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Journal Article

Validation of Aerodynamic Simulation and Wind Tunnel Test of the New Buick Excelle GT

2017-03-28
2017-01-1512
The validation of vehicle aerodynamic simulation results to wind tunnel test results and simulation accuracy improvement attract considerable attention of many automotive manufacturers. In order to improve the simulation accuracy, a simulation model of the ground effects simulation system of the aerodynamic wind tunnel of the Shanghai Automotive Wind Tunnel Center was built. The model includes the scoop, the distributed suction, the tangential blowing, the moving belt and the wheel belts. The simulated boundary layer profile and the pressure distribution agree well with test results. The baseline model and multiple design changes of the new Buick Excelle GT are simulated. The simulation results agree very well with test results.
Technical Paper

The Lattice-Boltzmann Method: An Alternative to LES for Complex Aerodynamic and Aeroacoustic Simulations in the Aerospace Industry

2015-09-15
2015-01-2575
An overview of the theory and applications of the Lattice-Boltzmann Method (LBM) is presented in this paper. LBM has gained a reputation over the past decade as a viable alternative to traditional Reynolds-averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) based methods for the solution of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) applications in the aerospace and automotive industries. The theoretical background of the method is presented and the key differentiators to traditional RANS methods are summarized. We then look at current and potential future applications of CFD in the aerospace industry and identify a number of areas where the limitations of RANS tools, in particular with regard to unsteady flows and the handling of complex geometries, prevent a deeper penetration of CFD into product development processes in the aerospace industry.
Journal Article

Aerodynamic Impact of Tractor-Trailer in Drafting Configuration

2014-09-30
2014-01-2436
On-highway tractor-trailer vehicles operate in a complex aerodynamic environment that includes influences of surrounding vehicles. Typical aerodynamic analyses and testing of single vehicles on test track, in wind tunnel or in computational fluid dynamics (CFD) do not account for these real world effects. However, it is possible with simulation and on-road testing to evaluate these aerodynamic interactions. CFD and physical testing of multiple vehicle interactions show that traffic interactions can impact the overall drag of leading and trailing vehicles. This paper will discuss results found in evaluating the effects of separation distances on tractor-trailer aerodynamics in on-road and CFD evaluations using a time-accurate Lattice Boltzmann Method based approach and the ramifications for improving real world prediction versus controlled single vehicle testing.
Technical Paper

A Computational Aeroacoustic Study of Windshield Wiper Influence on Passenger Vehicle Greenhouse Windnoise

2014-06-30
2014-01-2051
This paper presents an approach to numerically simulate greenhouse windnoise. The term “greenhouse windnoise” here describes the sound transferred to the interior through the glass panels of a series vehicle. Different panels, e.g. the windshield or sideglass, are contributing to the overall noise level. Attached parts as mirrors or wipers are affecting the flow around the vehicle and thus the pressure fluctuations which are acting as loads onto the panels. Especially the wiper influence and the effect of different wiper positions onto the windshield contribution is examined and set in context with the overall noise levels and other contributors. In addition, the effect of different flow yaw angles on the windnoise level in general and the wiper contributions in particular are demonstrated. As computational aeroacoustics requires accurate, highly resolved simulation of transient and compressible flow, a Lattice-Boltzmann approach is used.
Journal Article

Simulation of Underbody Contribution of Wind Noise in a Passenger Automobile

2013-05-13
2013-01-1932
Wind noise is a significant source of interior noise in automobiles at cruising conditions, potentially creating dissatisfaction with vehicle quality. While wind noise contributions at higher frequencies usually originate with transmission through greenhouse panels and sealing, the contribution coming from the underbody area often dominates the interior noise spectrum at lower frequencies. Continued pressure to reduce fuel consumption in new designs is causing more emphasis on aerodynamic performance, to reduce drag by careful management of underbody airflow at cruise. Simulation of this airflow by Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) tools allows early optimization of underbody shapes before expensive hardware prototypes are feasible. By combining unsteady CFD-predicted loads on the underbody panels with a structural acoustic model of the vehicle, underbody wind noise transmission could be considered in the early design phases.
Journal Article

A Computational Process for Early Stage Assessment of Automotive Buffeting and Wind Noise

2013-05-13
2013-01-1929
A computational process for early stage vehicle shape assessment for automotive front window buffeting and greenhouse wind noise is presented. It is a challenging problem in an experimental process as the vehicle geometry is not always finalized. For example, the buffeting behavior typically worsens during the vehicle development process as the vehicle gets tighter, leading to expensive late counter measures. We present a solution using previously validated CFD/CAA software based on the Lattice Boltzmann Method (LBM). A CAD model with realistic automotive geometry was chosen to simultaneously study the potential of different side mirror geometries to influence the front window buffeting and greenhouse wind noise phenomena. A glass mounted mirror and a door mounted mirror were used for this comparative study. Interior noise is investigated for the two phenomena studied. The unsteady flow is visualized and changes in the buffeting and wind noise behavior are explored.
Journal Article

A Computational Approach to Evaluate the Automotive Windscreen Wiper Placement Options Early in the Design Process

