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Technical Paper

2-Stroke CAI Operation on a Poppet Valve DI Engine Fuelled with Gasoline and its Blends with Ethanol

Controlled Auto Ignition (CAI), also known as Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI), is one of the most promising combustion technologies to reduce the fuel consumption and NOx emissions. Currently, CAI combustion is constrained at part load operation conditions because of misfire at low load and knocking combustion at high load, and the lack of effective means to control the combustion process. Extending its operating range including high load boundary towards full load and low load boundary towards idle in order to allow the CAI engine to meet the demand of whole vehicle driving cycles, has become one of the key issues facing the industrialisation of CAI/HCCI technology. Furthermore, this combustion mode should be compatible with different fuels, and can switch back to conventional spark ignition operation when necessary. In this paper, the CAI operation is demonstrated on a 2-stroke gasoline direct injection (GDI) engine equipped with a poppet valve train.
Technical Paper

A Study of Turbulent Flame Development with Ethanol Fuels in an Optical Spark Ignition Engine

The work was concerned with experimental study of the turbulent flame development process of ethanol fuels in an optically accessed spark ignition research engine. The fuels were evaluated in a single cylinder engine equipped with full-bore overhead optical access and operated at typical stoichiometric part-load conditions. High-speed natural light (or chemiluminescence) imaging and simultaneous in-cylinder pressure data measurement and analysis were used to understand the fundamental influence of both low and high ethanol content on turbulent flame propagation and subsequent mass burning. Causes for the difference in cyclic variations were evaluated in detail, with comparisons made to existing burning velocity correlations where available.
Technical Paper

CAI Combustion with Methanol and Ethanol in an Air-Assisted Direct Injection SI Engine

CAI combustion has the potential to be the most clean combustion technology in internal combustion engines and is being intensively researched. Following the previous research on CAI combustion of gasoline fuel, systematic investigation is being carried out on the application of bio-fuels in CAI combustion. As part of an on-going research project, CAI combustion of methanol and ethanol was studied on a single-cylinder direct gasoline engine with an air-assisted injector. The CAI combustion was achieved by trapping part of burnt gas within the cylinder through using short-duration camshafts and early closure of the exhaust valves. During the experiment the engine speed was varied from 1200rpm to 2100rpm and the air/fuel ratio was altered from the stoichiometry to the misfire limit. Their combustion characteristics were obtained by analysing cylinder pressure trace.
Technical Paper

Characterization and Potential of Premixed Dual-Fuel Combustion in a Heavy Duty Natural Gas/Diesel Engine

Natural Gas (NG) is currently a cost effective substitute for diesel fuel in the Heavy-Duty (HD) diesel transportation sector. Dual-Fuel engines substitute NG in place of diesel for decreased NOx and soot emissions, but suffer from high engine-out methane (CH4) emissions. Premixed Dual-Fuel Combustion (PDFC) is one method of decreasing methane emissions and simultaneously improving engine efficiency while maintaining low NOx and soot levels. PDFC utilizes an early diesel injection to adjust the flammability of the premixed charge, promoting more uniform burning of methane. Engine experiments were carried out using a NG and diesel HD single cylinder research engine. Key speeds and loads were explored in order to determine where PDFC is effective at reducing engine-out methane emissions over Conventional Dual-Fuel which uses a single diesel injection for ignition.
Technical Paper

Characterization of Low Load Ethanol Dual-Fuel Combustion using Single and Split Diesel Injections on a Heavy-Duty Engine

The use of two different fuels to control the in-cylinder charge reactivity of compression ignition engines has been shown as an effective way to achieve low levels of nitrogen oxides (NOx) and soot emissions. The port fuel injection of ethanol on a common rail, direct injected diesel engine increases this reactivity gradient. The objective of this study is to experimentally characterize the controllability, performance, and emissions of ethanol-diesel dual-fuel combustion in a single cylinder heavy-duty engine. Three different diesel injection strategies were investigated: a late split, an early split, and an early single injection. The experiments were performed at low load, where the fuel conversion efficiency is typically reduced due to incomplete combustion. Ethanol substitution ratios varied from 44-80% on an energy input basis.
Technical Paper

