As a way of reducing the amount of particulate matter (PM) contained in the exhaust gas, diesel particulate filter (DPF) is widely used. To keep the condition of DPF normal and effective, estimation of the amount of PM deposits in the DPF is important. The estimation is mainly conducted based on the value of pressure drop across the DPF. Occasionally, the value of the pressure drop rises suddenly and it leads to overestimation of the amount of PM deposits. In order to elucidate the cause of the sudden pressure drop increase phenomenon, this paper first reveals the engine operating conditions which invoke this phenomenon. The authors also have developed a visualization method to realize the wide-perspective internal observation of the DPF. The observation experiment has been conducted with a commercial engine and DPF under the revealed conditions. Experimental results make clear that the phenomenon is caused by PM deposit layer collapse and channel plugging.

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