A review of hydrogen as a compression ignition engine fuel

Pavlos Dimitriou*, Taku Tsujimura

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

251 Scopus citations


Diesel fuelled engines emit higher levels of carbon dioxide and other harmful air pollutants (such as noxious gases and particulates) per litre of fuel than gasoline engines. This fact, combined with the recent diesel emission scandal and the rumours of more widespread cheating by automotive manufacturers have initiated a long discussion about the future and sustainability of diesel engines. Improving the compression ignition engine is a direct way of going green. Reducing the harmful emissions can be achieved by future developments in the engine technology but also the implementation of alternative fuels. Hydrogen is a renewable, high-efficient and clean fuel that can potentially save the future of diesel-type engines. The evolution of high-efficiency renewable hydrogen production methods is the most important path for the start of a new hydrogen era for the compression ignition engine that can improve its sustainability and maximum efficiency. This paper provides a detailed overview of hydrogen as a fuel for compression ignition engines. A comprehensive review of the past and recent research activities on the topic is documented. The review focuses on the in-cylinder combustion of hydrogen either as a primary fuel or in dual fuel operation. The effects of injection strategies, compression ratio and exhaust gas recirculation on the combustion and emission characteristics of the hydrogen fuelled engine are fully analysed. The main limitations, challenges and perspectives are presented.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24470-24486
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Hydrogen Energy
Issue number38
StatePublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Compression ignition engines
  • Dual-fuel engines
  • Hydrogen
  • Hydrogen-diesel


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