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Research Papers: Internal Combustion Engines

Extending Lean and Exhaust Gas Recirculation-Dilute Operating Limits of a Modern Gasoline Direct-Injection Engine Using a Low-Energy Transient Plasma Ignition System

[+] Author and Article Information
James Sevik

Argonne National Laboratory,
Lemont, IL 60439
e-mail: jsevik@anl.gov

Thomas Wallner

Argonne National Laboratory,
Lemont, IL 60439
e-mail: twallner@anl.gov

Michael Pamminger

Argonne National Laboratory,
Lemont, IL 60439
e-mail: mpamminger@anl.gov

Riccardo Scarcelli

Argonne National Laboratory,
Lemont, IL 60439
e-mail: rscarcelli@anl.gov

Dan Singleton

Transient Plasma Systems, Inc.,
Torrance, CA 90501
e-mail: dan@transientplasmasystems.com

Jason Sanders

Transient Plasma Systems, Inc.,
Torrance, CA 90501
e-mail: jason@transientplasmasystems.com

Contributed by the IC Engine Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENGINEERING FOR GAS TURBINES AND POWER. Manuscript received February 4, 2016; final manuscript received April 4, 2016; published online May 24, 2016. Editor: David Wisler.The United States Government retains, and by accepting the article for publication, the publisher acknowledges that the United States Government retains, a non-exclusive, paid-up, irrevocable, worldwide license to publish or reproduce the published form of this work, or allow others to do so, for United States government purposes.

J. Eng. Gas Turbines Power 138(11), 112807 (May 24, 2016) (8 pages) Paper No: GTP-16-1055; doi: 10.1115/1.4033470 History: Received February 04, 2016; Revised April 04, 2016

The efficiency improvement and emissions reduction potential of lean and exhaust gas recirculation (EGR)-dilute operation of spark-ignition gasoline engines is well understood and documented. However, dilute operation is generally limited by deteriorating combustion stability with increasing inert gas levels. The combustion stability decreases due to reduced mixture flame speeds resulting in significantly increased combustion initiation periods and burn durations. A study was designed and executed to evaluate the potential to extend lean and EGR-dilute limits using a low-energy transient plasma ignition system. The low-energy transient plasma was generated by nanosecond pulses and its performance compared to a conventional transistorized coil ignition (TCI) system operated on an automotive, gasoline direct-injection (GDI) single-cylinder research engine. The experimental assessment was focused on steady-state experiments at the part load condition of 1500 rpm 5.6 bar indicated mean effective pressure (IMEP), where dilution tolerance is particularly critical to improving efficiency and emission performance. Experimental results suggest that the energy delivery process of the low-energy transient plasma ignition system significantly improves part load dilution tolerance by reducing the early flame development period. Statistical analysis of relevant combustion metrics was performed in order to further investigate the effects of the advanced ignition system on combustion stability. Results confirm that at select operating conditions EGR tolerance and lean limit could be improved by as much as 20% (from 22.7 to 27.1% EGR) and nearly 10% (from λ = 1.55 to 1.7) with the low-energy transient plasma ignition system.

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Figures

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Fig. 1

Conventional (left) and low-energy transient plasma (right) spark plug

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Fig. 2

Current discharge for conventional and low-energy transient plasma ignition systems

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Fig. 4

Effects of pulse separation at 1500 rpm 5.6 bar IMEP

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Fig. 5

Impact of input voltage on engine stability

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Fig. 6

Sweep of EGR dilution at 1500 rpm 5.6 bar IMEP

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Fig. 7

Flame development angle and combustion duration for EGR sweep at 1500 rpm 5.6 bar IMEP

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Fig. 8

Spark timings and combustion characteristics for EGR operation at 1500 rpm 5.6 bar

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Fig. 9

Indicated thermal and combustion efficiency for EGR sweep at 1500 rpm 5.6 bar IMEP

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Fig. 10

Analysis of losses for EGR operation at 1500 rpm 5.6 bar IMEP

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Fig. 11

NOx emissions for EGR sweep at 1500 rpm 5.6 bar IMEP

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Fig. 12

Sweep of lean operation at 1500 rpm 5.6 bar IMEP

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Fig. 13

Flame development angle and combustion duration for lean sweep at 1500 rpm 5.6 bar IMEP

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Fig. 14

Spark timings and combustion characteristics for lean operation at 1500 rpm 5.6 bar

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Fig. 15

Indicated thermal and combustion efficiency for 1500 rpm 5.6 bar IMEP lean sweep

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Fig. 16

Analysis of losses for lean operation at 1500 rpm 5.6 bar IMEP

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Fig. 17

NOx emissions for lean sweep at 1500 rpm 5.6 bar IMEP

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