Research Papers: Fuel Combustion

Multi-Objective Optimization Model Development to Support Sizing Decisions for a Novel Reciprocating Steam Engine Technology

[+] Author and Article Information
J. M. Hamel

Assistant Professor
Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Seattle University,
Seattle, WA 98122
e-mail: hamelj@seattleu.edu

Devin Allphin

Senior Powertrain Engineer,
Mercedes Benz Research & Development,
Long Beach, CA 90810
e-mail: devin.allphin@daimler.com

Joshua Elroy

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
California State University,
Long Beach, CA 90840
e-mail: joshuaelroy@yahoo.com

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Internal Combustion Engine Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENERGY RESOURCES TECHNOLOGY. Manuscript received August 17, 2017; final manuscript received January 31, 2018; published online March 29, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Esmail M. A. Mokheimer.

J. Energy Resour. Technol 140(7), 072204 (Mar 29, 2018) (10 pages) Paper No: JERT-17-1444; doi: 10.1115/1.4039611 History: Received August 17, 2017; Revised January 31, 2018

A system-level computational model of a recently patented and prototyped novel steam engine technology was developed from first principles for the express purpose of performing design optimization studies for the engine's inventors. The developed system model consists of numerous submodels including a flow model of the intake process, a dynamic model of the intake valve response, a pressure model of the engine cylinder, a kinematic model of the engine piston, and an output model that determines engine performance parameters. A crank-angle discretization strategy was employed to capture the performance of engine throughout a full cycle of operation, thus requiring all engine design submodels to be evaluated at each crank angle of interest. To produce a system model with sufficient computational speed to be useful within optimization algorithms, which must exercise the system level model repeatedly, various simplifying assumptions and modeling approximations were utilized. The model was tested by performing a series of multi-objective design optimization case studies using the geometry and operating conditions of the prototype engine as a baseline. The results produced were determined to properly capture the fundamental behavior of the engine as observed in the operation of the prototype and demonstrated that the design of engine technology could be improved over the baseline using the developed computational model. Furthermore, the results of this study demonstrate the applicability of using a multi-objective optimization-driven approach to conduct conceptual design efforts for various engine system technologies.

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Fig. 3

Engine P–V diagram

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Fig. 1

Harmonic steam engine

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Fig. 4

Engine simulation process

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Fig. 5

Intake valve layout

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Fig. 6

Intake valve sample CFD model [17]

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Fig. 7

Intake valve flow region [17]

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Fig. 8

Intake valve analytic flow model [17]

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Fig. 9

General optimization model

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Fig. 10

Multi-objective optimization example

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Fig. 11

Engine optimization model

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Fig. 12

Sample engine model P–V diagram

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Fig. 13

Sample engine model results

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Fig. 14

Engine optimization study results

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Fig. 15

Engine optimization study scatter plot




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