Abstract

This paper presents a newly developed method using rapid prototyping to develop gas engine cylinder heads with optimized charge motion characteristics to adapt to lean-burn and Miller combustion process requirements. The geometry in close vicinity to the inlet valve seats was designed to increase swirl and flow performance . A 3D printer was used to realize a rapid prototyping concept for the testing of multiple designs, the effects of the different designs were measured using a static flow test bench and a laser-optical method to visualize flow patterns. The results of the static flow bench tests showed potentially higher flow and swirl performance, with one high-swirl version proving beneficial specifically for lean-combustion and one high-flow version matching the Miller combustion requirements. The two cylinder head versions were then manufactured and the lean-combustion version was tested for on-engine performance on a sewage-gas driven lean-combustion engine. It has been shown that the cylinder head generates higher swirl on the test bench but achieves only a slight increase in combustion speed on the test engine. The potential to increase engine efficiency by intensifying swirl is therefore considered exploited. Research has further shown the CoV was reduced by 0.3 to 1.2 percent. Charge exchange losses have also been demonstrated to decrease at all tested engine settings. It has further been found that higher swirl intensity has a positive impact on engine emission levels, as the engine out CO emission can be significantly reduced.

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