2013-05-13
2013-01-1933
For most car manufacturers, wind noise from the greenhouse region has become the dominant high frequency noise contributor at highway speeds. Addressing this wind noise issue using experimental procedures involves high cost prototypes, expensive wind tunnel sessions, and potentially late design changes. To reduce the associated costs as well as development times, there is strong motivation for the use of a reliable numerical prediction capability early in the vehicle design process. Previously, a computational approach that couples an unsteady computational fluid dynamics solver (based on a Lattice Boltzmann method) to a Statistical Energy Analysis (SEA) solver had been validated for predicting the noise contribution from the side mirrors. This paper presents the use of this computational approach to predict the vehicle interior noise from the windshield wipers, so that different wiper placement options can be evaluated early in the design process before the surface is frozen.
Technical Paper

The Aerodynamic Development of the Tesla Model S - Part 2: Wheel Design Optimization

2012-04-16
2012-01-0178
Aerodynamic efficiency plays an increasingly important role in the automotive industry, as the push for increased fuel economy becomes a larger factor in the engineering and design process. Longitudinal drag is used as the primary measure of aerodynamic performance, usually cited as the coefficient of drag (CD). This drag is created mostly by the body shape of the vehicle, but the wheel and tire system also contributes a significant portion. In addition to the longitudinal drag created by the body and wheels, rotational drag can add an appreciable amount of aerodynamic resistance to the vehicle as well. Reducing power consumption is an especially vital aspect in electric vehicle (EV) design. As the world's first luxury electric sedan, the Tesla Model S combines a premium driving experience with an electric drivetrain package that allows for unique solutions to many vehicle subsystems.
Technical Paper

The Aerodynamic Development of the Tesla Model S - Part 1: Overview

2012-04-16
2012-01-0177
The Tesla Motors Model S has been designed from a clean sheet of paper to prove that no compromises to a desirable aesthetic style and world class driving experience are necessary in order to be energy efficient. Aerodynamic optimization is a major contributor to the overall efficiency of an electric vehicle and the close integration of the Design and Engineering groups at Tesla Motors was specifically arranged to process design iterations quickly and enable the fully informed development of the exterior surfaces at a very rapid pace. Clear communication and a working appreciation of each other's priorities were vital to this collaboration and underpinning this was extensive use of the powerful analysis and visualization capabilities of CFD. CFD was used to identify and effectively communicate the nature of beneficial and detrimental design features and to find ways to enhance or ameliorate them accordingly.
Journal Article

Combined Analysis of Cooling Airflow and Aerodynamic Drag for a Class 8 Tractor Trailer Combination

2011-09-13
2011-01-2288
Long haul tractor design in the future will be challenged by freight efficiency standards and emission legislations. Along with any improvements in aerodynamics, this will also require additional cooling capacity to handle the increased heat rejection from next generation engines, waste heat recovery and exhaust gas recirculation systems. Fan engagement will also have to be minimized under highway conditions to maximize fuel economy. These seemingly contradictory requirements will require design optimization via analysis techniques capable of predicting both the aerodynamic drag and engine cooling airflow accurately. This study builds on previous work [1] using a Lattice Boltzmann based computational method on a Volvo VNL tractor trailer combination. Simulation results are compared to tests conducted at National Research Council (NRC) Canada's wind tunnel.
Journal Article

Direct Aeroacoustic Simulation of Flow Impingement Noise in an Exhaust Opening

2011-05-17
2011-01-1517
Unusual noises during vehicle acceleration often reflect poorly on customer perception of product quality and must be removed in the product development process. Flow simulation can be a valuable tool in identifying root causes of exhaust noises created due to tailpipe openings surrounded by fascia structure. This paper describes a case study where an unsteady Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulation of the combined flow and acoustic radiation from an exhaust opening through fascia components provided valuable insight into the cause of an annoying flow noise. Simulation results from a coupled thermal/acoustic analysis of detailed tailpipe opening geometry were first validated with off-axis microphone spectra under wide open throttle acceleration. After studying the visualizations of unsteady flow velocity and pressure from the CFD, a problem that had proved difficult to solve by traditional “cut and try” methods was corrected rapidly.
Journal Article

The Bandwidth of Transient Yaw Effects on Vehicle Aerodynamics

2011-04-12
2011-01-0160
A vehicle on the road encounters an unsteady flow due to turbulence in the natural wind, the unsteady wakes from other vehicles and as a result of traversing through the stationary wakes of road side obstacles. There is increasing concern about potential differences in aerodynamic behaviour measured in steady flow wind tunnel conditions and that which occurs for vehicles on the road. It is possible to introduce turbulence into the wind tunnel environment (e.g. by developing active turbulence generators) but on-road turbulence is wide ranging in terms of both its intensity and frequency and it would be beneficial to better understand what aspects of the turbulence are of greatest importance to the aerodynamic performance of vehicles. There has been significant recent work on the characterisation of turbulent airflow relevant to road vehicles. The simulation of this time-varying airflow is now becoming possible in wind tunnels and in CFD.
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