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www.ricardo.

com
Ricardo plc 2009 RD.08/######.#
Automated Cam Profile Designer and
Optimizer
Ricardo Software European User Conference 2010
Farzin Montazersadgh
Ben Playfoot
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Project Objectives and Challenges
Objective
Automated optimization of valve event based on input lift and duration
Consider kinematic and dynamic indicators of control and durability
Reduce cam profile design cycle time
Maintain acceptable run times
Challenge
Significant number of potential input variables and levels
3 levels of 23 variables = 94x10
9
possible combinations!
Significant number of engineering criteria to meet
Kinematic and dynamic guidelines at multiple speeds
Manual approach relies on engineering expertise and is difficult to
automate
Experienced based modification to shape of lift, velocity, acceleration
and jerk curves
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Cam Profile Design Methods
Multi-Polynomial approach
Traditional
Defined by 6 opening & 6 closing
5
th
order polynomials
Direct control of mathematical
constraints
Limited flexibility
Spline approach
Relatively new
Lift, velocity, acceleration
manipulated by click-and-drag
Interactive tool
Greater flexibility
Multi-polynomial approach chosen
for optimization since user has direct
access to mathematical constraints
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Excel Macro Development
Cam profile optimization is problematic since there are millions of potential
designs
Even using a smart DOE (e.g. Latin Hypercube) thousands of runs are
necessary to understand the potential cam design options
Objectives for developing excel macro
Reduce processing time
Easily find extremes or sensible boundaries for the DOE
Unexpected benefits
Useful training tool to understand the sensitivity of the cam profile to each
parameter
Just scrolling a sliding bar to see the affect of each parameter
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Excel Macro Snap Shot
Unacceptable Acceptable Unacceptable
Screening checks for sensible profile
Input variables to check sensitivity
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Automated Kinematic and Dynamic Optimization
1) DOE of valve
profile coefficients
Screening of
infeasible designs
2) Coarse
optimization based
on kinematic results
3) Refined optimization
based on kinematic &
dynamic results
A variety of methods involving DOE and Optimization routines have been investigated
The best method uses the following approach
Step 1 DOE using the Excel macro that filters to identify hundreds of potential profiles
Step 2 Short Optimization to rank all feasible DOE profiles based on kinematic and
dynamic results
Step 3 Final optimization to refine top ten profiles based on kinematic and dynamic
results
Final results highly depend on initial starting points, therefore a DOE is needed to provide
multiple starting point for the optimization
Case studies showed about 5000 DOE profiles provide enough resolution to explore the
design space, this cuts the DOE runtime to about 1.5 hours
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DOE of potential profiles with
wide ranges for each
parameter
Acceptable
acceleration
profile?
Run kinematic
valvetrain model
Kinematic
parameters meet
guidelines?
Change parameters
within a certain range
Acceptable
acceleration
profile?
Run kinematic
valvetrain model
Kinematic
parameters meet
guidelines?
Change parameters
within a certain range
Acceptable
acceleration
profile?
Run dynamic
valvetrain model
Is LAI and
Limiting Speed
maximized?
10 optimized
profiles for the user
to choose from
Time constraint for each input
Final optimization loop
Yes
Yes
No
No
Yes No
No
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
No
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DYNAMIC
KINEMATIC
KINEMATIC
Cam Profile Design and Optimization Flowchart
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i-SIGHT Integrated Model Snap Shot
Smart DOE
(Latin Hypercube)
Short optimization
Run kinematic and dynamic
on all feasible DOE results
Final optimization
Run kinematic and dynamic on
top 10 from short optimization
Plotting final
results
Reading screened
profiles from DOE
Defining local
boundary conditions
Kinematic run with
VALKIN
Dynamic run with
VALDYN
Saving all
optimized profile
Optimization loop on
each potential profile
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Optimization Objectives and Constraints
Objective and constrains could change based on
user needs and targets
Common objectives/constraints:
Max contact stress
Oil film thickness (flat follower)
Min and max radius of curvature
Spring cover factor
Lift Area Integral (LAI)
Dynamic limiting speeds
Area under dynamic summary plots
Ricardo Guideline for
Cam Lifter Separation
Ricardo Guideline for
Seating Velocity
Cam Contact Stress
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Typical Dynamic Summary Plots
Graphs showing improvement in dynamic performance
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Typical Dynamic Plots at a Specific Engine Speed
Dynamic response of original and optimized valvetrains at 5500 rpm
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Case Study 1 Pushrod Valvetrain Example 1
Objective: Increase Lift Area Integral (LAI) and cam/follower dynamic limiting engine speed
Final results LAI Dynamic Limiting Engine Speed
Original (heavily optimized) 0.4937 6710 rpm
Optimized_1 0.5011 (1.5%) 6745 rpm
Manual optimization of this profile was carried out and estimated time to complete is 1-2
weeks
Cam optimization program designed and optimized the profile in about 35 hours, with about 8
hours engineer time
Case study indicates at least 80% reduction in engineers time and a marginally improved cam
profile
Valve acceleration (No Lash)
Cam/Follower Separation
Ricardo Guideline for
Seating Velocity
6710 rpm
6745 rpm
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Case Study 2 Pushrod Valvetrain Example 2
Objective: Increase LAI and cam/follower dynamic limiting speed
Final results LAI Dynamic Limiting Engine Speed
Original 0.5337 5350 rpm
Optimized_1 0.5649 (+6%) 5500 rpm
Optimized_2 0.5594 (+5%) 5550 rpm
Valve acceleration (No Lash)
Cam/Follower Separation
5350 rpm
Ricardo Guideline for
Cam/Tapper Separation
5500 rpm
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Case Study 4 Pushrod Valvetrain Example 3
Objective: Increase LAI and keep original
dynamic limiting speed
Final results LAI (above base circle)
Original 0.4333
Optimized_1 0.4519 (+5%)
Optimized_2 0.4407 (+2%)
Benchmark Target
for Spring Surge
Spring Surge
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Conclusions and Further Development
Conclusions
One case study indicates about 80% reduction in engineers time, further
experience on future projects will help to determine real improvement in
efficiency
Designing cam profile and its optimization using this method frees up
more time for the analyst to carry out studies such as parametric studies
on geometry, stiffness, damping, HLA parameters etc.
Small improvements were achieved on previously optimized profiles
Significant improvements were achieved on two non-optimized examples
A typical optimization run is about 35 hours and longer run times could be
used to investigate further optimization
Run time could be reduced even further by using VALDYN multiple run
function which uses multiple CPUs
Further developments
Design and optimize an asymmetric valve profile
Design and optimize valve spring

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