Special Issue "Advances in Alternative Fuel and Low Greenhouse Gas Emissions for the Internal Combustion Engine-Based Powertrains"

A special issue of Applied Sciences (ISSN 2076-3417). This special issue belongs to the section "Energy Science and Technology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 October 2020) | Viewed by 6804

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Carlo Beatrice
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
CNR-IM, Istituto Motori, Via G. Marconi 4, 80125 Napoli, Italy
Interests: internal combustion engines; thermo-fluidynamics of M.C.I.; engine–fuel interaction; alternative engine fuels; engine control; design and development of high efficiency powertrain systems; alternative propulsion systems
Dr. Gabriele Di Blasio
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
CNR-IM, Istituto Motori, Via G. Marconi 4, 80125 Napoli, Italy
Interests: advanced propulsion systems; alternative fuels; internal combustion engines
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Global energy and mobility systems are facing the difficult challenge to cut the net green-house gas emissions to zero in a about three decades.

Referring to the Europe case, the 2030 SET-PLAN targets are as follows: at least a 40% cut in greenhouse gas emissions compared with 1990, at least 32% of the total energy consumption from renewable energy, and at least a 32.5% increase in energy efficiency. As a long-term goal (2050), the EU aims to cut its emissions by 80%–95% compared with 1990 levels.

Looking at the transport sector, it remains very dependent on oil, with oil-derived fuels accounting for about 95% of the final energy consumption in transport, while about 98% of the circulating cars are powered by internal combustion engines (including hybrids). Therefore, it will very difficult to fully decarbonize the transportation sector in two/three decades, when almost all of the vehicles are powered by combustion engines that mainly use fossil fuels.

In order to achieve the CO₂ emission targets, it is general accepted that there is not a bullet solution, but multiple and simultaneous concepts of energy carriers and powertrain technologies are necessary. The majority of “sector” studies show that the target of a sustainable on-road transport requires a progressive increase in alternative fully-renewable fuels, in particular, to supply all of the transport sectors for which battery and fuel-cell electric vehicles will not fully satisfy the mobility demand.

Then, the gaseous and liquid renewable fuels used in hybrid thermal-electric powertrains will have a strategic role in the de-carbonization roadmap of the road transport in developed countries. In this context, automotive fuel technology is rapidly evolving towards alternative solutions, suitable for different engine systems, namely: spark and compression ignition, gaseous and liquid, oxygenated compounds and so on—all aimed at being renewable and sustainable.

The present Special Issue aims to give an overview of the most recent advances in the field of alternative fuels for the automotive sector, collecting high quality papers from important research teams in the world, who are working on engine–fuel interactions and exhaust-after treatment-fuel interaction, CO2 minimization from thermal engines, and new engines for new renewable fuels.

Dr. Carlo Beatrice
Dr. Gabriele Di Blasio
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • Alternative automotive fuels
  • Sustainable mobility
  • CO2 reduction from internal combustion engines
  • Pollutant emission reduction from thermal powertrains

