A study of plasma-assisted ignition in a small internal combustion engine

Joseph K. Lefkowitz, Yiguang Ju, Ryoji Tsuruoka, Yuji Ikeda

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

A plasma-assisted spark plug is tested in a single cylinder, 34 cubic centimeter, 4-stroke internal combustion engine of the type used in small scale unmanned aerial systems. The spark plug, developed by Imagineering, Inc. of Japan, couples 2.45 GHz microwave frequency energy from a commercial magnetron into the electrodes of a standard geometry non-resistor spark plug. Tests are run at two different engine speeds, with and without the addition of 750 mJ of microwave pulses, and the intake charge is varied over a wide range of equivalence ratios. The initial results show that with the microwave-assisted ignition the lean burn limit was extended by 20-30% according to the coefficient of variation of the indicated mean effective pressure (COV imep) staying within the stable operating limits. The results also demonstrate an improvement in the indicated mean effective pressure of 6-10% at strong operating conditions away from the lean limit. The minimum specific fuel consumption occurs at lean operating conditions of A/F = 17-20, where there can be significant limitations in the COV imep for the standard spark plug, yet the microwave-enhanced spark plug can achieve stable operation. It is thus demonstrated that using the microwave-assisted spark plug allows for a wider range of stable operating conditions, which encompasses the region of greatest fuel conversion efficiency not achievable with the standard spark plug.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication50th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting Including the New Horizons Forum and Aerospace Exposition
StatePublished - Jun 20 2012
Event50th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting Including the New Horizons Forum and Aerospace Exposition - Nashville, TN, United States
Duration: Jan 9 2012Jan 12 2012

Other

Other50th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting Including the New Horizons Forum and Aerospace Exposition
CountryUnited States
CityNashville, TN
Period1/9/121/12/12

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Aerospace Engineering

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  • Cite this

    Lefkowitz, J. K., Ju, Y., Tsuruoka, R., & Ikeda, Y. (2012). A study of plasma-assisted ignition in a small internal combustion engine. In 50th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting Including the New Horizons Forum and Aerospace Exposition [AIAA 2012-1133]