Combustion Characteristics of CAI Combustion with Alcohol Fuels

Due to its potential for simultaneous improvement in fuel consumption and exhaust emissions, controlled autoignition (CAI) combustion has been subject to continuous research in the last several years. At the same time, there has been a lot of interest in the use of alternative fuels in order to reduce reliance on conventional fossil fuels. Therefore, this experimental study has been carried out to investigate the effect of alcohol fuels on the CAI combustion process and on the resulting engine performance. The experimental work was conducted on an optical single cylinder engine with an air-assisted injector. To achieve controlled autoignition, residual gas was trapped in the cylinder by using negative valve overlap and an intake air heater was used to ensure stable CAI combustion in the optical engine. Methanol, ethanol and blended fuels were tested and compared with the results of gasoline.
Technical Paper

Combustion and Emission Characteristics of a HCCI Engine Fuelled with Different n-Butanol-Gasoline Blends

Biobutanol, i.e. n-butanol, as a second generation bio-derived alternative fuel of internal combustion engines, can facilitate the energy diversification in transportation and reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from engines and vehicles. However, the majority of research was conducted on spark-ignition engines fuelled with n-butanol and its blend with gasoline. A few investigations were focused on the combustion and exhaust emission characteristics of homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI) engines fuelled with n-butanol-gasoline blends. In this study, experiments were conducted in a single cylinder four stroke port fuel injection HCCI engine with fully variable valve lift and timing mechanisms on both the intake and exhaust valves. HCCI combustion was achieved by employing the negative valve overlap (NVO) strategy while being fueled with gasoline (Bu0), n-butanol (Bu100) and their blends containing 30% n-butanol by volume (Bu30).
Technical Paper

Comparison of HCCI Combustion Respectively Fueled with Gasoline, Ethanol and Methanol through the Trapped Residual Gas Strategy

In this paper, HCCI combustion characteristics of three typical high octane number fuels, gasoline, ethanol and methanol, are compared in a Ricardo single cylinder port injection engine with compression ratio of 10.5. In order to trap enough high temperature residual gas to heat intake mixture charge for stable HCCI combustion, camshafts of the experimental engine are replaced by a set of special camshafts with low valve lift and short cam duration. The three fuels are injected into the intake port respectively in different mixture volume percentages, which are E0 (100% gasoline), E50 (50% gasoline, 50% ethanol), E100 (100% ethanol), M50 (50% gasoline, 50% methanol) and M100 (100% methanol). This work concentrates on the combustion and emission characteristics and the available HCCI operation range of these fuels. What's more, the detailed comparison of in-cylinder temperature, ignition timing and other parameters has been carried out.
Technical Paper

Comparison of Performance, Efficiency and Emissions between Gasoline and E85 in a Two-Stroke Poppet Valve Engine with Lean Boost CAI Operation

Controlled Auto Ignition (CAI), also known as Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI), is one of the most promising combustion technologies to reduce the fuel consumption and NOx emissions. Most research on CAI/HCCI combustion operations have been carried out in 4-stroke gasoline engines, despite it was originally employed to improve the part-load combustion and emission in the two-stroke gasoline engine. However, conventional ported two-stroke engines suffer from durability and high emissions. In order to take advantage of the high power density of the two-stroke cycle operation and avoid the difficulties of the ported engine, systematic research and development works have been carried out on the two-stroke cycle operation in a 4-valves gasoline engine. CAI combustion was achieved over a large range of operating conditions when the relative air/fuel ratio (lambda) was kept at one as measured by an exhaust lambda sensor.
Technical Paper

Diesel Soot Oxidation under Controlled Conditions

A quantitative relationship between diesel soot oxidation rate and oxidation temperature and oxygen partial pressure was investigated by burning the diesel exhaust soot particles in a controlled flat flame supplied with methane/air/oxygen/nitrogen mixtures. The oxidation temperature and the oxygen partial pressure were controlled in the ranges of 1530 to 1820 K and 0.01 to 0.05 atm (1atm = 1.01325 bar) respectively. Soot particle size distribution measurements were achieved with transmission electron microscopy (TEM) for particle samples that were collected on copper grids at different positions along the flame centerline. Oxidation periods were determined by means of laser Doppler anemometry (LDA). The experimental results showed that the experimental oxidation rates fall between the values predicted by the Nagle and Strickland-Constable formula and those by the Lee formula.
Technical Paper

Dilution Boundary Expansion Mechanism of SI-CAI Hybrid Combustion Based on Micro Flame Ignition Strategy

