A Computational Investigation of Ground Simulation for a Saloon Car 2014-01-0615
Automotive aerodynamics measurements and simulations now routinely use a moving ground and rotating wheels (MVG&RW), which is more representative of on-road conditions than the fixed ground-fixed wheel (FG&FW) alternative. This can be understood as a combination of three elements: (a) moving ground (MVG), (b) rotating front wheels (RWF) and (c) rotating rear wheels (RWR). The interaction of these elements with the flow field has been explored to date by mainly experimental means.
This paper presents a mainly computational (CFD) investigation of the effect of RWF and RWR, in combination with MVG, on the flow field around a saloon vehicle. The influence of MVG&RW is presented both in terms of a combined change from a FG&FW baseline and the incremental effects seen by the addition of each element separately.
For this vehicle, noticeable decrease in both drag and rear lift is shown when adding MVG&RW, whereas front lift shows little change. The same trends are seen in both CFD and experimental data.
The addition of MVG alone increases both drag and front lift, whereas rear lift decreases significantly. The addition of RWF alone has little effect on the global results (aside from lift), whereas the addition of RWR alone decreases both drag and rear lift significantly. Combining the incremental changes produces values that align well to the MVG&RW case, with the exception of front lift.
This shows similar trends to previously published work, both the noticeable drag decrease due to the addition of MVG&RW, and the contributions of the individual components.