Experimental and Computational Study of the Flow around a Stationary and Rotating Isolated Wheel and the Influence of a Moving Ground Plane
This study investigates the aerodynamic behavior of the flow around a rotating and stationary 60% scale isolated wheel, with and without the use of a moving ground plane. The aim of this research was to improve the understanding of the fundamental aerodynamic flow features around a wheel and to examine how rotation and moving ground planes modify these and affect the production of drag. A bespoke rotating wheel rig was designed and wind tunnel tests were performed over a range of pre to post critical Reynolds numbers. Force coefficients were obtained using balance measurements and flow field data were obtained using Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV). The unsteady flow field data generated was used to validate unsteady CFD predictions. These were performed using STAR-CCM+ and a k-ω SST Improved Delayed Detached Eddy Simulation (IDDES) turbulence model. This was seen to outperform other models by capturing an increased amount of finer detailed, high frequency vortical structures.