A HYDROGEN FUELLED V-8 ENGINE FOR CITY-BUS APPLICATION
Hydrogen is seen as one of the important energy vectors of the next century. Hydrogen as a renewable energy source, provides the potential for a sustainable development particularly in the transportation sector. Hydrogen driven vehicles reduce both local as well as global emissions. The laboratory of transporttechnology (University of Gent) converted a GM/Crusader V-8 engine for hydrogen use. Once the engine is optimised, it will be built in a low-floor midsize hydrogen city bus for public demonstration. For a complete control of the combustion process and to increase the resistance to backfire (explosion of the air-fuel mixture in the inlet manifold), a sequential timed multipoint injection of hydrogen and an electronic management system is chosen. The results as a function of the engine parameters (ignition timing. injection timing and duration, injection pressure) we given. Special focus is given to topics related to the use of hydrogen as a fuel: ignition characteristics (importance of electrode distance), quality of the lubricating oil (crankcase gases with high contents of hydrogen), oxygen sensors (very lean operating conditions), noise reduction (configuration and length of inlet pipes). The advantages and disadvantages of a power regulation only by the air to fuel ratio (as for diesel engines) against a throttle regulation (normal gasoline or gas regulation) are examined. Finally the goals of the development of the engine are reached: power output of 90 kW, torque of 300 Nm, extremely low emission levels and backfire-safe operation.
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