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Combustion of gasoline in a direct injection controlled auto-ignition (CAI) single-cylinder research engine was studied. CAI operation was achieved with the use of the negative valve overlap (NVO) technique and internal exhaust gas re-circulation (EGR). Experiments were performed at single injection and split injection, where some amount of fuel was injected close to top dead centre (TDC) during NVO interval, and the second injection was applied with variable timing. Additionally, combustion at variable fuel-rail pressure was examined.
Investigation showed that at fuel injection into recompressed exhaust fuel reforming took place. This process was identified via an analysis of the exhaust-fuel mixture composition after NVO interval. It was found that at single fuel injection in NVO phase, its advance determined the heat release rate and auto-ignition timing, and had a strong influence on NOX emission. However, a delay of single injection to intake stroke resulted in deterioration of cycle-to-cycle variability. Application of split injection showed benefits of this strategy versus single injection. Examinations of different fuel mass split ratios and variable second injection timing resulted in further optimisation of mixture formation. At equal share of the fuel mass injected in the first injection during NVO and in the second injection at the beginning of compression, the lowest emission level and cyclic variability improvement were observed.