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Performance optimization of a spark-ignition turbocharged VVA engine under knock limited operation

De Bellis, Vincenzo
Applied energy 2016 v.164 pp. 162-174
combustion, compressors, energy use and consumption, models, spark ignition engines, temperature
Various solutions are being proposed to improve the performance of spark-ignition internal combustion engines. A very effective approach is the downsizing technique, which allows the reducing of the Brake Specific Fuel Consumption (BSFC) at part load, while maintaining the required performance at high load. On the other hand, the above technique may cause substantial BSFC detrainments at high load because of the onset of knocking combustions.In the present work, a turbocharged spark ignition engine equipped with a fully flexible valve system is numerically investigated by a 1D model (GT-Power™). Proper “user routines” are used to simulate the turbulent combustion process and the knock phenomenon. In a first stage, the engine model is validated against experimental data under both high and part load operations, in terms of overall performance and combustion evolution. The validated model is then integrated in a multipurpose commercial optimizer (modeFRONTIER™) with the aim to identify the engine calibrations that maximize the load and minimize the BSFC under high load knock-limited operations at a speed of 3000rpm. The effects of different intake valve strategies are compared. The optimized operating parameters are the waste-gate valve opening and the air-to-fuel ratio, while the combustion phasing is automatically adjusted to avoid the knock onset. Proper constraints are assigned for the boost pressure, turbocharger speed, and turbine inlet temperature. The adopted optimization process shows the capability to reproduce the experimentally-identified calibration with satisfactory accuracy. In addition, the results underline the BSFC advantages related to an early intake valve closure strategy with respect to a Full Lift one, due to a better combustion phasing and a reduced mixture over-fuelling.The developed automatic procedure allows for a “virtual” engine calibration on a completely theoretical basis and proves to be very helpful in reducing the engine development costs and time-to-market.