Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources


Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Committee Chair

Mridul Gautam.


With ultra-low exhaust emissions standards, heavy-duty diesel engines (HDDEs) are dependent upon a myriad of sensors to optimize power output and exhaust emissions. Apart from acquiring and processing sensor signals, engine control modules should also have capabilities to report and compensate for sensors that have failed. The global objective of this research was to develop strategies to enable HDDEs to maintain nominal in-use performance during periods of sensor failures. Specifically, the work explored the creation of a sensor validation scheme to detect, isolate, and accommodate sensor failures in HDDEs. The scheme not only offers onboard diagnostic (OBD) capabilities, but also control of engine performance in the event of sensor failures. The scheme, known as Sensor Failure Detection Isolation and Accommodation (SFDIA), depends on mathematical models for its functionality. Neural approximators served as the modeling tool featuring online adaptive capabilities. The significance of the SFDIA is that it can enhance an engine management system (EMS) capability to control performance under any operating conditions when sensors fail. The SFDIA scheme updates models during the lifetime of an engine under real world, in-use conditions. The central hypothesis for the work was that the SFDIA scheme would allow continuous normal operation of HDDEs under conditions of sensor failures. The SFDIA was tested using the boost pressure, coolant temperature, and fuel pressure sensors to evaluate its performance. The test engine was a 2004 MackRTM MP7-355E (11 L, 355 hp). Experimental work was conducted at the Engine and Emissions Research Laboratory (EERL) at West Virginia University (WVU). Failure modes modeled were abrupt, long-term drift and intermittent failures. During the accommodation phase, the SFDIA restored engine power up to 0.64% to nominal. In addition, oxides of nitrogen (NOx) emissions were maintained at up to 1.41% to nominal.