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ICEF > Webinar Series > ICED Webinar Series: The Future of the Internal Combustion Engine

ICED Webinar Series: The Future of the Internal Combustion Engine

Significant reductions in net carbon engine emissions are possible through the combination of improved fuel economy and the use of sustainable fuels. Gasoline direct injection fuel systems provide the means for improved combustion efficiency, but a key technology is the use of multiple injection events to achieve better mixture preparation and atomization. Understanding and controlling injector dynamics such as opening and closing time and transient needle lift is necessary when subjected to different fuel type, pressure, and temperature, as well as different injector build variation and age. A novel approach for injector control is to apply machine learning via artificial neural network fitting to learn injector dynamics over the life of the injector.

In this webinar, we will demonstrate how multiple injections can be used to tailor spray penetration and atomization dynamics for better fuel-air mixing, particularly for the renewable/sustainable fuels ethanol and methanol. We will explore how advanced optical diagnostics such as transparent nozzle visualization and high-speed extinction tomography lead to a more complete understanding of fuel delivery and droplet evaporation and provide valuable datasets for spray modeling. For control of the injection events, we will explain how measured differential voltage signals are used to create neural network training sets that encompass data under numerous operating conditions along with a wide range of injector hardware variations including parts toward the end of useful life. The predicted injector dynamics from the neural network are compared to measured data to evaluate the performance of the algorithms. Furthermore, multiple injector designs are evaluated to assess the robustness of the techniques across platforms.

Lyle Pickett

Lyle Pickett, PhD
Sandia national Laboratories

Dr. Lyle Pickett is a Distinguished Member of the Technical Staff at Sandia National Laboratories, where he has been employed since 2000. His research expertise is in optical diagnostics of spray combustion in chambers that provide engine-relevant conditions at high pressure and temperature. He founded and leads an international experimental and modeling collaboration to share spray combustion datasets online through the Engine Combustion Network, encouraging the improvement of computational codes used to design and improve engines for increased efficiency and reduced emissions.


Michael Lucido

Michael Lucido
Senior Staff Engineer
Advanced Vehicle Motion Controls, General Motors

Michael Lucido is a Senior Staff Engineer in Advanced Vehicle Motion Controls and has worked for General Motors for over 37 years in Control System Development. He has B.S. Electrical Engineering from Kettering University and M.S. Software Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University. Michael has over 39 Patents, has published several technical papers, and was awarded General Motors top technical honor, the Boss Kettering Award, that recognizes individuals who have developed truly outstanding innovations that have provided identifiable and substantial benefit to General Motors.

Michael is currently designing and developing advanced controls systems for various modes of propulsion; Internal Combustion Engines, Battery Electric, and Hydrogen Fuel Cell. Michael is currently involved in Department of Energy (DOE) project DE-FOA-0002450 Super Truck 3, award #DE-EE0009859. The objective of the Super Truck 3 project is to achieve a system-level greenhouse gas reduction of at least 75% by improving the efficiency of the vehicle(s) and the freight system while reducing total cost of operation and improving vehicle performance and reliability.


Ron Grover

Ronald Grover, PhD
General Motors

Ronald (Ron) is employed as a Staff Researcher at General Motors Research and Development, Propulsion Systems Research Lab. He has over 20 years of experience in CFD modeling of internal combustion engines. Ron received his undergraduate degrees from Clark Atlanta University and the Georgia Institute of Technology in Mathematics and Mechanical Engineering, respectively. Ron received his masters and doctoral degrees in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, MI. Ron’s areas of expertise are modeling fuel sprays, in-cylinder air-fuel mixing, gasoline engine combustion, and thermal management of electric vehicle components.

In 2014, Ron was recognized nationally with the Black Engineer of the Year Most Promising Scientist Award in Industry. He formally served as industry co-chair of the USDRIVE Advanced Combustion and Emissions Control (ACEC) Tech Team. Currently, Ron serves as a member of the ASME Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) Division Executive Committee as an Industry Advisor and committee member for the ASME Internal Combustion Engine Award. Ron has 6 US Patents, 9 internal GM trade secrets, and 50+ external publications & presentations.

The hydrogen internal combustion engine (H2ICE) is fast evolving in recent years as an emerging technology in several roadmaps across the transportation and industrial sectors. As it can be developed from traditional combustion engines and has good tolerance to the impurity in the hydrogen feed gas, H2ICE can serve as an important bridge technology in the transition towards a future characterized by a mix of electrification and sustainable net-zero carbon fuels. Compared to conventional liquid and gaseous fuels, hydrogen has a unique set of fuel properties, thereby presenting the need to gain a fundamental understanding of the implications of these properties and apply the learnings for tailored engine combustion system architecture selection and development. For the same reasons, the computational analysis of H2ICEs will require improved or novel models that will have to be disseminated and implemented into leading engine simulation software.

In this webinar, we will start with a discussion of hydrogen's unique combustion properties, followed by a review of the current technology landscape. We will then speak about the key aspects in engine combustion system development involving fuel injection, fuel-air mixture formation, flame development and propagation, and abnormal combustion events (pre-ignition and knock). Next, recent progress in the computational modeling of H2ICEs will be reviewed and future computational needs will be identified and discussed.

