Continued interest in kinetically-modulated combustion regimes, such as HCCI and PCCI, poses a significant challenge in controlling the ignition timing due to the lack of direct control of combustion phasing hardware available in traditional SI and CI engines. Chemical kinetic mechanisms, validated based on fundamental data from experiments like rapid compression machines and shock tubes, offer reasonably accurate predictions of ignition timing; however utilizing these requires high computational cost making them impractical for use in engine control schemes. Empirically-derived correlations offer faster control, but are generally not valid beyond the narrow range of conditions over which they were derived.

This study discusses initial work in the development of an ignition correlation based on a detailed chemical kinetic mechanism for three component gasoline surrogate, composed of n-heptane, iso-octane and toluene, or toluene reference fuel (TRF). Simulations are conducted over a wide range of conditions including temperature, pressure, equivalence ratio and dilution for a range of tri-component blends in order to produce ignition delay time and investigate trends in ignition as pressure, equivalence ratio, temperature and fuel reactivity are varied. A modified, Arrhenius-based power law formulation will be used in a future study to fit the computed ignition delay times.

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