Effect of Test Section Configuration on Aerodynamic Drag Measurements
Aerodynamic measurements in automotive wind tunnels are degraded by test section interference effects, which increase with increasing vehicle blockage ratio. The current popularity of large vehicles (i.e. trucks and sport utility vehicles) makes this a significant issue. This paper describes the results of an experimental investigation carried out in support of the Ford/Sverdrup Driveability Test Facility (DTF), which includes an aero-acoustic wind tunnel (Wind Tunnel No. 8). The objective was to quantify the aerodynamic interference associated with two candidate test section configurations for Wind Tunnel No. 8-semi-open jet and slotted wall. The experiments were carried out at 1/11-scale in Sverdrup laboratories. Four automobile shapes (MIRA models) and six Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) shapes representing blockages from 7% to 25% were used to evaluate changes in measured aerodynamic coefficients for the two test section configurations.