Engine Modelling Team (EMT)

About us

The Engine Modelling Team (EMT) was formed to support the automotive and other advanced industries in their transition from hardware testing to model-based design and development of propulsion systems and other fluid-dynamic applications.

The EMT have developed considerable expertise in the use of CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) and other modelling software, and cooperate with software houses in the development of models and tailored modelling frameworks to both improve and simplify CAE activities within industry and academia.

Since 2019, the EMT has been involved in urban Air Quality (AQ) projects, applying advanced 3D CFD approaches to model traffic related air pollution.

Our modelling activities are supported by access to a range of testing equipment, including two fully-instrumented engine test cells.

ICE cylinder computational mesh

Research impact

Noxious gas dispersion modelling

The EMT works in close collaboration with a range of industrial partners - eg Ford Motor Company, Siemens Software, Ricardo Software, Continental – as well as academic partners - Loughborough University, Bath University and Nottingham University.

We are currently part of APC6 DynAMO, a large £22m collaborative project led by Ford, which aims to deliver the next generation of modern GDI engines, simultaneously optimised for reduced fuel consumption and reduced PN emissions.

We also collaborate with the local authorities in Oxfordshire and with the wider AQ community, using very high resolution modelling to develop and evaluate systems and interventions to protect the public from exposure to harmful emissions.



Name Role Email
Dr Fabrizio Bonatesta Reader in Thermofluids fbonatesta@brookes.ac.uk
Edward Hopkins Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering/Research Fellow in Future of Transport e.hopkins@brookes.ac.uk
Professor Denise Morrey Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Research Lead dmorrey@brookes.ac.uk
Dr Davide Domenico Sciortino Senior Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering dsciortino@brookes.ac.uk
Sunny Verma Research Technical Officer sverma@brookes.ac.uk
Dr Changho Yang Senior Lecturer cyang@brookes.ac.uk


Active projects

Project title and description Investigator(s) Funder(s) Dates

DYNamic Analysis Modelling and Optimisation of GDI Engines (DYNAMO) – APC6

The research project is part of the larger APC6 proposal led by Ford Motor Company, which is concerned with emission reduction and optimisation of modern Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) engines, specifically Soot Characterisation and Modelling. The main aim of the project is to develop Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) models of relevant GDI engines to support the identification of improved control strategies for the simultaneous minimisation of CO2 and Particulate Matter (PM) emissions. This exercise will enable improvements to the current fundamental understanding of soot formation mechanisms in gasoline spark ignition combustion.
Dr Fabrizio Bonatesta Innovate UK From: August 2017
Until: July 2021

3D Modelling of Pollutant Dispersion and Exposure – TRANSITION Clean Air Network

Leveraging years of experience on emissions, and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) modelling, we have developed a new ultra-high definition 3D CFD urban model, capable of predicting the complex dynamics of pollutants dispersion from moving traffic, and of quantifying actual exposure for the public occupying the space. This project aims to increase the technical capabilities of the our model, perform its validation using purposely-collected field data, and carry out a case study on bus stop shelters, to assess the effective protection they may offer from short-term peak concentrations of air pollution.
Dr Fabrizio Bonatesta NERC From: May 2021
Until: October 2021

Ammonia Combustion Engine (ACE)

This project is funded through UK Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) to study the potentials of e-ammonia produced from renewable sources, as a carbon-free fuel for clean combustion-based propulsion. The main aim of this feasibility project is to expand the stable operation region of an ammonia engine, through addition of hydrogen produced by thermal cracking of ammonia onboard. The study includes experiments and simulations, and is carried out in collaboration with international partners in France and Norway.
Innovate UK From: August 2020
Until: July 2021

Our expertise

The EMT offer support and highly qualified services in the following areas:

  • CFD and 0D/1D modelling of internal combustion engines
  • Development of tailored software and methodologies to support the entire CFD modelling process (from meshing to automatised post-processing)
  • Robust methodologies for the calibration of semi-fundamental models
  • Spray modelling and spray pattern/targeting optimisation
  • Development of tailor-made surrogate fuel blend models
  • Combustion modelling including chemical kinetics and soot formation
  • Soot mechanisms and interactions in modern high injection pressure Gasoline Direct Injection engines
  • Advanced mesh morphing approaches for the simulation of gas and particle dispersion in large urban contexts
  • Conjugate heat transfer simulations
  • Engine testing, including emission analysis (gas analysers and FTIR) and engine-out Particulate Matter characterisation (DMS-500 by Cambustion)
  • Testing of fuels and impact on PM/PN emissions
  • Ammonia-hydrogen combustion

CFD simulation of direct fuel injection spray model

Engine test facilities

The Engine Lab offers a range of modern experimental facilities, including state-of-the-art internal combustion engines and development platforms, measurement equipment, control and data acquisition systems. To the benefit of our students, the same instrumentation is used to support both teaching activities and research or commercial projects.

EMT Test facilities
Engine dynamometer

Two fully equipped and customisable engine dynamometer test cells allow engine tests under controlled conditions. The currently installed down-sized turbocharged Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) engines incorporate the latest technologies adopted in today’s powertrain units. ECU communication, dynamometer control and data acquisition are carried out using advanced systems such as ATI Vision, CP-CADET and AVL-Xion.

Emission analysis equipment include industry-standard Particulate Matter (PM) measurement unit Cambustion® DMS-500, capable of real-time measurement of PM size profile. Gaseous emissions such as CO, HC, NOx and CO2 can be measured with Signal® emission analyser. An FTIR spectrometer allows detection of small quantities of a vast range of chemicals in the exhaust.

Emission analysis equipment
Image coming soon

Facilities (eg storage, metering and safety systems) to research the next generation of carbon-free fuels such as e-ammonia and hydrogen for future combustion propulsion systems, serving application where propulsion electrification is particularly challenging (marine applications, long haul freight, etc).