Flow measurements using combustion image velocimetry in diesel engines

University dissertation from Stockholm : Department of Machine design, Royal Institute of Technology

Abstract: This work shows the in-cylinder airflow, and its effects on combustion and emissions, in a modern, heavy-duty diesel engine. The in-cylinder airflow is examined experimentally in an optical engine and the flow field inside the cylinder is quantified and shown during combustion, crank angle resolved. Cross-correlation on combustion pictures, with its natural light from black body radiation, has been done to calculate the vector field during the injection and after-oxidation period. In this work, this technique is called combustion image velocimetry (CIV). The quantified in-cylinder flow is compared with simulated data, calculated using the GT-POWER 1-D simulation tool, and combined with single-cylinder emission measurements at various in-cylinder airflows. The airflow in the single cylinder, characterised by swirl, tumble and turbulent intensity, was varied by using an active valve train (AVT), which allowed change in airflow during the engine’s operation. The same operation points were examined in the single-cylinder engine, optical engine and simulated in GT-POWER.This work has shown that the in-cylinder airflow has a great impact on emissions and combustion in diesel engines, even at injection pressures up to 2,500 bar, with or without EGR and load up to 20-bar IMEP. Swirl is the strongest player to reduce soot emissions. Tumble has been shown to affect soot emissions negatively in combination with swirl. Tumble seems to offset the swirl centre and the offset is observed also after combustion in the optical engine tests. Injection pressure affects the swirl at late crank angle degrees during the after-oxidation part of the combustion. Higher injection pressure gives a higher measured swirl. This increase is thought to be created by the fuel spray flow interaction. The angular velocity in the centre of the piston bowl is significantly higher compared with the velocity in the outer region of the bowl. Higher injection pressure gives larger difference of the angular velocity.Calculated swirl number from the CIV technique has also been compared with other calculation methods, GT-POWER and CFD-based method. The result from the CIV technique are in line with the other methods. CFD-based calculations, according to [62], has the best fit to the CIV method. The GT-POWER calculations shows the same trend at low swirl number, but at high swirl number the two methods differs significantly.