A Gasoline Fuelled Pre-Chamber Ignition System for Homogeneous Lean Combustion Processes
ISSN: 0148-7191, e-ISSN: 2688-3627
Published October 24, 2016 by SAE International in United States
Annotation ability available
Pre-chamber ignition systems enable the combustion of homogeneous lean mixtures in internal combustion engines with significantly increased thermal efficiency. Such ignition systems provide a much higher ignition energy compared to a common spark ignition by burning a small portion of the charge in a separate chamber, generating multiple ignition sites in the main combustion chamber and increasing the turbulent flame speed. Pre-chamber ignition systems are commonly used in large natural gas engines but the integration in automotive engines is not feasible so far due to the lack of suitable fuelling systems needed to keep the pre-chamber mixture stoichiometric at lean operation of the engine. Based on preliminary investigations we developed an ignition system with fuelled pre-chamber for automotive engines utilizing the available space for the conventional spark plug. These investigations proved the thermal stability and function of the system up to a specific power of 100 kW/l and a speed of 12500 rpm. The fuelling system saturates air with fuel vapour and injects this mixture time-controlled into the pre-chamber. The already available fuel tank ventilation system in Otto-engine powered cars can provide such an air-gasoline-vapour mixture. Further, the system uses an inexpensive low pressure solenoid valve to control the pre-chamber enrichment. The prototype of the pre-chamber incorporates a spark plug, fuelling valve, thermocouple and pressure transducer and was measured in a full engine at characteristic operating points regarding thermal efficiency, combustion process and emissions. The ignition system showed the ability to ignite highly diluted mixtures with λ = 1.6 and an efficiency gain of 14.8% compared to stoichiometric spark plug operation at 4.5 bar IMEP and 1500 rpm with a NOx emission below 100 ppm.
CitationSchumacher, M. and Wensing, M., "A Gasoline Fuelled Pre-Chamber Ignition System for Homogeneous Lean Combustion Processes," SAE Technical Paper 2016-01-2176, 2016, https://doi.org/10.4271/2016-01-2176.
- Roessler W. U. and Muraszew A., “Evaluation of Prechamber Spark Ignition Engine Concepts: EPA-650/2-75-023,” ser. Environmental Protection Technology Series, 1975.
- Dale, J. and Oppenheim, A., "Enhanced Ignition for I. C. Engines with Premixed Gases," SAE Technical Paper 810146, 1981, doi:10.4271/810146.
- Toulson, E., Schock, H., and Attard, W., "A Review of Pre-Chamber Initiated Jet Ignition Combustion Systems," SAE Technical Paper 2010-01-2263, 2010, doi:10.4271/2010-01-2263.
- Gussak, L., Turkish, M., and Siegla, D., "High Chemical Activity of Incomplete Combustion Products and a Method of Prechamber Torch Ignition for Avalanche Activation of Combustion in Internal Combustion Engines," SAE Technical Paper 750890, 1975, doi:10.4271/750890.
- Gussak, L., Karpov, V., and Tikhonov, Y., "The Application of Lag-Process in Prechamber Engines," SAE Technical Paper 790692, 1979, doi:10.4271/790692.
- Yamaguchi S., Ohiwa N., and Hasegawa T., “Ignition and burning process in a divided chamber bomb,” Combustion and Flame, vol. 59, no. 2, pp. 177-187, 1985. doi: 10.1016/0010-2180(85)90023-9
- Watson H. C. and Lawrence J., “A High Efficiency Low Emission Biofuel Heat Engine,” in Solar ’97, Australian and New Zealand Solar Energy Society, Ed. Canberra, A.C.T. : Australian Capital Territory Branch of the Australian and New Zealand Solar Energy Society, 1997.
- Toulson, E., Watson, H., and Attard, W., "The Effects of Hot and Cool EGR with Hydrogen Assisted Jet Ignition," SAE Technical Paper 2007-01-3627, 2007, doi:10.4271/2007-01-3627.
- Boretti A. A. and Watson H. C., “The lean burn direct injection jet ignition gas engine,” International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, vol. 34, no. 18, pp. 7835-7841, 2009. doi: 10.1016/j.ijhydene.2009.07.022
- Toulson, E., Watson, H., and Attard, W., "Gas Assisted Jet Ignition of Ultra-Lean LPG in a Spark Ignition Engine," SAE Technical Paper 2009-01-0506, 2009, doi:10.4271/2009-01-0506.
