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Technical Paper

Development of New Turbulence Models and Computational Methods for Automotive Aerodynamics and Heat Transfer

This paper is a review of turbulence models and computational methods that have been produced at Clemson University's Advanced Computational Research Laboratory. The goal of the turbulence model development has been to create physics-based models that are economically feasible and can be used in a competitive environment, where turnaround time is a critical factor. Given this goal, all of the work has been focused on Reynolds-Averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) simulations in the eddy-viscosity framework with the majority of the turbulence models having three transport equations in addition to mass, momentum, and energy. Several areas have been targeted for improvement in turbulence modeling for complex flows such as those found in motorsports aerodynamics: the effects of streamline curvature and rotation on the turbulence field, laminar-turbulent transition, and separated shear layer rollup and breakdown.
Technical Paper

A Review of Spark-Ignition Engine Air Charge Estimation Methods

Accurate in-cylinder air charge estimation is important for engine torque determination, controlling air-to-fuel ratio, and ensuring high after-treatment efficiency. Spark ignition (SI) engine technologies like variable valve timing (VVT) and exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) are applied to improve fuel economy and reduce pollutant emissions, but they increase the complexity of air charge estimation. Increased air-path complexity drives the need for cost effective solutions that produce high air mass prediction accuracy while minimizing sensor cost, computational effort, and calibration time. A large number of air charge estimation techniques have been developed using a range of sensors sets combined with empirical and/or physics-based models. This paper provides a technical review of research in this area, focused on SI engines.
Journal Article

Chassis Dynamometer as a Development Platform for Vehicle Hardware In-the-Loop “VHiL”

This manuscript provides a review of different types and categorization of the chassis dynamometer systems. The review classifies the chassis dynamometers based on the configuration, type of rollers and the application type. Additionally the manuscript discusses several application examples of the chassis dynamometer including: performance and endurance mileage accumulation tests, fuel efficiency and exhaust emissions, noise, vibration and harshness testing (NVH). Different types of the vehicle attachment system in the dynamometer cell and its influences on the driving force characteristics and the vehicle acoustic signature is also discussed. The text also highlights the impact of the use of the chassis dynamometer as a development platform and its impact on the development process. Examples of using chassis dynamometer as a development platform using Vehicle Hardware In-the-Loop (VHiL) approach including drivability assessment and transmission calibrations are presented.
Technical Paper

Prediction of Human Actions in Assembly Process by a Spatial-Temporal End-to-End Learning Model

It’s important to predict human actions in the industry assembly process. Foreseeing future actions before they happened is an essential part for flexible human-robot collaboration and crucial to safety issues. Vision-based human action prediction from videos provides intuitive and adequate knowledge for many complex applications. This problem can be interpreted as deducing the next action of people from a short video clip. The history information needs to be considered to learn these relations among time steps for predicting the future steps. However, it is difficult to extract the history information and use it to infer the future situation with traditional methods. In this scenario, a model is needed to handle the spatial and temporal details stored in the past human motions and construct the future action based on limited accessible human demonstrations.
Technical Paper

A Systems Approach in Developing an Ultralightweight Outside Mounted Rearview Mirror Using Discontinuous Fiber Reinforced Thermoplastics

Fuel efficiency improvement in automobiles has been a topic of great interest over the past few years, especially with the introduction of the new CAFE 2025 standards. Although there are multiple ways of improving the fuel efficiency of an automobile, lightweighting is one of the most common approaches taken by many automotive manufacturers. Lightweighting is even more significant in electric vehicles as it directly affects the range of the vehicle. Amidst this context of lightweighting, the use of composite materials as alternatives to metals has been proven in the past to help achieve substantial weight reduction. The focus of using composites for weight reduction has however been typically limited to major structural components, such as BiW and closures, due to high material costs. Secondary structural components which contribute approximately 30% of the vehicle weight are usually neglected by these weight reduction studies.