Investigation of the Bed and Rear Flap Variation for a Low-Drag Pickup Truck using Design of Experiments 2010-01-0122
The drag reduction effect was investigated with regard to the bed and rear flap variation for a pickup truck through design of experiments process. The design factors were the bed length, bed height, rear flap length, and flap inset with three levels, and the noise factor was the yaw angle. The signal-to-noise ratio calculation was introduced to evaluate the low-drag performance under a crosswind. Analysis of variance indicated the significant interaction effect between the bed length and bed height. Since the bed flow of the short with low bed was attached to the tailgate, which increased the drag coefficient and lowered the S/N ratio. The rear flap add-on at the rear edge of a roof was effective to reduce the drag coefficient. However, the sensitivity of the flap length variation on the drag reduction was not significant. The flap inset had a negative effect on the drag reduction as it lowered the inset area pressure of the cabin back surface. Consequently, in order to reduce the drag coefficient of a pickup truck, the rear flap should be installed without any offset.