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A Method for Estimating Soot Load in a DPF Using an RF-based Sensor

The European emission standard is an EU directive which describes what emission limits car manufactures are required to meet. In order to meet these requirements car manufacturers use different techniques and components. In a modern diesel automobile a Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) is used to gather soot from the ex- hausts. As soot accumulates in the DPF, the back pressure increases and the capability to hold more soot decreases. Therefore the DPF continuously needs to get rid of the stored soot. The soot is removed through a process called regener- ation. In order to optimize when to perform regeneration, it is vital to know the amount of soot in the filter. A method for estimating the soot mass in a DPF using a radio frequency-based sensor has been developed. The sensor that has been studied is the Accusolve soot sensor from General Electric. A parameter study has been performed to evaluate the parameters that affects the sensor’s output. Parameters that have been stud- ied include positioning of the sensor, temperature in the DPF, flow rate through the DPF and distribution of soot in the DPF. Different models for estimation of soot mass in the DPF has been developed and analyzed. An uncertainty caused by removing the coaxial cable connectors when weighing the DPF has been identified and methods for minimizing this uncertainty has been presented. Results show that the sensor output is sensitive to temperature, soot distribution and position, and also show some sensitivity to the flow rate. An ARX model, with only one state, is proposed to estimate the soot mass in the DPF, since it gives the best prediction of soot mass and showed good resistance to bias errors and noise in all the input signals.

Victor Ingeström and John Hansson


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