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Title: Numerical investigation on the in-cylinder flow with SI and CAI valve timings
Author: Beauquel, Julien A.
ISNI:       0000 0004 5921 0977
Awarding Body: Loughborough University
Current Institution: Loughborough University
Date of Award: 2016
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The principle of controlled auto-ignition (CAI) is to mix fuel and air homogeneously before compressing the mixture to the point of auto-ignition. As ignition occurs simultaneously, CAI engines operate with lean mixtures preventing high cylinder pressures. CAI engines produce small amounts of nitrogen oxides (NOx) due to low combustion temperatures while maintaining high compression ratios and engine efficiencies. Due to simultaneous combustion and lean mixtures, CAI engines are restricted between low and mid load operations. Various strategies have been studied to improve the load limit of CAI engines. The scope of the project is to investigate the consequences of varying valve timing, as a method to control the mixture temperature within the combustion chamber and therefore, controlling the mixture auto-ignition point. This study presents computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modelling results of transient flow, inside a 0.45 litre Lotus single cylinder engine. After a validation process, a chemical kinetics model is combined with the CFD code, in order to study in-cylinder temperatures, the mixture distribution during compression and to predict the auto-ignition timing. The first part of the study focuses on validating the calculated in-cylinder velocities. A mesh sensitivity study is performed as well as a comparison of different turbulence models. A method to reduce computational time of the calculations is presented. The effects of engine speed on charge delay and charge amount inside the cylinder, the development of the in-cylinder flow field and the variation of turbulence parameters during the intake and compression stroke, are studied. The second part of the study focuses on the gasoline mixture and the variation of the valve timing, to retain different ratios of residual gases within the cylinder. After validation of the model, a final set of CFD calculations is performed, to investigate the effects of valve timing on flow and the engine parameters. The results are then compared to a fully homogeneous mixture model to study the benefits of varying valve duration. New key findings and contributions to CAI knowledge were found in this investigation. Reducing the intake and exhaust valve durations created a mixture temperature stratification and a fuel concentration distribution, prior to auto-ignition. It resulted in extending the heat release rate duration, improving combustion. However, shorter valve timing durations also showed an increase in heat transfer, pumping work and friction power, with a decrease of cylinder indicated efficiency. Valve timing, as a method to control auto-ignition, should only be used when the load limit of CAI engines, is to be improved.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Computational fluid dynamics ; CFD ; Controlled auto ignition ; CAI ; Engine ; Combustion ; Chemical kinetics ; Laser doppler anemometry ; LDA ; Homogeneous charge compression ignition ; HCCI