The DI (Direct Injection) Diesel engine, which is inherently capable of achieving very low CO2 emissions, is affected by PM (Particulate Matter) that is the typical emission of turbulent diffusion flames and has the drawback of high NOx (nitrogen oxides) emissions. In Europe, the recent progress of diesel technology allows complying, with difficulty, with the EURO IV stage of European light duty vehicles regulation and limits planned for 2008 seem at the moment unachievable without a strong and innovative improvement of the combustion system configuration. In the present paper a new concept of highly diluted and low temperature combustion is presented and analyzed. In particular the mechanism of soot suppression at low flame temperature is achieved by the use of high-rate cooled exhaust gas recirculation. Tests were carried out on a medium duty engine equipped with a mechanical in-line injection pump and two modem common rail prototypes engines.

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