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Technical Paper

A Fluid-Structure Interaction Scheme for Prediction of Flow-Induced Low Frequency Booming Noise

The analysis of the acoustic behavior of flow fields has gained importance in recent years, especially in the automotive industry. The comfort of the driver is heavily influenced by the noise levels and characteristics, especially during long distance drives. Simulation tools can help to analyze the acoustic properties of a car at an early stage of the development process. This work focuses on the low-frequency sound effects, which can be a significant noise component under certain operating conditions. As a first step in the fluid-structure interaction workflow, the flow around a series-production vehicle is simulated, including passenger cabin and underhood flow. The complexity of this model poses extensive demands on the simulation software, concerning meshing, turbulence modeling and level of parallelism. We conducted a transient simulation of the compressible fluid flow, using a hybrid RANS/LES approach.
Journal Article

Simulation of Underbody Contribution of Wind Noise in a Passenger Automobile

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

Psychoacoustic Requirements for Warning Sounds of Quiet Cars

According to upcoming legislative regulations in certain countries, electric and hybrid-electric vehicles (EVs and HEVs) will have to be equipped with devices to compensate for the lack of engine noise needed to warn pedestrians against the vehicles. This leads to the question of appropriate sound design which has to meet specific psychoacoustic requirements. The present paper focuses on auditory features of warning sounds to enhance pedestrians' safety with a major focus on the detectability of the exterior noise of the vehicle in an ambient noise. For the evaluation of detectability, the psychoacoustic model developed by Kerber and Fastl will be introduced allowing for the prediction of masked thresholds of the approaching vehicle. The instrumental assessment yields estimates of the distance of an approaching vehicle at the point it becomes audible to the pedestrians.
Technical Paper

A CFD/SEA Approach for Prediction of Vehicle Interior Noise due to Wind Noise

For most car manufacturers, aerodynamic noise is becoming the dominant high frequency noise source (> 500 Hz) at highway speeds. Design optimization and early detection of issues related to aeroacoustics remain mainly an experimental art implying 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 development of a reliable numerical prediction capability. The goal of this paper is to present a computational approach developed to predict the greenhouse windnoise contribution to the interior noise heard by the vehicle passengers. This method is based on coupling an unsteady Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) solver for the windnoise excitation to a Statistical Energy Analysis (SEA) solver for the structural acoustic behavior.
Technical Paper

Analysis of Underbody Windnoise Sources on a Production Vehicle using a Lattice Boltzmann Scheme

A computational analysis of underbody windnoise sources on a production automobile at 180 km/h free stream air speed and 0° yaw is presented. Two different underbody geometry configurations were considered for this study. The numerical results have been obtained using the commercial software PowerFLOW. The simulation kernel of this software is based on the numerical scheme known as the Lattice-Boltzmann Method (LBM), combined with a two-equation RNG turbulence model. This scheme accurately captures time-dependent aerodynamic behavior of turbulent flows over complex detailed geometries, including the pressure fluctuations causing wind noise. Comparison of pressure fluctuations levels mapped on a fluid plane below the underbody shows very good correlation between experiment and simulation. Detailed flow analysis was done for both configurations to obtain insight into the transient nature of the flow field in the underbody region.
Technical Paper

A Modern Development Process to Bring Silence Into Interior Components

Comfort and well-being have always been connected with a flawless interior acoustic, free of any background noise or BSR, (buzz, squeak and rattle). BSR noises dominate the interior acoustic and represent one of the main sources for discomfort often causing considerable warranty costs. Traditionally BSR issues have been identified and rectified through extensive hardware testing, which by its nature intensifies toward the end of the car development process. In the following paper the integration of a virtual BSR validation technique in a modern development process by the use of appropriate CAE methods is presented. The goal is to shift, in compliance with the front loading concept, the development activities into the early phase. The approach is illustrated through the example of an instrument panel, from the early concept draft for single components to an assessment of the complete assembly.
Technical Paper

Psychoacoustic Modelling of Sound Attributes

This study inquired into perceived attributes of car interior noise and correlating psychoacoustic parameters. Auditory assessments of a total of 29 vehicles were performed during cruise and acceleration in two independent road tests. Four perceptual dimensions were found to determine the sound evaluations: comfort/loudness, sportiness, harshness, and timbre. A regression model was used to predict comfort/loudness from sound level, roughness, sharpness and speech intelligibility (SVI). Instrumental assessments of engine roughness demonstrated to predict harshness to a large extent. Sportiness was substantially correlated with the increase of engine sound level due to load change. The latter finding was further examined in a third experiment, using sound synthesis in a test vehicle.