Experimental Evaluation of SI Engine Operation Supplemented by Hydrogen Rich Gas from a Compact Plasma Boosted Reformer

Paper #:
  • 2000-01-2206

Published:
  • 2000-06-19
DOI:
  • 10.4271/2000-01-2206
Citation:
Green, J., Domingo, N., Storey, J., Wagner, R. et al., "Experimental Evaluation of SI Engine Operation Supplemented by Hydrogen Rich Gas from a Compact Plasma Boosted Reformer," SAE Technical Paper 2000-01-2206, 2000, doi:10.4271/2000-01-2206.
Pages:
10
Abstract:

It is well known that hydrogen addition to spark-ignited (SI) engines can reduce exhaust emissions and increase efficiency. Micro plasmatron fuel converters can be used for onboard generation of hydrogen-rich gas by partial oxidation of a wide range of fuels. These plasma-boosted microreformers are compact, rugged, and provide rapid response. With hydrogen supplement to the main fuel, SI engines can run very lean resulting in a large reduction in nitrogen oxides (NO x ) emissions relative to stoichiometric combustion without a catalytic converter. This paper presents experimental results from a microplasmatron fuel converter operating under variable oxygen to carbon ratios. Tests have also been carried out to evaluate the effect of the addition of a microplasmatron fuel converter generated gas in a 1995 2.3-L four-cylinder SI production engine. The tests were performed with and without hydrogen-rich gas produced by the plasma boosted fuel converter with gasoline. A one hundred fold reduction in NO x due to very lean operation was obtained under certain conditions. An advantage of onboard plasma- boosted generation of hydrogen-rich gas is that it is used only when required and can be readily turned on and off. Substantial NO x reduction should also be obtainable by heavy exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) facilitated by use of hydrogen-rich gas with stoichiometric operation.

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