Application of a New Combustion Analysis Method in the Study of Alternate Fuel Combustion and Emission Characteristics

  • J. A. Harrington


A new combustion analysis method is described, and results obtained in an application are presented. The application selected is a study of the effects of EGR (Exhaust Gas Recirculation) on the combustion of methanol in a spark-ignited engine. The combustion analysis method is based upon a measure of the variation of the logarithm of the product (pressure) x (volume)γ̅ with time. The quantity γ̅ (an effective specific heat ratio for gases in the engine combustion chamber) is determined readily from the slope of log P versus log V curves. Measurements of log (\(P{V^{\bar \gamma }}\)) provide for a simplified determination of combustion parameters such as ignition delay interval, burn rate and burn duration.

The log \(P{V^{\bar \gamma }}\) measurement method is applied in a single cylinder engine study of the effects of EGR flow rates on the combustion-emission characteristics of methanol fuel. The results obtained for methanol are compared to those for a gasoline at corresponding engine operating conditions and EGR levels. Methanol exhibits shorter ignition delay intervals and burn durations than gasoline. Ignition delays and burn durations for both fuels are extended as engine load is decreased, as the fuel-air mixture is made lean and as the EGR level is increased. With increasing spark advance, ignition delay periods for both fuels are extended while burn durations are shortened. At the same equivalence ratio, air mass flow rate, speed, spark timing, and EGR rate, engine power output with methanol is about 10 percent higher than with gasoline. Under similar conditions but with constant power output, volume based fuel consumption with methanol is about twice that with gasoline, and energy utilization is more efficient. Methanol exhibits lower indicated specific GO emissions at ΦFA values greater than ~1.05, and higher CO emissions at leaner mixture ratios. NO emissions with methanol are lower than those with gasoline at common operating conditions, mixture ratios and EGR levels. HC emissions with methanol are generally higher than those with gasoline at corresponding non-misfiring mixture ratios and EGR levels. Lean misfire limits with methanol are extended by about 0.10 equivalence ratios relative to those of gasoline at all EGR levels investigated. Methanol has the greater tolerance to EGR.


Ignition Delay Combustion Analysis Engine Operating Condition Single Cylinder Engine Fuel Rich Condition 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. A. Harrington
    • 1
  1. 1.Ford Motor CompanyDearbornUSA

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