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Technical Paper

A Comparison between Different Moving Grid Techniques for the Analysis of the TCC Engine under Motored Conditions

The accurate representation of Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) flows via CFD is an extremely complex task: it strongly depends on a combination of highly impacting factors, such as grid resolution (both local and global), choice of the turbulence model, numeric schemes and mesh motion technique. A well-founded choice must be made in order to avoid excessive computational cost and numerical difficulties arising from the combination of fine computational grids, high-order numeric schemes and geometrical complexity typical of ICEs. The paper focuses on the comparison between different mesh motion technologies, namely layer addition and removal, morphing/remapping and overset grids. Different grid strategies for a chosen mesh motion technology are also discussed. The performance of each mesh technology and grid strategy is evaluated in terms of accuracy and computational efficiency (stability, scalability, robustness).
Technical Paper

A Numerical Investigation on the Potentials of Water Injection as a Fuel Efficiency Enhancer in Highly Downsized GDI Engines

Engine downsizing is gaining popularity in the high performance engine market sector, where a new generation of highly downsized engines with specific power outputs around or above 150 HP/litre is emerging. High-boost and downsizing, adopted to increase power density and reduce fuel consumption, have to face the increased risks of pre-ignition, knock or mega-knock. To counterbalance autoignition of fuel/air mixture, such engines usually operate with high fuel enrichments and delayed (sometimes negative) spark advances. The former is responsible for high fuel consumption levels, while the latter reduces performance and induces an even lower A/F ratio (below 11), to limit the turbine inlet temperature, with huge negative effects on BSFC.
Technical Paper

CFD Analysis and Knock Prediction into Crevices of Piston to Liner Fireland of an High Performance ICE

The paper aims at defining a methodology for the prediction and understanding of knock tendency in internal combustion engine piston crevices by means of CFD simulations. The motivation for the analysis comes from a real design requirement which appeared during the development of a new high performance SI unit: it is in fact widely known that, in high performance engines (especially the turbocharged ones), the high values of pressure and temperature inside the combustion chamber during the engine cycle may cause knocking phenomena. “Standard” knock can be easily recognized by direct observation of the in-cylinder measured pressure trace; it is then possible to undertake proper actions and implement design and control improvements to prevent it with relatively standard 3D-CFD analyses.
Technical Paper

Chemistry-Based Laminar Flame Speed Correlations for a Wide Range of Engine Conditions for Iso-Octane, n-Heptane, Toluene and Gasoline Surrogate Fuels

CFD simulations of reacting flows are fundamental investigation tools used to predict combustion behaviour and pollutants formation in modern internal combustion engines. Focusing on spark-ignited units, most of the flamelet-based combustion models adopted in current simulations use the fuel/air/residual laminar flame propagation speed as a background to predict the turbulent flame speed. This, in turn, is a fundamental requirement to model the effective burn rate. A consolidated approach in engine combustion simulations relies on the adoption of empirical correlations for laminar flame speed, which are derived from fitting of combustion experiments. However, these last are conducted at pressure and temperature ranges largely different from those encountered in engines: for this reason, correlation extrapolation at engine conditions is inevitably accepted. As a consequence, relevant differences between proposed correlations emerge even for the same fuel and conditions.
Journal Article

Critical Aspects on the Use of Thermal Wall Functions in CFD In-Cylinder Simulations of Spark-Ignition Engines

CFD and FE tools are intensively adopted by engine manufacturers in order to prevent thermo-mechanical failures reducing time- and cost-to market. The capability to predict correctly the physical factors leading to damages is hence essential for their application in the industrial practice. This is even more important for last generation SI engines, where the more and more stringent need to lower fuel consumption and pollutant emissions is pushing designers to reduce engine displacement in favor of higher specific power, usually obtained by means of turbocharging. This brings to a new generation of SI engines characterized by higher and higher adiabatic efficiency and thermo-mechanical loads. A recent research highlighted the different behavior of the thermal boundary layer of such engines operated at high revving speeds and high loads if compared to the same engines operated at low loads and revving speeds or even engines with a lower specific power.
Journal Article

Development of a Phenomenological Turbulence Model through a Hierarchical 1D/3D Approach Applied to a VVA Turbocharged Engine

