It is always desirable for a heavy-duty compression-ignition engine, such as a diesel engine, to possess a capability of using alternate liquid fuels without significant hardware modification to the engine baseline. Because fuel properties vary between various types of liquid fuels, it is important to understand the impact and effects of the fuel properties on engine operating and output parameters. This paper intends and attempts to achieve that understanding and to predict the qualitative effects by studying analytically and qualitatively how a heavy-duty compression-ignition engine would respond to the variation of fuel properties. The fuel properties considered in this paper mainly include the fuel density, compressibility, heating value, viscosity, cetane number, and distillation temperature range. The qualitative direct and end effects of the fuel properties on engine bulk fuel injection, in-cylinder combustion, and outputs are analyzed and predicted. Understanding these effects can be useful in analyzing and designing a compression-ignition engine for using alternate liquid fuels.

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