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Engines – Getting the soot out

Melanie Debusk collects soot samples from a reactivity controlled compression ignition engine at Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s National Transportation Research Center.

August 3, 2016 – Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory are taking a closer look at previously uncharacterized, microscopic soot particles collected during lab experiments on light-duty, multi-cylinder advanced combustion engines. The ORNL-led team is widely known for advancing a combustion technology called reactivity controlled compression ignition that reduces nitrogen oxide emissions and particulate matter, or soot, and improves fuel efficiency in a low-temperature combustion environment. The team detected the particulate matter in this mode. “We’re further analyzing the soot to learn more about its potential impacts on light-duty engines and air quality,” said ORNL’s John Storey. The particulate matter discovery is part of a paper that summarizes ORNL’s long-term research using RCCI technology published in “Soot Dynamics in Internal Combustion Engines,” a special edition by the International Journal of Engine Research.