emulate the intake flow of a typical, side-injected, 4-valve gasoline direct-injection combustion system. The results indicate that the impinging airflow has a relatively minor effect on the initial break-up of the fuel spray. However, the secondary break-up of the spray, i.e. the break-up of liquid ligaments, the spatial distribution of droplets within the spray and the location of the spray within the cylinder are significantly affected by the impinging air.
Journal Article

Effect of the Molecular Structure of Individual Fatty Acid Alcohol Esters (Biodiesel) on the Formation of Nox and Particulate Matter in the Diesel Combustion Process

Biodiesel is a renewable fuel which can be used as a direct replacement for fossil Diesel fuel as a calorific source in Diesel Engines. It consists of fatty acid mono-alkyl esters, which are produced by the trans-esterification reaction of plant oils with monohydric alcohols. The Plant oils and alcohols can both be derived from biomass, giving this fuel the potential for a sustainable carbon dioxide neutral life-cycle, which is an important quality with regard to avoiding the net emission of anthropogenic greenhouse gases. Depending on its fatty ester composition, Biodiesel can have varying physical and chemical properties which influence its combustion behaviour in a Diesel engine. It has been observed by many researchers that Biodiesel can sometimes lead to an increase in emissions of oxides of nitrogen (NOx) compared to fossil Diesel fuel, while emitting a lower amount of particulate mass.
Technical Paper

Effects of Fuel Composition on Mixture Formation in a Firing Direct-Injection Spark-Ignition (DISI) Engine: An Experimental Study using Mie-Scattering and Planar Laser-Induced Fluorescence (PLIF) Techniques

Two-dimensional Mie-scattering and laser-induced fluorescence techniques were applied to investigate the effects of fuel composition on mixture formation within a firing direct-injection spark-ignition (DISI) engine. A comparison was made between the spray characteristics and in-cylinder fuel distributions resulting from the use of a typical multi-component gasoline (European specification premium-grade unleaded), a single-component research fuel (iso-octane), and a three-component research fuel (iso-pentane, iso-octane and n-nonane). Studies were performed at three different injection timings under cold and part-warm conditions. The results indicate that fuel composition affects both the initial spray formation and the subsequent mixture formation process. Furthermore, the sensitivity of the mixing process to the effects of fuel volatility was shown to depend on injection timing.
Technical Paper

Effects of Fuel Injection Pressure in an Optically-Accessed DISI Engine with Side-Mounted Fuel Injector

This paper presents the results of an experimental study into the effects of fuel injection pressure on mixture formation within an optically accessed direct-injection spark-ignition (DISI) engine. Comparison is made between the spray characteristics and in-cylinder fuel distributions due to supply rail pressures of 50 bar and 100 bar subject to part-warm, part-load homogeneous charge operating conditions. A constant fuel mass, corresponding to stoichiometric tune, was maintained for both supply pressures. The injected sprays and their subsequent liquid-phase fuel distributions were visualized using the 2-D laser Mie-scattering technique. The experimental injector (nominally a hollow-cone pressure-swirl design) was seen to produce a dense filled spray structure for both injection pressures under investigation. In both cases, the leading edge velocities of the main spray suggest the direct impingement of liquid fuel on the cylinder walls.
Technical Paper

Effects of Injection Timing on Liquid-Phase Fuel Distributions in a Centrally-Injected Four-Valve Direct-Injection Spark-Ignition Engine

An experimental study was carried out to investigate the effects of fuel injection timing on the spatial and temporal development of injected fuel sprays within a firing direct-injection spark-ignition (DISI) engine. It was found that the structure of the injected fuel sprays varied significantly with the timing of the injection event. During the induction stroke and the early part of the compression stroke, the development of the injected fuel sprays was shown to be controlled by the state of the intake and intake-generated gas flows at the start of injection (SOI).The relative influence of these two flow regimes on the injected fuel sprays during this period was also observed to change with injection timing, directly affecting tip penetration, spray/wall impingement and air-fuel mixing. Later in the compression stroke, the results show the development of the injected fuel sprays to be dominated by the increased cylinder pressure at SOI.
Technical Paper

Effects of Injection Timing on the Exhaust Emissions of a Centrally-Injected Four-Valve Direct-Injection Spark-Ignition Engine

A study to investigate the influence of fuel injection timing on exhaust emissions from a single-cylinder direct-injection spark-ignition (DISI) research engine was performed. Experimental results were obtained for carbon monoxide (CO), unburned hydrocarbon (HC), and oxides of nitrogen (NOx). Images showing the variation of liquid-phase fuel distribution with changing injection timing were obtained in a firing optically-accessed engine of similar design. A correlation between measured emissions and observed liquid-phase fuel distribution was performed. This correlation was supported by development of phenomenological models that permit explanation of the variation of CO, HC, and NOx emissions with changes in air-fuel mixture preparation.
Technical Paper

Engine Testing of Dissolved Sodium Borohydride for Diesel Combustion CO2 Scrubbing

Improvements in the efficiency of internal combustion engines and the development of renewable liquid fuels have both been deployed to reduce exhaust emissions of CO2. An additional approach is to scrub CO2 from the combustion gases, and one potential means by which this might be achieved is the reaction of combustions gases with sodium borohydride to form sodium carbonate. This paper presents experimental studies carried out on a modern direct injection diesel engine supplied with a solution of dissolved sodium borohydride so as to investigate the effects of sodium borohydride on combustion and emissions. Sodium borohydride was dissolved in the ether diglyme at concentrations of 0.1 and 2 % (wt/wt), and tested alongside pure diglyme and a reference fossil diesel. The sodium borohydride solutions and pure diglyme were supplied to the fuel injector under an inert atmosphere and tested at a constant injection timing and constant engine indicated mean effective pressure (IMEP).