A CFD model of a HATZ diesel engine was developed for the purpose of simulating low temperature combustion (LTC) of surrogate diesel fuels for the Fuels for Advanced Combustion Engines (FACE). Initial validation of the model was performed using n-heptane data from a single cylinder HATZ diesel engine. Simulations were run with both a detailed n-heptane mechanism and several reduced mechanisms to determine the suitability of using a reduced mechanism to capture the main ignition characteristics and emissions. It was found that a 173 species n-heptane mechanism predicts start of combustion (SOC) within 0.5 crank angle degrees of the detailed 561 species mechanism. The 173 species mechanism required 27 hours of computational time to reach the end of the simulation whereas the 561 species detailed mechanism required 41 hours under the same conditions. Two additional reduced mechanisms, containing 85 and 35 species, were provided reasonable accuracy with a computational time of 8 hours and 2 hours, respectively. Due to the varying physical and chemical properties of the FACE surrogates, a sensitivity analysis of the effects of the physical properties was conducted by changing the n-heptane physical properties to those of n-hexadecane while keeping the chemistry the same. As expected, when the fuel properties of n-hexadecane (which is less volatile than n-heptane) were used with the n-heptane kinetics, SOC was delayed and the net heat release rate was reduced.

The FACE fuels were developed to fulfill the need for research grade fuels that are able to represent common refinery stream fuels. Since the FACE fuels consist of hundreds of fuel components, it is not feasible to model the actual FACE fuels in a full-scale engine model. An alternative is to develop surrogates consisting of relatively few species for which detailed mechanisms are available. Even then this mechanism would need to be reduced to make the computation practical. For this work, a detailed diesel surrogate mechanism was reduced from 4016 species to 1046 species to match the characteristics for FACE fuels 1, 3, 5, 8, and 9. The surrogates only contain 4–7 species. Using the single chemical mechanism to represent five surrogate FACE fuels, it was found that ∼200°C of air preheat was required to achieve autoignition in the HATZ model compared to the 130°C of air preheat required experimentally. Initial runs have found that there were similar trends in SOC and heat release between the FACE fuel surrogate experiments and simulations for the respective fuels. Future work will require improvements on the single chemical mechanism to represent the five surrogate FACE fuels.

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