Investigation of biodiesel-diesel fuel blends on combustion characteristics in a light-duty diesel engine using OpenFOAM

Harun Mohamed Ismail, Hoon Kiat Ng*, Suyin Gan, Xinwei Cheng, Tommaso Lucchini

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


This paper reports the differences in combustion characteristics of fossil diesel and the methyl esters of coconut (CME), palm (PME), and soy (SME) over a range of engine conditions. The studies are conducted at a constant engine speed of 2000 rpm, and at engine load values of 0.5 kW (low), 1.5 kW (medium), and 2.5 kW (high). The investigated fuels are CME, PME, and SME at 0% diesel mixture (B100), 50% diesel mixture (B50), and fossil diesel (B0). Here, the OpenFOAM open-source computational fluid dynamics code is utilized to simulate the in-cylinder events. An in-house model for thermophysical and transport properties is employed, along with a mechanism comprising 113 species and 399 reactions with integrated NOx kinetics. Good levels of accuracy are achieved in the prediction of the ignition delay (ID) period, peak pressures, pressure traces, and heat-release rate profiles for all the test fuels. Biodiesel fuels are found to produce larger fuel droplet sizes, longer spray penetration, and lower vaporization rates compared to those of fossil diesel. In terms of the combustion behavior, the ID period decreases as the engine load is increased for neat CME, PME, and SME. However, the ID period increases as the load is raised for the B50 mixtures of CME, PME, and SME. All neat biodiesels and their blends except neat SME produce shorter ID periods than fossil diesel. Changing the fuel type from diesel to biodiesel alter the physical and chemical delay and, hence, the overall ID period. As a result, variations in the combustion behavior between the fuels are recorded.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)208-219
Number of pages12
JournalEnergy and Fuels
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 17 Jan 2013
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Copyright 2013 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


Dive into the research topics of 'Investigation of biodiesel-diesel fuel blends on combustion characteristics in a light-duty diesel engine using OpenFOAM'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this