Large-eddy simulations (LES) of hydrogen jets under highly under-expanded conditions are carried out. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis appears extremely useful to fully understand and optimize the hydrogen injection process, like in internal combustion engines. This work aims to analyze hydrogen high-pressure injection in the near-nozzle region, investigating the formation process and the structure of the Mach disks and the transition to turbulent jets, for nozzle pressure ratios (NPR) of 5.8 and 30. A real fluid model is utilized and compared against the simpler ideal gas model, for injections into an ambient pressure environment. Furthermore, hydrogen-air mixing evolution is investigated in the far-field region. Average quantities obtained from statistical analysis on LES simulations are compared with available data. The near nozzle region, except for the initial transient part, is better captured by accurate spatial discretization methods, while properly predicting far-field effects, like turbulence and acoustic effects, seems to be mostly related to time discretization schemes.
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