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Article
Experimental Assessment on Exploiting Low Carbon Ethanol Fuel in a Light-Duty Dual-Fuel Compression Ignition Engine
Appl. Sci. 2020, 10(20), 7182; https://doi.org/10.3390/app10207182 - 15 Oct 2020
Cited by 25 | Viewed by 1639
Abstract
Compression ignition (CI) engines are widely used in modern society, but they are also recognized as a significative source of harmful and human hazard emissions such as particulate matter (PM) and nitrogen oxides (NOx). Moreover, the combustion of fossil fuels is related to [...] Read more.
Compression ignition (CI) engines are widely used in modern society, but they are also recognized as a significative source of harmful and human hazard emissions such as particulate matter (PM) and nitrogen oxides (NOx). Moreover, the combustion of fossil fuels is related to the growing amount of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, such as carbon dioxide (CO2). Stringent emission regulatory programs, the transition to cleaner and more advanced powertrains and the use of lower carbon fuels are driving forces for the improvement of diesel engines in terms of overall efficiency and engine-out emissions. Ethanol, a light alcohol and lower carbon fuel, is a promising alternative fuel applicable in the dual-fuel (DF) combustion mode to mitigate CO2 and also engine-out PM emissions. In this context, this work aims to assess the maximum fuel substitution ratio (FSR) and the impact on CO2 and PM emissions of different nozzle holes number injectors, 7 and 9, in the DF operating mode. The analysis was conducted within engine working constraints and considered the influence on maximum FSR of calibration parameters, such as combustion phasing, rail pressure, injection pattern and exhaust gas recirculation (EGR). The experimental tests were carried out on a single-cylinder light-duty CI engine with ethanol introduced via port fuel injection (PFI) and direct injection of diesel in two operating points, 1500 and 2000 rpm and at 5 and 8 bar of brake mean effective pressure (BMEP), respectively. Noise and the coefficient of variation in indicated mean effective pressure (COVIMEP) limits have been chosen as practical constraints. In particular, the experimental analysis assesses for each parameter or their combination the highest ethanol fraction that can be injected. To discriminate the effect on ethanol fraction and the combustion process of each parameter, a one-at-a-time-factor approach was used. The results show that, in both operating points, the EGR reduces the maximum ethanol fraction injectable; nevertheless, the ethanol addition leads to outstanding improvement in terms of engine-out PM. The adoption of a 9 hole diesel injector, for lower load, allows reaching a higher fraction of ethanol in all test conditions with an improvement in combustion noise, on average 3 dBA, while near-zero PM emissions and a reduction can be noticed, on the average of 1 g/kWh, and CO2 compared with the fewer nozzle holes case. Increasing the load insensitivity to different holes number was observed. Full article
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Article
Assessment of Direct Injected Liquefied Petroleum Gas-Diesel Blends for Ultra-Low Soot Combustion Engine Application
Appl. Sci. 2020, 10(14), 4949; https://doi.org/10.3390/app10144949 - 18 Jul 2020
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1578
Abstract
Technological and economic concerns correlated to fulfilling future emissions and CO2 standards require great research efforts to define an alternative solution for low emissions and highly efficient propulsion systems. Alternative fuel formulation could contribute to this aim. Liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) with [...] Read more.
Technological and economic concerns correlated to fulfilling future emissions and CO2 standards require great research efforts to define an alternative solution for low emissions and highly efficient propulsion systems. Alternative fuel formulation could contribute to this aim. Liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) with lower carbon content than other fossil fuels and which is easily vaporized at ambient conditions has the advantage of lowering CO2 emissions and optimizing the combustion process. Liquefied petroleum gas characteristics and availability makes the fuel a promising alternative for internal combustion engines. The possible combination of using it in high-efficiency compression ignition engines makes it worth analyzing the innovative method of using LPG as a blend component in diesel. Few relevant studies are detectable in literature in this regard. In this study, two blends containing diesel and LPG, in volume ratios 20/80 and 35/65, respectively, were formulated and utilized. Their effects on combustion and emissions performance were assessed by performing proper experimental tests on a modern light-duty single-cylinder engine test rig. Reference operating points at conventional engine calibration settings were examined. A specific exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) parametrization was performed evaluating the LPG blends’ potential in reducing the smoke emissions at standard engine-out NOx levels. The results confirm excellent NOx-smoke trade-off improvements with smoke reductions up to 95% at similar NOx and efficiency. Unburnt emissions slightly increase, and to acceptable levels. Improvements, in terms of indicated specific fuel consumption (ISFC), are detected in the range of 1–3%, as well as the CO2 decrease proportionally to the mixing ratio. Full article
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Article
Comparative Study on the Energetic and Ecologic Parameters of Dual Fuels (Diesel–NG and HVO–Biogas) and Conventional Diesel Fuel in a CI Engine
Appl. Sci. 2020, 10(1), 359; https://doi.org/10.3390/app10010359 - 03 Jan 2020
Cited by 27 | Viewed by 3123
Abstract
The Article presents the results of the experimental research and numerical analysis of a compression ignition (CI) engine adapted for running on dual fuels of different composition (diesel and natural gas, diesel and biogas, biodiesel and natural gas, and biodiesel and biogas). The [...] Read more.
The Article presents the results of the experimental research and numerical analysis of a compression ignition (CI) engine adapted for running on dual fuels of different composition (diesel and natural gas, diesel and biogas, biodiesel and natural gas, and biodiesel and biogas). The main goal was to find out the impact of different dual fuels on energy performance and emissions depending on the start of injection (SOI) of diesel and the crank angle degree (CAD). Pure conventional diesel fuel and second generation hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) (Neste) was used in the research. Natural gas contained 97 vol. % of methane. Biogas (biomethane) was simulated using a methane and carbon dioxide blend consisting of 60 vol. % of methane and 40 vol. % of carbon dioxide. Dual (liquid and gaseous) fuels were used in the tests, with the energy share of liquid fuels accounting for 40% and gas for 60%. The research results have shown that having replaced conventional diesel fuel with dual fuel, engine’s BTE declined by 11.9–16.5%. The use of methane in the dual fuel blend reduced CO2 volumetric fraction in the exhaust gases by 17–20%, while biomethane increased CO2 volumetric fraction by 10–14%. Dual fuel significantly increased CO and HC emissions, but NOx volumetric fraction decreased by 67–82% and smoke by 23–39%. The numerical analysis of the combustion process revealed changes in the ROHR (Rate of Heat Release) that affected engine efficiency and exhaust emissions was done by AVL (Anstalt für Verbrennungskraftmaschinen List) BOOST program. Full article
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