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Comparison of Gasoline Direct-Injection (GDI) and Port Fuel Injection (PFI) Vehicle Emissions: Emission Certification Standards, Cold-Start, Secondary Organic Aerosol Formation Potential, and Potential Climate Impacts

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journal contribution
posted on 25.04.2017, 00:00 by Georges Saliba, Rawad Saleh, Yunliang Zhao, Albert A. Presto, Andrew T. Lambe, Bruce Frodin, Satya Sardar, Hector Maldonado, Christine Maddox, Andrew A. May, Greg T. Drozd, Allen H. Goldstein, Lynn M. Russell, Fabian Hagen, Allen L. Robinson
Recent increases in the Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards have led to widespread adoption of vehicles equipped with gasoline direct-injection (GDI) engines. Changes in engine technologies can alter emissions. To quantify these effects, we measured gas- and particle-phase emissions from 82 light-duty gasoline vehicles recruited from the California in-use fleet tested on a chassis dynamometer using the cold-start unified cycle. The fleet included 15 GDI vehicles, including 8 GDIs certified to the most-stringent emissions standard, superultra-low-emission vehicles (SULEV). We quantified the effects of engine technology, emission certification standards, and cold-start on emissions. For vehicles certified to the same emissions standard, there is no statistical difference of regulated gas-phase pollutant emissions between PFIs and GDIs. However, GDIs had, on average, a factor of 2 higher particulate matter (PM) mass emissions than PFIs due to higher elemental carbon (EC) emissions. SULEV certified GDIs have a factor of 2 lower PM mass emissions than GDIs certified as ultralow-emission vehicles (3.0 ± 1.1 versus 6.3 ± 1.1 mg/mi), suggesting improvements in engine design and calibration. Comprehensive organic speciation revealed no statistically significant differences in the composition of the volatile organic compounds emissions between PFI and GDIs, including benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylenes (BTEX). Therefore, the secondary organic aerosol and ozone formation potential of the exhaust does not depend on engine technology. Cold-start contributes a larger fraction of the total unified cycle emissions for vehicles meeting more-stringent emission standards. Organic gas emissions were the most sensitive to cold-start compared to the other pollutants tested here. There were no statistically significant differences in the effects of cold-start on GDIs and PFIs. For our test fleet, the measured 14.5% decrease in CO2 emissions from GDIs was much greater than the potential climate forcing associated with higher black carbon emissions. Thus, switching from PFI to GDI vehicles will likely lead to a reduction in net global warming.