Computational Analysis and Optimization of Torsional Stiffness of a Formula-SAE Chassis 2014-01-0355
One of the key aspects of designing a race car chassis is Torsion Stiffness (Roll stiffness). Designers strive to develop a chassis design with a high value of roll stiffness to counter the forces applied by the suspension during cornering while keeping the weight as low as possible. CAD and static analysis techniques are instrumental for virtual testing and validation in the initial stages of a project prior to experimental testing. This paper intends to encapsulate elementary analysis skills and their application in designing and developing tubular frame structures for amateur racing vehicles and simultaneously focusing on reducing the time for the design and development process.
The objective of this paper is to calculate, analyze and optimize the torsion stiffness of a Formula SAE/ Formula Student chassis using an analysis model developed and optimized for quicker design iterations and to compare different design proposals based on certain key parameters in the nascent stage of project development.
This paper extensively uses Finite Element Model (FEM) techniques to execute static structural analysis and modal analysis, and suggests various approaches that can be adopted post analysis to help in deriving alterations in space frame geometry directed towards augmenting torsional stiffness value for a particular load case and thus, optimize one's design.