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Cosmin Dumitrescu, Associate Professor
Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering


Future transportation and power generation solutions

Current and future transportation and power generation solutions require accurate “well-to-wheel” analysis of their efficiency and effect on environment. My research group uses advanced experimental diagnostics and numerical simulations to investigate the development of highly efficient and low-emissions energy systems such as natural gas. These systems will help the U.S. to protect its valuable natural resource in a sustainable manner and reduce environmental effects. In addition, it provides unbiased guidance to stakeholders on the best utilization of natural gas.

Research interests:

  • Highly efficient combustion systems for power generation and propulsion using natural gas, dual fuels, and various blends of natural gas with biomass, coal derivatives and other alternative fuels
  • Fundamental understanding of the composition and property effects of natural gas and other shale-gas-derived fuels, and their blends with other renewable and/or unconventional fuels on conventional and advanced combustion strategies by formulating and studying well-characterized fuels made from shale-gas stocks, commercial blending stocks, and pure compounds, using conventional combustion emissions and efficiency measurements, high-speed imaging of combustion processes, and laser diagnostics
  • Biomass and coal gasification using bubbling fluidized bed gasifiers
  • Visualization of internal combustion (IC) engines in-cylinder phenomena 
  • Advanced fuels and combustion strategies for modern spark ignition and compression ignitions IC engines
  • On-road vehicle efficiency and emissions measurements
  • On-board natural-gas-to-liquid-fuel reforming
  • Laser-based technologies for the surface and sub-surface species detection
  • Health and environmental effects of power generation technologies
Current research projects
  • Fast Simulation of Real Driving Emissions from Heavy-duty Diesel Vehicle Integrated with Advanced Aftertreatment System
Post 2025, further reduction in nitrogen oxides and carbon-dioxide emissions from heavy-duty (HD) diesel engines request the development of simulation tools capable of simulating the real driving emissions (RDE) from heavy-duty diesel vehicles integrated with advanced after-treatment (AT) system. This project will develop a high-fidelity simulation tool aimed at accurately predicting the fuel economy and exhaust emissions from HD diesel vehicle equipped with advanced AT system especially during cold- and hot-start process. 
  • “Center for Advancement of Science and Engineering for Localized Gas Utilization - Natural Gas Combustion Design & Optimization”, WV HEPC Higher Education Policy Commission
Investigation of natural gas liquid-rich gas flame behavior (i.e., speed, structure, stability). Validate and improve combustion models under complex conditions, representative of IC engines and gas turbines (e.g., turbulence reaction chemistry). 

Past research projects
  • “Gasifier Test Stand Support”, US Department of Energy (DOE) - National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL)
West Virginia University (WVU) and NETL / U.S DOE are investigating the use of cost-effective, sustainable, and efficient clean energy solutions. One such solution is the bubbling fluidized-bed gasifier, which showed promise for converting coal and biomass to value-added chemicals and fuels. The gasification of solid feedstocks produces synthesis gas (syngas), which consists mostly of hydrogen (H2) and carbon monoxide (CO). Syngas rich in H2 can be directly used as fuel for power and heating applications. The experimental data collected under well-controlled conditions will provide a better understanding of the parameters that control the process efficiency and gas output composition. For example, NETL’ Multiphase Flow Science Group will utilize the experimental data to model and understand the flow dynamics and their effect on the complex reaction chemistry of coal / biomass gasification inside the fluidized bed reactor. Moreover, the gasification products will be fed to an internal combustion engine to simulate energy production.

Gasifier test stand

The main components of the bubbling fluidized-bed gasifier setup at WVU: 1. Gasifier high-temperature controller (up to 1,200°C); 2. Twin-screw feeding system for continuous feeding of coal / biomass feedstock; 3. Feeding controller; 4. Three-zone high-temperature furnace allows the precise control of the temperature inside the gasifier; 5. 1.5-inch ID bubbling fluidizing-bed gasifier (inside the furnace); 6. Product separation system; 7. Water-to-steam heat exchanger produce the high-temperature saturated steam required for feedstock gasification

  • Confidential, Industry Partner and WVU Innovation Corporation
On-road heavy-duty vehicle activity (measurement and analysis)