It is widely recognized that spatial and temporal evolution of both macro- and micro- turbulent scales inside internal combustion engines affect air-fuel mixing, combustion and pollutants formation. Particularly, in spark ignition engines, tumbling macro-structure induces the generation of a proper turbulence level to sustain the development and propagation of the flame front. As known, 3D-CFD codes are able to describe the evolution of the in-cylinder flow and turbulence fields with good accuracy, although a high computational effort is required. For this reason, only a limited set of operating conditions is usually investigated. On the other hand, thanks to a lower computational burden, 1D codes can be employed to study engine performance in the whole operating domain, despite of a less detailed description of in-cylinder processes. The integration of 1D and 3D approaches appears hence a promising path to combine the advantages of both.
Journal Article

Development of a RANS-Based Knock Model to Infer the Knock Probability in a Research Spark-Ignition Engine

Engine knock is one of the most limiting factors for modern Spark-Ignition (SI) engines to achieve high efficiency targets. The stochastic nature of knock in SI units hinders the predictive capability of RANS knock models, which are based on ensemble averaged quantities. To this aim, a knock model grounded in statistics was recently developed in the RANS formalism. The model is able to infer a presumed log-normal distribution of knocking cycles from a single RANS simulation by means of transport equations for variances and turbulence-derived probability density functions (PDFs) for physical quantities. As a main advantage, the model is able to estimate the earliest knock severity experienced when moving the operating condition into the knocking regime.
Journal Article

Integrated In-Cylinder / CHT Methodology for the Simulation of the Engine Thermal Field: An Application to High Performance Turbocharged DISI Engines

New SI engine generations are characterized by a simultaneous reduction of the engine displacement and an increase of the brake power; such targets are achieved through the adoption of several techniques such as turbocharging, direct fuel injection, variable valve timing and variable port lengths. This design approach, called “downsizing”, leads to a marked increase in the thermal loads acting on the engine components, in particular on those facing the combustion chamber. Hence, an accurate evaluation of the thermal field is of primary importance in order to avoid mechanical failures. Moreover, the correct evaluation of the temperature distribution improves the prediction of pointwise abnormal combustion onset.
Technical Paper

Investigation of Sub-Grid Model Effect on the Accuracy of In-Cylinder LES of the TCC Engine under Motored Conditions

The increasing interest in the application of Large Eddy Simulation (LES) to Internal Combustion Engines (hereafter ICEs) flows is motivated by its capability to capture spatial and temporal evolution of turbulent flow structures. Furthermore, LES is universally recognized as capable of simulating highly unsteady and random phenomena driving cycle-to-cycle variability (CCV) and cycle-resolved events such as knock and misfire. Several quality criteria were proposed in the recent past to estimate LES uncertainty: however, definitive conclusions on LES quality criteria for ICEs are still far to be found. This paper describes the application of LES quality criteria to the TCC-III single-cylinder optical engine from University of Michigan and GM Global R&D; the analyses are carried out under motored condition.
Technical Paper

Numerical Investigation on the Effects of Water/Methanol Injection as Knock Suppressor to Increase the Fuel Efficiency of a Highly Downsized GDI Engine

A new generation of highly downsized SI engines with specific power output around or above 150 HP/liter is emerging in the sport car market sector. Technologies such as high-boosting, direct injection and downsizing are adopted to increase power density and reduce fuel consumption. To counterbalance the increased risks of pre-ignition, knock or mega-knock, currently made turbocharged SI engines usually operate with high fuel enrichments and delayed (sometimes negative) spark advances. The former is responsible for high fuel consumption levels, while the latter induce an even lower A/F ratio (below 11), to limit the turbine inlet temperature, with huge negative effects on BSFC. A possible solution to increase knock resistance is investigated in the paper by means of 3D-CFD analyses: water/methanol emulsion is port-fuel injected to replace mixture enrichment while preserving, if not improving, indicated mean effective pressure and knock safety margins.
Technical Paper

Refinement of a 0D Turbulence Model to Predict Tumble and Turbulent Intensity in SI Engines. Part I: 3D Analyses

Recently, a growing interest in the development of more accurate phenomenological turbulence models is observed, since this is a key pre-requisite to properly describe the burn rate in quasi-dimensional combustion models. The latter are increasingly utilized to predict engine performance in very different operating conditions, also including unconventional valve control strategies, such as EIVC or LIVC. Therefore, a reliable phenomenological turbulence model should be able to physically relate the actuated valve strategy to turbulence level during the engine cycle, with particular care in the angular phase when the combustion takes place.