- Couet, S., Higelin, P., and Moreau, B., "APIR: A New Firing Concept for the Internal Combustion Engines - sensitivity to knock and in-cylinder aerodynamics," SAE Technical Paper 2001-01-1954, 2001, doi:10.4271/2001-01-1954.
- Geiger, J., Pischinger, S., Böwing, R., Koß, H. et al., "Ignition Systems for Highly Diluted Mixtures in SI-Engines," SAE Technical Paper 1999-01-0799, 1999, doi:10.4271/1999-01-0799.
- Getzlaff, J., Pape, J., Gruenig, C., Kuhnert, D. et al., "Investigations on Pre-Chamber Spark Plug with Pilot Injection," SAE Technical Paper 2007-01-0479, 2007, doi:10.4271/2007-01-0479.
- Shah, A., Tunestal, P., and Johansson, B., "Effect of Pre-Chamber Volume and Nozzle Diameter on Pre-Chamber Ignition in Heavy Duty Natural Gas Engines," SAE Technical Paper 2015-01-0867, 2015, doi:10.4271/2015-01-0867.
- Shah Ashish, “Improving the Efficiency of Gas Engines using Pre-chamber Ignition,” Ph.D. dissertation, 2015, Lund University, ISBN: 9789176235621.
- Kettner, M., Rothe, M., Velji, A., Spicher, U. et al., "A New Flame Jet Concept to Improve the Inflammation of Lean Burn Mixtures in SI Engines," SAE Technical Paper 2005-01-3688, 2005, doi:10.4271/2005-01-3688.
- Kettner M., Eichmeier J., Hensel S., and Velji A., “BPI-Verfahren für Benzin-Direkteinspritzung II: Abschlussbericht,” Tech. Rep., 2007, Institut für Kolbenmaschinen der Universit¨at Karlsruhe.
- Attard, W. and Parsons, P., "A Normally Aspirated Spark Initiated Combustion System Capable of High Load, High Efficiency and Near Zero NOx Emissions in a Modern Vehicle Powertrain," SAE Int. J. Engines 3(2):269-287, 2010, doi:10.4271/2010-01-2196.
- Attard, W. and Blaxill, H., "A Gasoline Fueled Pre-Chamber Jet Ignition Combustion System at Unthrottled Conditions," SAE Int. J. Engines 5(2):315-329, 2012, doi:10.4271/2012-01-0386.
- Attard, W. and Blaxill, H., "A Single Fuel Pre-Chamber Jet Ignition Powertrain Achieving High Load, High Efficiency and Near Zero NOx Emissions," SAE Int. J. Engines 5(3):734-746, 2012, doi:10.4271/2011-01-2023.
- Bunce, M. and Blaxill, H., "Methodology for Combustion Analysis of a Spark Ignition Engine Incorporating a Pre-Chamber Combustor," SAE Technical Paper 2014-01-2603, 2014, doi:10.4271/2014-01-2603.
- Bunce, M. and Blaxill, H., "Sub-200 g/kWh BSFC on a Light Duty Gasoline Engine," SAE Technical Paper 2016-01-0709, 2016, doi:10.4271/2016-01-0709.
- Chinnathambi, P., Bunce, M., and Cruff, L., "RANS Based Multidimensional Modeling of an Ultra-Lean Burn Pre-Chamber Combustion System with Auxiliary Liquid Gasoline Injection," SAE Technical Paper 2015-01-0386, 2015, doi:10.4271/2015-01-0386.
- Schumacher M., “Formula Student Rennwagen des Studierenden-Teams der FAU Erlangen-Nürnberg,” in Motorische Verbrennung, ser. Berichte zur Energie- und Verfahrenstechnik BEV, Leipertz A., Ed. ESYTEC, 2015, vol. 15.1, pp. 5-12.
- Gesundheitsschutz Suva, “Sicherheitstechnische Kenngrössen von Flüssigkeiten und Gasen,” Tech. Rep., 2010, Suva, Luzern.
- Reddy, S., "Understanding and Designing Automotive Evaporative Emission Control Systems," SAE Technical Paper 2012-01-1700, 2012, doi:10.4271/2012-01-1700.
- Attard, W., Blaxill, H., Anderson, E., and Litke, P., "Knock Limit Extension with a Gasoline Fueled Pre-Chamber Jet Igniter in a Modern Vehicle Powertrain," SAE Int. J. Engines 5(3):1201-1215, 2012, doi:10.4271/2012-01-1143.