Using Biofuel Tracers to Study Alternative Combustion Regimes Page: 3 of 14
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Proceedings of the AMS 10
Nuclear Instruments & Methods in Physics Research, Section B (NIMB)
Using Biofuel Tracers to Study Alternative Combustion Regimes
J.H. Macka*, D.L. Flowers, B.A. Buchholze, R.W. Dibblea
a Combustion Analysis Laboratory, University of California Berkeley, Berkeley, CA 94720 USA
b Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, CA 94551 USA
Center for Accelerator Mass Spectrometry, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, CA
* Corresponding Author: Univ. of California, Hesse Hall 50-B, Berkeley, CA 94720 USA Fax: 1-510-642-
1850, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Interest in the use of alternative fuels and combustion regimes is increasing as the price of petroleum
climbs. The inherently higher efficiency of Diesel engines has led to increased adoption of Diesels in
Europe, capturing approximately 40% of the new passenger car market. Unfortunately, lower CO2
emissions are countered with higher nitrogen oxides (NOx) and particulate matter (PM) emissions, and
higher noise. Noise and PM have traditionally been the obstacles toward consumer acceptance of Diesel
passenger cars in North America, while NOx (a key component in photochemical smog) has been more of
an engineering challenge. Diesels are lean burning (combustion with excess oxygen) and reducing NOx to
N2 in an oxygen rich environment is difficult. Adding oxygenated compounds to the fuel helps reduce PM
emissions, but relying on fuel alone to reduce PM is unrealistic. Keeping peak combustion temperature
below 1700 K prevents NOx formation. Altering the combustion regime to burn at temperatures below the
NOx threshold and accept a wide variety of fuels seems like a promising alternative for future engines.
Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) is a possible solution. Fuel and air are well mixed
prior to intake into a cylinder (homogeneous charge) and ignition occurs by compression of the fuel-air
mixture by the piston. HCCI is rapid and relatively cool, producing little NOx and PM. Unfortunately, it
is hard to control since HCCI is initiated by temperature and pressure instead of a spark or direct fuel
injection. We investigate biofuel HCCI combustion, and use intrinsically labeled biofuels as tracers of
HCCI combustion. Data from tracer experiments are used to validate combustion modeling.
Biofuels, Tracers, Combustion, HCCI, 14C
3.1 Historical use of Tracers in Internal Combustion Engines
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Mack, J H; Flowers, D L; Buchholz, B A & Dibble, R W. Using Biofuel Tracers to Study Alternative Combustion Regimes, article, February 14, 2006; Livermore, California. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc888945/m1/3/: accessed December 10, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.