Duke, D., Finney, C., Kastengren, A., Matusik, K. et al., "High-Resolution X-Ray and Neutron Computed Tomography of an Engine Combustion Network Spray G Gasoline Injector," SAE Int. J. Fuels Lubr. 10(2):2017, doi:10.4271/2017-01-0824.
Given the importance of the fuel-injection process on the combustion and emissions performance of gasoline direct injected engines, there has been significant recent interest in understanding the fluid dynamics within the injector, particularly around the needle and through the nozzles. The pressure losses and transients that occur in the flow passages above the needle are also of interest. Simulations of these injectors typically use the nominal design geometry, which does not always match the production geometry. Computed tomography (CT) using x-ray and neutron sources can be used to obtain the real geometry from production injectors, but there are trade-offs in using these techniques. X-ray CT provides high resolution, but cannot penetrate through the thicker parts of the injector. Neutron CT has excellent penetrating power but lower resolution. We present results from a joint effort to characterize a gasoline direct injector representative of the Spray G injector as defined by the Engine Combustion Network. High-resolution (1.2 to 3 µm) x-ray CT measurements from the Advanced Photon Source at Argonne National Laboratory were combined with moderate-resolution (40 µm) neutron CT measurements from the High Flux Isotope Reactor at Oak Ridge National Laboratory to generate a complete internal geometry for the injector. This effort combined the strengths of both facilities’ capabilities, with extremely fine spatially resolved features in the nozzles and injector tips and fine resolution of internal features of the needle along the length of injector. Analysis of the resulting surface model of the internal fluid flow volumes of the injector reveals how the internal cross-sectional area and nozzle hole geometry differs slightly from the design dimensions. A simplified numerical simulation of the internal flow shows how deviations from the design geometry can alter the flow inside the sac and holes. The results of this study will provide computational modelers with very accurate solid and surface models for use in computational fluid dynamics studies and experimentalists with increased insight into the operating characteristics of their injectors.