The effects of transient rate-of-injection profiles on high-pressure fuel jets have been studied in an optically accessible internal combustion engine. High-speed optical imaging measurements were applied over a range of ambient conditions, fuel types, and injection parameters. The optical data demonstrate that during the early part of the injection, while the liquid core of the jet is disintegrating, penetration is functionally linked to the orifice exit velocity up until a downstream distance hypothesized to be the jet breakup length. The jets then transition to a mixing dominated penetration behavior further downstream. Therefore, for cases that exhibit transient rate-of-injection (ROI) profiles, quasi-steady correlations for penetration have poor agreement with the empirical data.
The lack of agreement between models using quasi-steady approximations and the high-speed experimental data, and the experimental evidence of liquid core physics impacting the transient jet penetration, motivated the development of a new 1-D model that integrates liquid core penetration physics and eliminates quasi-steady approximations. The new 1-D modeling methodology couples the transport equations for the evolution of the liquid core of the jet and the surrounding sheath of droplets resulting from breakup. The results of the model are validated against the aforementioned optical transient jet measurements. Finally, experimental results for two jet fuels and a diesel fuel are studied with the aid of the model. Differences in fuel properties cause the diesel fuel jet to transition from an incomplete spray to a complete spray later than the jet fuels during the transient injection process. Increasing ambient density causes the transition to happen earlier during the injection transient for all three fuels. The ignition delay and liftoff length appeared to be relatively unaffected by the late transition from incomplete to complete spray at low ambient density and low injection pressure. The results of the current study emphasize the importance of liquid core breakup on early jet penetration, and emphasize the need to consider the transition from incomplete to complete spray at low injection pressures and/or low ambient density with long transient ROIs to accurately model spray behavior.