Browse Publications Technical Papers 2009-01-2220

Guidelines for Using Fast Multipole BEM to Calculate Automotive Exterior Acoustic Loads in SEA Models 2009-01-2220

Automotive interior noise at mid and high frequencies is typically dominated by the airborne noise from acoustic sources that are spatially distributed around a vehicle. Each source is typically spatially compact (for example, a tire contact patch) but the source radiates sound that then propagates across the entire exterior surface of the vehicle. To characterize a source it is therefore necessary to know both the sound pressure level in the vicinity of the source and also the way in which sound from the source diffracts around the vehicle. The former depends on the details of the source, the latter typically depends on the overall vehicle geometry. When creating Statistical Energy Analysis (SEA) models of interior noise, the diffraction of airborne loads around a vehicle is often measured experimentally. Since SEA deals with averaged quantities, it is typically only necessary to obtain an approximate estimate of the space and frequency averaged sound pressure level across various surface regions of the vehicle (rather than a very detailed narrowband prediction of the diffraction).
This paper provides a numerical investigation of the diffraction of typical acoustic sources around a vehicle using the Fast Multipole Boundary Element Method (FMM BEM). In particular, the paper investigates the sensitivity of the space and frequency averaged diffracted field to various modeling details (for example, geometric detail, mesh density/quality, surface impedance, frequency resolution etc.). The objective of the study is to investigate how much “detail” is needed in an FMM BEM model in order to get accurate predictions of the exterior acoustic loads for use in Statistical Energy Analysis (SEA) models. Significant reductions in computational expense can be obtained by matching the level of detail in the FMM BEM model to the level of detail required in the input results for an SEA model (and therefore avoiding “over computing” results that are subsequently frequency and space averaged).


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