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Demonstration of a Bench-Top Method for Quantification of a Fuel’s Charge Cooling Effectiveness, 03-9497

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Principal Investigators
Manfred Amann
Charles E. Roberts

Inclusive Dates:  07/06/04 – 01/06/05

Background - SwRI has been performing ratings tests for racing fuels during the last three years to provide quantified measurements of key fuel parameters that affect engine performance. One key parameter affecting engine performance is the fuel's charge-cooling effectiveness. Charge cooling is the result of the vaporization of liquid fuel in the intake-air system of the engine. When liquid fuel is injected into the inlet air-stream, heat energy from the air stream is absorbed by the liquid fuel, resulting in fuel vaporization and a temperature reduction of the air/fuel mixture. The cooled inlet air fills the engine's combustion chambers more fully and efficiently, allowing higher engine power output.

Approach - The objective of this project is to develop a bench-top test method to quantify the charge-cooling effectiveness of single component fuels as well as multicomponent fuel blends of known composition. SwRI has previously designed, built, and tested a charge-cooling test apparatus to measure the temperature of the air/fuel mixture within a mock engine intake system. This technique, however, provided limited success at quantifying charge-cooling effectiveness, especially for complex fuel blends. To quantify the charge-cooling effectiveness of a test fuel more accurately, a much improved measurement technique has been developed. Instead of quantifying the charge-cooling effect by measuring the intake air temperature changes while injecting fuel, measuring the changes in air mass flow rate directly is utilized.

Accomplishments - To date, the test bench setup including installation of downstream blower, air mass flow measuring equipment and all instrumentation are complete. Additionally, initial verification tests have been conducted.

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