In decade years, Spark Ignition-Controlled Auto Ignition (SI-CAI) hybrid combustion, also called Spark Assisted Compression Ignition (SACI) has shown its high-efficiency and low emissions advantages. However, high dilution causes the problem of unstable initial ignition and flame propagation, which leads to high cyclic variation of heat release and IMEP. The instability of SI-CAI hybrid combustion limits its dilution degree and its ability to improve the thermal efficiency. In order to solve instability problems and expand the dilution boundary of hybrid combustion, micro flame ignition (MFI) strategy is applied in gasoline hybrid combustion engines. Small amount of Dimethyl Ether (DME) chosen as the ignition fuel is injected into cylinder to form micro flame kernel, which can stabilize the ignition combustion process.
Technical Paper

Dilution Effects on the Controlled Auto-Ignition (CAI) Combustion of Hydrocarbon and Alcohol Fuels

This paper presents results from an experimental programme researching the in-cylinder conditions necessary to obtain homogenous CAI (or HCCI) combustion in a 4-stroke engine. The fuels under investigation include three blends of Unleaded Gasoline, a 95 RON Primary Reference Fuel, Methanol, and Ethanol. This work concentrates on establishing the CAI operating range with regard to Air/Fuel ratio and Exhaust Gas Re-circulation and their effect on the ignition timing, combustion rate and variability, Indicated thermal efficiency, and engine-out emissions such as NOx. Detailed maps are presented, defining how each of the measured variables changes over the entire CAI region. Results indicate that the alcohols have significantly higher tolerance to dilution than the hydrocarbon fuels tested. Also, variations in Gasoline blend have little effect on any of the combustion parameters measured.
Technical Paper

Effects of Ethanol on Part-Load Performance and Emissions Analysis of SI Combustion with EIVC and Throttled Operation and CAI Combustion

Internal combustion engines are subjected to part-load operation more than in full load during a typical vehicle driving cycle. The problem with the Spark Ignition (SI) engine is its inherent low part-load efficiency. This problem arises due to the pumping loses that occur when the throttle closes or partially opens. One way of decreasing the pumping losses is to operate the engine lean or by adding residual gases. It is not possible to operate the engine unthrottled at very low loads due to misfire. However, the load can also be controlled by changing the intake valve closing timing - either early or late intake valve closing. Both strategies reduce the pumping loses and hence increase the efficiency. However the early intake valve closure (EIVC) can be used as mode transition from SI to CAI combustion.
Technical Paper

Effects of Ethanol on Performance and Exhaust Emissions from a DI Spark Ignition Engine with Throttled and Unthrottled Operations

In recent years, in order to develop more efficient and cleaner gasoline engines, a number of new engine operating strategies have been proposed and many have been studied on different engines but there is a lack of comparison between various operating strategies and alternative fuels at different SI modes. In this research, a single cylinder direct injection gasoline engine equipped with an electro-hydraulic valve train system has been commissioned and used to study and compare different engine operation modes. In this work, the fuel consumption, gaseous and particulate emissions of gasoline and its mixture with ethanol (E15 and E85) were measured and analysed when the engine was operated at the same load but with different load control methods by an intake throttle, reduced intake valve duration, and positive overlap.
Technical Paper

Experimental Investigation of Combustion and Emission Characteristics of the Direct Injection Dimethyl Ether Enabled Micro-Flame Ignited (MFI) Hybrid Combustion in a 4-Stroke Gasoline Engine

Controlled Auto-Ignition (CAI), also known as Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI), has the potential to improve gasoline engines’ efficiency and simultaneously achieve ultra-low NOx emissions. Two of the primary obstacles for applying CAI combustion are the control of combustion phasing and the maximum heat release rate. To solve these problems, dimethyl ether (DME) was directly injected into the cylinder to generate multi-point micro-flame through compression in order to manage the entire heat release of gasoline in the cylinder through port fuel injection, which is known as micro-flame ignited (MFI) hybrid combustion.
Technical Paper

Experimental Investigation of the Effects of Combined Hydrogen and Diesel Combustion on the Emissions of a HSDI Diesel Engine

