The Use of Performance-Simulation Maps to Improve Lap Times through Wind Tunnel Testing 2004-01-3523
During the wind-tunnel development of racing vehicles, modifications are made to the vehicles in an effort to minimize lap times. The optimal configuration is usually a function of the chassis, powertrain and track; so several different aerodynamic configurations are required to maximize performance throughout a season.
The results of a wind tunnel test are typically drag and lift measurements but the desired information is the change in lap time. This paper proposes a method to relate wind tunnel measurements to on-track results using a simple performance simulation. Though relatively straightforward, this technique has been observed to improve the efficiency and outcome of several wind tunnel tests.