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Technical Paper

A Computational Approach to Evaluate the Vehicle Interior Noise from Greenhouse Wind Noise Sources - Part II

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. This paper presents a computational approach that can be used to predict the vehicle interior noise from the greenhouse wind noise sources, during the early stages of the vehicle developmental process so that design changes can be made to improve the wind noise performance of the vehicle.
Journal Article

Evaluation and Optimization of Aerodynamic and Aero-Acoustic Performance of a Heavy Truck using Digital Simulation

The engineering process in the development of commercial vehicles is facing more and more stringent emission regulations while at the same time the market demands for better performance but with lower fuel consumption. The optimization of aerodynamic performance for reduced drag is a key element for achieving related performance targets. Closely related to aerodynamics are wind noise and cabin soiling and both of them are becoming more and more important as a quality criterion in many markets. This paper describes the aerodynamic and aero-acoustic performance evaluation of a Dongfeng heavy truck using digital simulation based on a LBM approach. It includes a study for improving drag within the design of a facelift of the truck. A soiling analysis is performed for each aerodynamic result by calculating the accumulation of particles emitted form the wheels on the cabin. One of the challenges in the development process of trucks is that different cabin types have to be designed.
Technical Paper

Hybrid Technique for Underbody Noise Transmission of Wind Noise

Wind noise has become an important indicator for passenger automobile quality. Several transmission paths can be related to different parts of the vehicle exterior. While the greenhouse (side glasses, windshield, seals & others) often dominates the interior noise level above 500 Hz, the contribution coming from the underbody area usually dominates the interior noise spectrum at lower frequencies. This paper describes a framework of numerical tools which is capable of determining realistic underbody turbulent and acoustic loads being generated for typical driving conditions, as well as performing the noise transmission through underbody panels and the propagation of sound to the drivers ear location.
Journal Article

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

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

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

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

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.
Journal Article

Numerical Simulations and Measurements of Mirror-Induced Wind Noise

The high cost and competitive nature of automotive product development necessitates the search for less expensive and faster methods of predicting vehicle performance. Continual improvements in High Performance Computing (HPC) and new computational schemes allow for the digital evaluation of vehicle comfort parameters including wind noise. Recently, the commercially available Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) code PowerFlow, was evaluated for its accuracy in predicting wind noise generated by an external automotive tow mirror. This was accomplished by running simulations of several mirror configurations, choosing the quietest mirror based on the predicted performance, prototyping it, and finally, confirming the prediction with noise measurements taken in an aeroacoustic wind tunnel. Two testing methods, beam-forming and direct noise measurements, were employed to correlate the physical data with itself before correlating with simulation.
Technical Paper

Tire and Car Contribution and Interaction to Low Frequency Interior Noise

A joint study was conducted between BMW and Goodyear with the objective of analysing the cause and identifying methods to reduce the structure-borne interior noise in a vehicle driving on rough road surfaces. A vibro-acoustic characterization of the car was performed by measuring the car vibro-acoustic transfer functions and by using a transfer path analysis technique to identify the main suspension parts affecting the interior noise at target frequencies. The vibration transmissibility characteristics of the tire were measured and also simulated by Finite Element in [1-200Hz] frequency range. The vibro-acoustic interaction between the tire and car sub-systems was examined. A Finite Element sensitivity analysis was used to define and build new prototype tires. A 3dB(A) interior noise improvement was obtained with these new tires at target frequencies.
Technical Paper

Structural Modelling of Car Panels Using Holographic Modal Analysis

In order to optimise the vibro-acoustic behaviour of panel-like structures in a more systematic way, accurate structural models are needed. However, at the frequencies of relevance to the vibro-acoustic problem, the mode shapes are very complex, requiring a high spatial resolution in the measurement procedure. The large number of required transducers and their mass loading effects limit the applicability of accelerometer testing. In recent years, optical measuring methods have been proposed. Direct electronic (ESPI) imaging, using strobed continuous laser illumination, or more recently, pulsed laser illumination, have lately created the possibility to bring the holographic testing approach to the level of industrial applicability for modal analysis procedures. The present paper discusses the various critical elements of a holographic ESPI modal testing system.
Journal Article

Assessment of Broadband Noise Generated by a Vehicle Sunroof at Different Flow Conditions using a Digital Wind Tunnel

For the automotive industry, the quality and level of the wind noise contribution has a growing importance and therefore should be addressed as early as possible in the development process. Each component of the vehicle is designed to meet its individual noise target to ensure the wind noise passenger comfort level inside the vehicle is met. Sunroof broadband noise is generated by the turbulent flow developed over the roof opening. A strong shear layer and vortices impacting on the trailing edge of the sunroof are typical mechanisms related to the noise production. Sunroof designs are tested to meet broadband noise targets. Experimentally testing designs and making changes to meet these design targets typically involves high cost prototypes, expensive wind tunnel sessions and potentially late design changes.
Technical Paper

Digital Aeroacoustics Design Method of Climate Systems for Improved Cabin Comfort

Over the past decades, interior noise from wind noise or engine noise have been significantly reduced by leveraging improvements of both the overall vehicle design and of sound package. Consequently, noise sources originating from HVAC systems (Heat Ventilation and Air Conditioning), fans or exhaust systems are becoming more relevant for perceived quality and passenger comfort. This study focuses on HVAC systems and discusses a Flow-Induced Noise Detection Contributions (FIND Contributions) numerical method enabling the identification of the flow-induced noise sources inside and around HVAC systems. This methodology is based on the post-processing of unsteady flow results obtained using Lattice Boltzmann based Method (LBM) Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulations combined with LBM-simulated Acoustic Transfer Functions (ATF) between the position of the sources inside the system and the passenger’s ears.
Technical Paper

Prediction of Eigenfrequencies and Eigenmodes of Seatbelt Retractors in the Vehicle Environment, Supporting an Acoustically Optimal Retractor Integration by CAE

From an acoustical point of view, the integration of seatbelt retractors in a vehicle is a real challenge that has to be met early in the vehicle development process. The buzz and rattle noise of seat belt retractors is a weak yet disturbing interior noise. Street irregularities excite the wheels and this excitation is transferred via the car body to the mounting location of the retractor. Ultimately, the inertia sensor of the locking mechanism is also excited. This excitation can be amplified by structural resonances and generate a characteristic impact noise. The objective of this paper is to describe a simulation method for an early development phase that predicts the noise-relevant low frequency local modes and consequently the contact of the retractor with the mounting panel of the car body via the finite element method.
Technical Paper

Evaluation and Improvement of Greenhouse Wind Noise of a SGMW SUV using Simulation Driven Design

At SAIC-GM-Wuling (SGMW) the greenhouse wind noise performance of their vehicles has gained a lot of attention in the development process. In order to evaluate and improve the noise quality of a newly developed SUV a digital simulation based process has been employed during the early stage of the design. CFD simulation was used for obtaining the flow induced exterior noise sources. Performance metrics for the quality were based on interior noise levels which were calculated from the exterior sources using a SEA approach for the noise transmission through the glass panels and propagation to the driver’s or passenger’s head space. Detailed analysis of the CFD results allowed to identify noise sources and related flow structures. Based on this analysis, design modifications were then applied and tested in a sequential iterative process. As a result an improvement of more than 2 dB in overall sound pressure level could be achieved.