Fuel injectors featuring differentiated hole-to-hole dimensions improve the fuel distribution in the cylinder ensuring a more efficient and cleaner combustion for GDI (Gasoline Direct Injection) engines. A proper diagnostic system able to detect the actual fuel flow rate exiting each hole of a GDI nozzle is requested in order to optimize the matching between the spray and the combustion chamber. Measuring the spray impact force of a single plume allows the detection of the momentum flux exiting the single hole and, under appropriate hypotheses, the evaluation of the corresponding mass flow rate time-profile. In this paper two methodologies for the hole-specific flow rate evaluation, both based on the spray momentum technique, were applied to two different GDI nozzles, one featuring equal hole dimensions and one with two larger holes. Three different energizing times at 100 bar of fuel pressure were tested in order to cover a wide range of operating conditions. The results were validated in terms of injected mass by means of a proper device able to collect and weigh the fuel injected by each single nozzle hole, and in terms of mass flow rate using a Zeuch-method flow meter as reference. Both the proposed methodologies showed an excellent accuracy in the fuel amount detection with percentage error lower than 5% for standard energizing times and lower than 10% for very short injections working in ballistic conditions. The mass flow rate time-profile proved a good accuracy in the detection of the start and end of injection and the static flow rate level.
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