Date of Award

8-2016

Degree Name

Master of Science

Department

Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Claudia Fajardo

Second Advisor

Dr. Bade Shrestha

Third Advisor

Dr. Christopher Cho

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Campus Only

Restricted to Campus until

8-2017

Abstract

The second law of thermodynamics is a powerful tool for calculating the amount of energy that can be converted to work (i.e., the exergy or availability of a system), which cannot be predicted using the first law. The objectives of this research project are to quantify the availability during the compression, combustion and expansion processes of a spark-ignited engine fueled with methane; and to highlight differences in the thermo-mechanical availability of the ideal and spark-ignition (SI) engine cycles. A cooperative single-cylinder research engine was used to measure the data required for availability analysis at equivalence ratios ranging between 0.83 and 1.25. The thermo-mechanical availability, normalized by the energy content of the mixture, was found to increase as the equivalence ratio decreases. First and second-law of Thermodynamics efficiencies also increased for fuel-leaner mixtures, but remained within four percent of each other for methane in both the ideal and the SI engine cycles.

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