The effects of load, speed, exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) level and hydrogen addition level on the emissions from a diesel engine have been investigated. The experiments were performed on a 2.0 litre, 4 cylinder, direct injection engine with a high pressure common-rail injection system. Injection timing was varied between 14° BTDC and TDC and injection pressures were varied from 800 bar to 1400 bar to find a suitable base point. EGR levels were then varied from 0% to 40%. Hydrogen induction was varied between 0 and 6% vol. of the inlet charge. In the case of using hydrogen and EGR, the hydrogen replaced air. The load was varied from 0 to 5.4 bar BMEP at two engine speeds, 1500 rpm and 2500 rpm. For this investigation the carbon monoxide (CO), total unburnt hydrocarbons (THC), nitrogen oxides (NOx) and the filter smoke number (FSN) were all measured.
Technical Paper

Experimental Investigation on DME Assisted Gasoline CAI/HCCI Combustion with Intake Re-Breathing Valve Strategy

In order to investigate feasibility of DME (Di-methyl ether) assisted gasoline CAI (controlled-auto ignition) combustion, direct DME injection is employed to act as the ignition source to trigger the auto-ignition combustion of premixed gasoline/air mixture with high temperature exhaust gas. Intake re-breathing valve strategy is adopted to obtain internal exhaust recirculation (EGR) that regulates heat release rate and ignitability of the premixed gasoline and air mixture. The effects of intake re-breathing valve timing and 2nd DME injection timing of different split injection ratios were investigated and discussed in terms of combustion characteristics, emission and efficiencies. The analyses showed that re-breathing intake valve timing had a large effect on the operation range of CAI combustion due to EGR and intake temperature variation.
Technical Paper

In-cylinder Studies of Fuel Injection and Combustion from a Narrow Cone Fuel Injector in a High Speed Single Cylinder Optical Engine

Over the last decade, the high speed direct injection (HSDI) diesel engine has made dramatic progress in both its performance and market share in the light duty vehicle market. However, with ever more stringent emission legislation to be introduced over coming years, the simultaneous reduction of NOx and Particulate Matter (PM) from the HSDI diesel engine is being intensively researched. As part of a European Union (EU) NICE integrated project, research has been carried out to investigate the fuel injection and combustion from a narrow cone fuel injector in a high speed direct injection single cylinder engine with optical access utilising a multiple injection strategy and various alternate fuels. The fuel injection process was visualised using a high speed imaging system comprising a copper vapour laser and a high speed video camera. The auto-ignition and combustion process was analysed through the chemiluminescence images of CHO and OH using an intensified CCD camera.
Technical Paper

Integrated CFD-Experimental Methodology for the Study of a Dual Fuel Heavy Duty Diesel Engine

This paper deals with the experimental and numerical investigation of a 2.0 litre single cylinder Heavy Duty Diesel Engine fuelled by natural gas and diesel oil in Dual Fuel mode. Due to the gaseous nature of the main fuel and to the high compression ratio of the diesel engine, reduced emissions can be obtained. An experimental study has been carried out at three different load level (25%, 50% and 75% of full engine load). Basing on experimental data, the authors recreated a 45° mesh sector of the engine cylinder and performed CFD simulations for the cases at 50% and 75% load levels. Numerical simulations were carried out on the 3D code Ansys FORTE. The aim of this work is to study combustion phenomena and, in particular, the interaction between natural gas and diesel oil, respectively represented by methane and n-dodecane. A reduced kinetic scheme for methane auto-ignition was implemented while for n-dodecane two set of reactions were utilised.
Technical Paper

Investigation of advanced valve timing strategies for efficient spark ignition ethanol operation

Biofuels for internal combustion engines have been explored worldwide to reduce fossil fuel usage and mitigate greenhouse gas emissions. Additionally, increased spark ignition (SI) engine part load efficiency has been demanded by recent emission legislation for the same purposes. Considering theses aspects, this study investigates the use of non-conventional valve timing strategies in a 0.35 L four valve single cylinder test engine operating with anhydrous ethanol. The engine was equipped with a fully variable valve train system enabling independent valve timing and lift control. Conventional spark ignition operation with throttle load control (tSI) was tested as baseline. A second valve strategy using dethrottling via early intake valve closure (EIVC) was tested to access the possible pumping loss reduction. Two other strategies, negative valve overlap (NVO) and exhaust rebreathing (ER), were investigated as hot residual gas trapping strategies using EIVC as dethrottling technique.