151-0251-00L  Principles, Efficiency Optimization and Future Applications of IC Engines

SemesterAutumn Semester 2023
LecturersY. Wright, P. Soltic
Periodicityyearly recurring course
Language of instructionEnglish


151-0251-00 VPrinciples, Efficiency Optimization and Future Applications of IC Engines2 hrs
Tue10:15-12:00ML F 34 »
Y. Wright, P. Soltic
151-0251-00 UPrinciples, Efficiency Optimization and Future Applications of IC Engines1 hrs
Tue12:15-13:00ML F 34 »
Y. Wright, P. Soltic

Catalogue data

AbstractFuture Relevance of IC engines for transportation and Power-on-Demand. Characteristic performance parameters, operating maps and duty cycles. Thermodynamic cycles and energetic optimization. In-cylinder flows, convective and radiative heat transfer, combustion modes, boosting and simulation methods. Hybrid powertrains, decentralized power/heat cogeneration and use of renewable/e-fuels.
ObjectiveThe students get familiar with operating characteristics and efficiency maximization methods of IC engines for propulsion and decentralized electricity (and heat) generation. To this end, they learn about simulation methods and related experimental techniques for performance assessment in a combination of lectures and exercises.
ContentThis lecture aims at introducing the students to the working principles and efficiency optimization methods for Internal Combustion (IC) engines which are expected to continue to play a very important role in transportation (long-haul heavy duty, marine) and decentralized combined heat and power generation. Following an overview of different applications and powertrains, the course will focus on the following topics: First, a generic overview of the history of IC-Engines is given, and the basic dimensions and specific engine-relevant terminology are introduced. Next, operating maps for different duty cycles are discussed, highlighting the benefits of individual powertrain configurations for different usage scenarios. The high-pressure thermodynamic process and combustion-induced heat release are analyzed in detail and the design of the combustion processes is discussed in view of further optimization of the energy conversion efficiency. The concept of boosting, its challenges and potential are also presented. In addition, flow field characteristics, convective and radiative heat transfer and combustion modes (Otto, Diesel and “multi-mode” cycles) will be discussed along with possible simulation methods. The course consists of lectures combined with exercises. In addition, several invited guest talks will be held by representatives from Swiss industrial companies active in this field. Provided the pandemic measures allow, visits to different engine test facilities are further envisioned.
LiteratureJ. Heywood, Internal Combustion Engine Fundamentals, McGraw-Hill
Prerequisites / NoticeThis course provides background for the course 151-0254-00L “Environmental Aspects of Future Mobility” held in the Spring Semester, where the focus is on emission formation and minimization, exhaust gas after treatment systems and potentials of future synthetic/e-fuels in IC engines; all given in the broader context of a future mobility/transportation options (battery electric, hybrids, fuel cells etc.) and transformation pathways towards sustainability.
Subject-specific CompetenciesConcepts and Theoriesassessed
Techniques and Technologiesassessed
Method-specific CompetenciesAnalytical Competenciesassessed

Performance assessment

Performance assessment information (valid until the course unit is held again)
Performance assessment as a semester course
ECTS credits4 credits
ExaminersY. Wright, P. Soltic
Typesession examination
Language of examinationEnglish
RepetitionThe performance assessment is offered every session. Repetition possible without re-enrolling for the course unit.
Mode of examinationoral 30 minutes
Additional information on mode of examinationIn addition to the final oral examination, there is one compulsory continuous performance assessment with a pass/fail criteria. This consists of laboratory, computer and other exercises plus an excursion (in total six), distributed as evenly as possible over the semester). Four of these must be completed (pass/fail assessment) to pass the continuous performance assessment. If the compulsory continuous performance assessment is not passed, the exam cannot be taken.
This information can be updated until the beginning of the semester; information on the examination timetable is binding.

Learning materials

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Offered in

Energy Science and Technology MasterEnergy Flows and ProcessesWInformation
Mechanical Engineering MasterEnergy, Flows and ProcessesWInformation