Dr. Riccardo Scarcelli

Riccardo Scarcelli
Argonne National Laboratory

Dr. Riccardo Scarcelli leads the Multi-Physics Engine Computations group of the Advanced Propulsion and Power Department at Argonne National Laboratory. His background is on computational fluid dynamics (CFD) applied to the multi-dimensional modeling of internal combustion engines (ICEs).

Dr. Scarcelli earned a Ph.D. on Engineering of Energy-Environment from the University of Rome "Tor Vergata" in 2008 and joined Argonne as a Postdoctoral Researcher at the end of the same year. He was promoted to become a Research Scientist in 2012. In the last 10+ years, Dr. Scarcelli has been leading several research projects funded by the U.S. Department of Energy with a focus on modeling high-efficiency ICEs, advanced ignition systems, and low-carbon fuels. Today, his research interests encompass a wide range of sectors, including internal combustion engines for propulsion and power applications, industrial decarbonization, hydrogen combustion and safety, advanced plasma technologies, etc.

Dr. Scarcelli has been conducting several professional activities and has been very active within the Society of Automotive Engineering (SAE) and the American Society of Mechanical Engineering (ASME) networks. He currently serves as the Chair of the SAE Engine Combustion Committee, and as the Chair of the ASME ICE Division Honors and Awards. In 2021, Dr. Scarcelli was elected as a SAE Fellow and as a Distinguished Associate of the Internal Combustion Engine Division (ICED) of ASM

Yu Zhang

Yu Zhang
Cummins Inc.

Yu Zhang is currently a Technical Advisor in Technical Strategy and Integration at Cummins’ Engine Business Unit. In this capacity, he utilizes advanced analytical and experimental approaches to drive sound decisions and develop technical contents that lead to highly efficient, environmentally friendly, and competitive propulsion system products in support of Cummins' Destination Zero strategy.

Prior to joining Cummins, Yu worked at Aramco's Research Center in Detroit for over 8 years, conducting fuels and engine combustion research, leading the heavy-duty gasoline compression ignition project, and managing the Propulsion Technology Development team. Previously, Yu also held positions at General Motors, FEV, and Navistar in engine combustion system technology development.

Yu serves on the editorial board for several journals including an Associate Editor position for ASME Journal of Energy Resources Technology. He also chairs multiple sessions at ASME and SAE events. Yu obtained his PhD in combustion research from Penn State University in 2010.

Kelly Senecal

Kelly Senecal
Convergent Science

Dr. Kelly Senecal is a co-founder and owner of Convergent Science and one of the original developers of CONVERGE, an industry-leading computational fluid dynamics software. He is a visiting professor at the University of Oxford, an adjunct professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a co-founder and director of the Computational Chemistry Consortium (C3). Dr. Senecal is a Fellow of the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). He is a member of the executive committee of the ASME Internal Combustion Engine Division, a member of the board of advisors for the Central States Section of the Combustion Institute, and the 2019 recipient of the ASME ICE Award.

Dr. Senecal has long been an advocate of creating cleaner propulsion systems, with a particular focus on using CFD and HPC to enable faster design. Starting with his TEDx talk in late 2016, he has promoted a diverse mix of transportation technologies through invited talks, articles, and social media. Dr. Senecal is co-author of the new book Racing Toward Zero: The Untold Story of Driving Green, winner of the 2022 Independent Press Award for Environment.

Yuanjiang Pei

Webinar Organizer
Yuanjiang Pei
Aramco Americas

Dr. Yuanjiang Pei leads the Computational Modeling Team at the Aramco Americas’ Detroit Research Center. His team focuses on innovating and developing advanced engine combustion concepts and low climate impact fuels using state-of-the-art simulation tools. He recently initiated an industry-focused consortium called, IMPACT (Initiative for Modeling Propulsion and Carbon-neutral Transportation, to develop accelerated virtual engine and fuel methods for sustainable transport technologies. He joined Aramco in late 2015 after previously working at Argonne National Laboratory and Delphi.

Pei is actively involved in the organization of several international conferences, serving both Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) and American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). He was presented with numerous prestigious awards, including the HPCwire Award four years in a row and 2019 ASME Chairman’s Distinguished Service Award. Pei received his PhD in Mechanical Engineering from The University of New South Wales.

Speakers:  André Casal Kulzer & Will Northrop

Presentation Slides:
Decarbonizing Engines using Green Ammonia and e-Fuels
Potential for eFuels as a Drop-in Replacement for ICE

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Speakers: Sibendu Som & Ron Grover

Presentation Slides:
Reimagining IC Engine Development Leveraging Next-Generation HPC & AI

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  • How electrification and combustion work together to improve efficiency and emissions
  • Both SI and CI engines will be discussed
  • Speakers: Terry Alger & Charlie Roberts

Presentation Slides:
Heavy Duty and Non-Road IC Engine Future
Creating a Sustainable Future for the IC Engine through Electrification

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  • Importance and challenges of decarbonizing the transportation sector
  • Untangling the myths of internal combustion
  • Speaker: Kelly Senecal

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Contact Laura Herrera with questions regarding the series