Design of an Actively Controlled Aerodynamic Wing to Increase High-Speed Vehicle Safety 2013-01-0802
This paper presents the design of airfoil and briefly introduces a real physical prototype for an actively controlled wing to improve high speed vehicle safety. Conventionally, active safety systems of road vehicles, including active steering and differential braking, mainly manipulate the tire/road forces to enhance the lateral stability of vehicles. However, this active safety technology is hindered by the saturation of tire/road forces at high lateral accelerations and on icy slippery roads. In contrast, the use of controlled aerodynamic forces has received little attention. In this paper, the actively controlled wing is proposed to manipulate the negative lift force (downforce) to enhance handling capabilities of vehicles at high speeds. Various wings are examined in terms of airfoil shapes, coefficient of drag and lift, resulting yaw/roll moments, effect of wing attack angle at different Reynolds numbers using numerical simulations with X-Foil, Gambit and Fluent software packages. A prototype of the proposed actively controlled wing is briefly introduced. The essential design parameters, functionality and features of the active wing are addressed. In a companion paper that will follow, the stability control analysis of the vehicle with the actively controlled wing will be offered.