Recent work in homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI) engine control has focused on the use of variable valve timing (VVT) as a near term implementation strategy. Valve timing has a significant influence on combustion phasing and can be implemented with cam-based VVT systems already available in production vehicles. However, these systems introduce cylinder coupling via a shared actuator. This paper presents a model predictive control (MPC) framework that explicitly accounts for this intercylinder coupling as a constraint on the system. The execution time step of this MPC controller is shorter than the prediction time step, enabling consideration of a common actuator across otherwise independent systems as the engine cycle progresses. This enables effective use of the cylinder independent actuators to augment the shared actuator in achieving the control objectives. Experiments on a multicylinder HCCI engine test bed validate this approach to handling coupled actuation and illustrate effective use of cylinder independent actuators in response to limited capabilities of the shared actuator.

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