Nowadays, many urban buses for public transportation are fuelled by compressed natural gas (CNG), due to its potential for energy saving and pollutant reduction, with specific reference to particulate matter emissions. However, turbocharging is required to recover the gaseous-fuel related power gap with respect to more traditional engines running on liquid fuels. Therefore, turbolag reduction is fundamental to achieve high performance during engine transients. Significant support for the study of turbocharged CNG engines and guidelines for the turbomatching process can be provided by 1D numerical simulation tools. In this paper, the topic of turbolag reduction is analyzed, and different strategies, namely, Early-Exhaust Valve Opening-Variable Valve Actuation (E-EVO-VVA) and spark timing control for combustion retard (ComR), are analyzed by means of a specifically developed and calibrated GT-POWER® engine model. Tip-in maneuvers in which the engine was coupled to a torque hydraulic converter under stall conditions were investigated, so as to reproduce a typical load transient condition for an urban bus accelerating from engine idle. The best improvement of turbolag was obtained by combining E-EVO-VVA and ComR, with a reduction of turbolag ranging from 60% to 70%. When a limit on the incylinder pressure is introduced, in order to prevent excessive exhaust valve mechanical stresses, the higher achievable reduction in turbolag was found to be between 35% and 45%.

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