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Research project: Split-injection diesel engine modelling

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Prospective technology for low-emission power and propulsion systems relies on highly-dilute, low-temperature combustion. This study probes the fundamental fluid dynamic processes which are critical to ensuring stable, efficient, and clean conversion of fuel energy under such highly dilute conditions. The primary application of this research is to 'split-injection' strategies which are being investigated by partners in the automotive industry. These employ large numbers of separate fuel-injection events in order to precisely control the timing and rate of heat release and pollutant formation.

High-end scientific computing methods are being applied to perform full-resolution numerical experiments, designed to explain the relationship between the fluid-, mixing-, and chemical-dynamics of split-injection. A novel modelling framework, built on the concept of fluid age is being developed; the age, or residence time, of a mixture is a natural reference quantity for understanding how kinetically limited combustion processes (e.g. autoignition, highly-dilute combustion, NOx and soot-particle formation) evolve. Subsequently the potential of this method for design of ultra-low-emission combustion systems will be demonstrated in automotive applications.

Figure one: Temperature field during turbulent autoignition of non-premixed n-heptane/air, single-injection case, simulated by Nabil Meah.

Related research groups

Aerodynamics and Flight Mechanic (AFM)
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