Variable Valve Actuation

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Many approaches exist to enable advanced mode, low temperature combustion systems for diesel engines - such as premixed charge compression ignition (PCCI), Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) or other HCCI-like combustion modes. The fuel properties and the quantity, distribution and temperature profile of air, fuel and residual fraction in the cylinder can have a marked effect on the heat release rate and combustion phasing. Figure 1 shows that a systems approach is required for HCCI-like combustion. While the exact requirements remain unclear (and will vary depending on fuel, engine size and application), some form of substantially variable valve actuation is ... continued below

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Gutterman, Jeffrey & Lasley, A. J. August 31, 2008.

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Many approaches exist to enable advanced mode, low temperature combustion systems for diesel engines - such as premixed charge compression ignition (PCCI), Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) or other HCCI-like combustion modes. The fuel properties and the quantity, distribution and temperature profile of air, fuel and residual fraction in the cylinder can have a marked effect on the heat release rate and combustion phasing. Figure 1 shows that a systems approach is required for HCCI-like combustion. While the exact requirements remain unclear (and will vary depending on fuel, engine size and application), some form of substantially variable valve actuation is a likely element in such a system. Variable valve actuation, for both intake and exhaust valve events, is a potent tool for controlling the parameters that are critical to HCCI-like combustion and expanding its operational range. Additionally, VVA can be used to optimize the combustion process as well as exhaust temperatures and impact the after treatment system requirements and its associated cost. Delphi Corporation has major manufacturing and product development and applied R&D expertise in the valve train area. Historical R&D experience includes the development of fully variable electro-hydraulic valve train on research engines as well as several generations of mechanical VVA for gasoline systems. This experience has enabled us to evaluate various implementations and determine the strengths and weaknesses of each. While a fully variable electro-hydraulic valve train system might be the 'ideal' solution technically for maximum flexibility in the timing and control of the valve events, its complexity, associated costs, and high power consumption make its implementation on low cost high volume applications unlikely. Conversely, a simple mechanical system might be a low cost solution but not deliver the flexibility required for HCCI operation. After modeling more than 200 variations of the mechanism it was determined that the single cam design did not have enough flexibility to satisfy three critical OEM requirements simultaneously, (maximum valve lift variation, intake valve opening timing and valve closing duration), and a new approach would be necessary. After numerous internal design reviews including several with the OEM a dual cam design was developed that had the flexibility to meet all motion requirements. The second cam added complexity to the mechanism however the cost was offset by the deletion of the electric motor required in the previous design. New patent applications including detailed drawings and potential valve motion profiles were generated and alternate two cam designs were proposed and evaluated for function, cost, reliability and durability. Hardware was designed and built and testing of sample hardware was successfully completed on an engine test stand. The mechanism developed during the course of this investigation can be applied by Original Equipment Manufacturers, (OEM), to their advanced diesel engines with the ultimate goal of reducing emissions and improving fuel economy. The objectives are: (1) Develop an optimal, cost effective, variable valve actuation (VVA) system for advanced low temperature diesel combustion processes. (2) Design and model alternative mechanical approaches and down-select for optimum design. (3) Build and demonstrate a mechanism capable of application on running engines.

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  • Report No.: None
  • Grant Number: FC26-05NT42483
  • DOI: 10.2172/993477 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 993477
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc1012301

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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Creation Date

  • August 31, 2008

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Oct. 14, 2017, 8:36 a.m.

Description Last Updated

  • Oct. 25, 2017, 4:08 p.m.

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Gutterman, Jeffrey & Lasley, A. J. Variable Valve Actuation, report, August 31, 2008; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc1012301/: accessed July 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.