Investigation of Aerodynamic Influence on Truck Platooning
This paper investigates the aerodynamic influence of multiple on-highway trucks in different platooning configurations. Complex pressure fields are generated on the highways due to interference of multiple vehicles. This pressure field causes an aerodynamic drag to be different than the aerodynamic drag of a vehicle in a no-traffic condition. In order to study the effect of platooning, three-dimensional modeling and numerical simulations were performed using STAR-CCM+® commercial Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) tool. The aerodynamic characteristics of vehicles were analyzed in five different platooning configurations with two and three vehicles in single and multiple lanes. A significant Yaw Averaged Aerodynamic Drag (YAD) reduction was observed in both leading and trailing vehicles. YAD was based on the average result of three different yaw angles at 0°, −6° and 6°. In single-lane traffic, YAD reduction was up to 8% and 38% in leading and trailing vehicles, respectively.