Numerical Analysis of Flow around an Isolated Rotating Wheel Using a Sliding Mesh Technique 2020-01-0675
Tire aerodynamics has long been viewed as a critical area in the ongoing research on vehicle drag reduction as it is a significant contributor to the overall automotive parasitic drag. Previous wind-tunnel experiments have revealed that the flow over a rotating wheel is a very complex phenomenon. This complexity arises from the tire-ground contact patch, various points of flow separation due to the wheel geometry, and the effects of wheel rotation. These aspects make the numerical simulation of this type of flow rather challenging. Existing literature shows a number of ways, like sliding mesh, by which to simulate the flow over an isolated wheel, but the problem of finding an accurate yet cost-effective solution still remains elusive. The current paper attempts to investigate the different methodologies to emulate the wheel motion. In addition, the paper will address the influence of mesh parameters and solver setting dependency of the solution. The wheel used in this study is similar to one of the tires used in the experiments of Fackrell and Harvey. CFD simulation veracity will be judged against the flow field and force coefficient data from their work.