The simultaneous reduction of nitrogen oxide emissions and particulate matter in a compression ignition environment is quite difficult due to the soot/NOx trade off and it is often accompanied by fuel consumption penalties. Thus, fuel reformulation is also essential for the curtailment of diesel pollutant emissions along with the optimization of combustion-related design factors and exhaust after-treatment equipment. Various solutions have been proposed for improving the combustion process of conventional diesel engines and reducing the exhaust emissions without making serious modifications on the engine, one of which is the use of natural gas as a supplement for the conventional diesel fuel (Dual Fuel Natural Gas/Diesel Engines). Natural gas is considered to be quite promising since its cost is relative lower compared to conventional fuels and it has high auto-ignition temperature compared to other gaseous fuels facilitating thus its use on future and existing fleet of small high speed direct injection diesel engines without serious modifications on their structure. Moreover, natural gas does not generate particulates when burned in engines. The most common natural gas/diesel operating mode is referred to as the Pilot Ignited Natural Gas Diesel Engine (P.I.N.G.D.E). Here, the primary fuel is natural gas that controls the engine power output, while the pilot diesel fuel injected near the end of the compression stroke autoignites and creates ignition sources for the surrounding gaseous fuel mixture to be burned. Previous research studies have shown that the main disadvantage of this dual fuel combustion is its negative impact on engine efficiency compared to the normal diesel operation, while carbon monoxide emissions are also increased. The specific engine operating mode, in comparison with conventional diesel fuel operation, suffers from low brake engine efficiency and high carbon monoxide (CO) emissions. The influence becomes more evident at part load conditions. Intake charge temperature, pilot fuel quantity and injection advance are some of the engine parameters which influence significantly the combustion mechanism inside the combustion chamber of a Pilot Ignited Natural Gas Diesel Engine. In order to be examined the effect of these parameters on performance and exhaust emissions of a natural gas/diesel engine a theoretical investigation has been conducted by using a numerical simulation. In order to be examined the effect of increased air inlet temperature combined with increased pilot fuel quantity and its injection timing on performance and exhaust emissions of a pilot ignited natural gas-diesel engine, a theoretical investigation has been conducted by using a comprehensive two-zone phenomenological model. The results concerning engine performance characteristics and NO, CO and Soot emissions for various engine operating conditions (i.e. load and engine speed), comes from the employment of a comprehensive two-zone phenomenological model which had been applied on a high-speed natural gas/diesel engine. The main objectives of this comparative assessment are to record and to comparatively evaluate the relative impact each one of the above mentioned parameters on engine performance characteristics and emitted pollutants. Furthermore, the present investigation deals with the determining of optimum combinations between the parameters referred before since at high engine load conditions, the simultaneous increase some of the specific parameters may lead in undesirable results about engine performance characteristics. The conclusions of the specific investigation will be extremely valuable for the application of this technology on existing DI diesel engines.

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