Author Archives: Dario Barone

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Compression Ignition Engines

Engine Technology: toward “Near Zero Emissions” c.i. engines

Based on its better thermodynamic efficiency with respect to the spark-ignition (SI) engine, the compression ignition engine will be the most attractive powered solution for different classes of vehicles.

The key-word for the development of  the future CI engines is “flexibility”, in terms of performance, operating mode, hardware complexity and adopted fuel.

In Istituto Motori studies and experiments are performed on various aspects of the CI engine technology and in a wide range of engine applications as:

  • Low temperature combustion concepts to accomplish the in-cylinder NOx and particulate formation control;
  • Development of base combustion system technology like high-pressure injection systems, piston bowl design and compression ratio, intake port design in order to increase performances and reduce emission and NVH;
  • Advanced air, boosting and EGR management systems, like twin-stage turbo and low-pressure EGR, to obtain better performances and fuel economy;
  • Advanced after-treatment systems, like catalysts and filters for unburned gaseous, nitrous oxide and particulate matter emission control, to comply with the severe pollutant limitations without penalties in engine performance

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Spark Ignition Engines

The antithetical goals of reducing fuel consumption and emission levels, improving torque and power is currently achieved through the so-called downsizing, consisting in engine displacement reduction connected to a higher compression ratio. This approach allows to reach a better global efficiency, thanks to supercharging with variable geometry turbine (VGT).  Knock  is controlled by means of Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI), cooled EGR and Variable Valve Actuation (VVA) systems, together with the use of advanced sensors for the diagnostic of the combustion process.

In Istituto Motori, due to a long experience both in modelling and in engine management, including electronic control and fluid-dynamic field, research activities on the following topics are in progress:

  • study of the formation process of the air/gasoline mixture (in relation to the choice of the position and of the type of injectors, to the air motion depending on the geometries of intake ducts and combustion chamber) through the use of three-dimensional proprietary and open source CFD codes;
  • study of the control strategies of injection (single or multiple), ignition and EGR;
  • study and realisation of prototypes for the measurement of the ionization current between the spark plug electrodes, for the purposes of combustion and knock diagnostics and ignition control;
  • study and realisation of electro-hydraulic and electro-magnetic VVA prototypes;
  • study of heavy duty engines fuelled with NG/H2 blends on European Transient Cycle (ETC);
  • dual fuel technology with homogeneous air/fuel charge ignited by a diesel pilot injection.

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