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Research Papers: Fuel Combustion

Numerical Investigation on the Effects of Flame Propagation in Rotary Engine Performance With Leakage and Different Recess Shapes Using Three-Dimensional Computational Fluid Dynamics

[+] Author and Article Information
Thirumal Valavan Harikrishnan

Engine Development Group VRDE,
Defence R&D Organization,
Ahmednagar, Maharashtra 414006, India
e-mail: valavanthirumal@vrde.drdo.in

Suryanarayana Challa

Engine Development Group VRDE,
Defence R&D Organization,
Ahmednagar, Maharashtra 414006, India
e-mail: snchalla@vrde.drdo.in

Dachapalli Radhakrishna

Engine Development Group VRDE,
Defence R&D Organization,
Ahmednagar, Maharashtra 414006, India
e-mail: dradhakrishna@vrde.drdo.in

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Advanced Energy Systems Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENERGY RESOURCES TECHNOLOGY. Manuscript received August 31, 2015; final manuscript received March 3, 2016; published online May 25, 2016. Editor: Hameed Metghalchi.

J. Energy Resour. Technol 138(5), 052210 (May 25, 2016) (17 pages) Paper No: JERT-15-1325; doi: 10.1115/1.4033572 History: Received August 31, 2015; Revised March 03, 2016

This study was carried out with an objective to develop a 3D simulation methodology for rotary engine combustion study and to investigate the effect of recess shapes on flame travel within the rotating combustion chamber and its effects on engine performance. The relative location of spark plugs with respect to the combustion chamber has significant effect on flame travel, affecting the overall engine performance. The computations were carried out with three different recess shapes using iso-octane (C8H18) fuel, and flame front propagation was studied at different widths from spark location. Initially, a detailed leakage study was carried out and the flow fields were compared with available experimental results. The results for first recess with compression ratio 9.1 showed that the flow and vortex formations were similar to that of actual model. The capability of the 3D model to predict the combustion reaction rate precisely as that of practical engine is presented with comparison to experimental results. This study showed that the flame propagation is dominant toward the leading apex of the rotor chamber, and the air/fuel mixture region in the engine midplane, between the two spark plugs, has very low flame propagation compared to the region in the vicinity of spark. The air/fuel mixture in midplane toward the leading apex burns partially and most of the mixture toward the trailing apex is left unburnt. Recommendations have been made for optimal positioning of the spark plugs along the lateral axis of the engine. In the comparison study with different recess shapes, lesser cavity length corresponding to a higher compression ratio (CR) of 9.6 showed faster flame propagation toward leading side. Also, mass trapped in working chamber reduced and developed higher burn rate and peak pressure resulting in better fuel conversion efficiency. Third recess with lesser CR showed reduced burn rates and lower peak pressure.

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References

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Figures

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Fig. 1

Complete meshed model of the fluid geometry

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Fig. 2

Leakage cells between chambers

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Fig. 3

Engine test setup with pressure sensor fitment

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Fig. 4

Motored pressure with different leakage layers

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Fig. 5

Cold flow reference—intake stroke at 510 CAD

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Fig. 6

Cold flow study—intake flow velocities at 490 CAD

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Fig. 7

Cold flow study—intake flow velocities at 525 CAD

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Fig. 8

Cold flow reference—compression stroke at 367 CAD

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Fig. 9

Cold flow study—compression chamber flow velocities at 360 CAD

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Fig. 10

Cold flow study—compression chamber flow velocities at 370 CAD

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Fig. 11

(a) Full cycle normalized pressure—100 cycle-averaged experimental and simulation pressure results with twin spark. (b) Cumulative heat release—experimental and simulation results with twin spark.

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Fig. 12

Variance of peak pressure—experimental pressure with two sparks (7000 rpm—100 cycles)

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Fig. 13

Description of the flame propagation mechanism

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Fig. 14

Progress variable of combustion (RVB) along the spark plug plane at (a) 530 CAD, (b) 540 CAD, and (c) 550 CAD

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Fig. 15

Progress variable of combustion (RVB) along the engine midplane at (a) 530 CAD, (b) 540 CAD, and (c) 550 CAD

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Fig. 16

Progress variable of combustion (RVB) along the spark plug plane at (a) 560 CAD, (b) 570 CAD, and (c) 580 CAD

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Fig. 17

Progress variable of combustion (RVB) along the engine midplane at (a) 560 CAD, (b) 570 CAD, and (c) 580 CAD

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Fig. 18

Progress variable of combustion (RVB) in multiple plane 3D rotation views: (a) 525 CAD, (b) 535 CAD, (c) 545 CAD, (d)555 CAD, (e) 565 CAD, (f) 575 CAD, and (g) 585 CAD

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Fig. 19

Three different recess shapes used for study

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Fig. 20

Pressure curves for different recess shapes

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Fig. 21

(a) Trapped mass of gases for three different recess shapes. (b) Turbulent kinetic energy in intake chamber with leakage from combustion chamber.

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Fig. 22

Fuel scalar distribution with different recesses at 735 CAD: (a) Recess_Shape1, (b) Recess_Shape2, and (c)Recess_Shape3

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Fig. 23

Velocity distribution with different recesses at 540 CAD: (a) Recess_Shape1, (b) Recess_Shape2, and (c)Recess_Shape3

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Fig. 24

Temperature distribution with different recesses at 580 CAD: (a) Recess_Shape1, (b) Recess_Shape2, and (c)Recess_Shape3

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Fig. 25

Pressure distribution with different recesses at 540 CAD: (a) Recess_Shape1, (b) Recess_Shape2, and (c)Recess_Shape3

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Fig. 26

Fuel scalar distribution with different recesses at 585 CAD: (a) Recess_Shape1, (b) Recess_Shape2, and (c) Recess_Shape3

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