Inderscience Publishers

Combustion, performance and emission analysis of diesel engine fuelled with methyl esters of Pongamia oil

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The methyl esters of vegetable oils, known as biodiesel are increasingly becoming popular because of their low environmental impact and potential as a green alternative fuel for diesel engine, and that they would not require significant modification of existing engine hardware. Methyl ester of Pongamia oil (PME) is derived through transesterification process. Experimental investigations have been carried out to examine properties, performance and emissions of different blends (B00, B20, B40, B60, B80 and B100) of PME comparison to diesel. A computer assisted single cylinder constant speed water cooled four stroke direct diesel engine (5 HP), which is commonly used in the agricultural sector for driving the pumps and small electrical generators is selected for the experimental investigation. The performance, emissions and combustion characteristics are analysed. The combustion parameters considered for this analysis are cylinder pressure and rate of heat release. The brake thermal efficiency is slightly reduced and hydrocarbon, carbon monoxide and smoke emissions in the exhaust are reduced when fuelled with methyl esters compared to diesel. But the NOx emissions are high when fuelled with methyl esters compared to diesel. [Received: December 11, 2009; Accepted: March 21, 2010]

Keywords: biodiesel, Pongamia oil, transesterification, methyl esters, diesel engines, combustion, performance evaluation, emission analysis, alternative fuel, agriculture, cylinder pressure, heat release rate, brake thermal efficiency, hydrocarbon emissions, carbon monoxide emissions, smoke emissions, exhaust emissions, nitrogen oxides, NOx

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