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Technical Paper

The Effect of Free Stream Turbulence on A-pillar Airflow

Various studies have shown that the level of wind noise experienced inside cars on the road in unsteady conditions can be substantially different from that measured in wind tunnel tests conducted using a low turbulence facility. In this paper a simple geometric body representing the cabin of a passenger car has been used to investigate the effects of free stream turbulence, (FST), on the A-pillar vortex flowfield and the side glass pressure distribution. Beneath the A-pillar vortex, both mean and dynamic pressures are increased by FST. The unsteady pressure can be associated with wind noise and the flow visualization shows the peak unsteadiness is related to the separation of the secondary vortex.
Technical Paper

The Optimization of Roof Trailing Edge Geometry of a Simple Square-Back.

A large contribution to the aerodynamic drag of a vehicle is the loss of pressure in the wake region, especially on square-back configurations. Wake pressure recovery can be achieved by a variety of physical shape changes, but with vehicle shapes becoming ever more aerodynamically efficient research into active technologies for flow manipulation is becoming more prominent. The aim of the current paper is to generate an understanding of how an optimized roof trailing edge, in the form of a chamfer, can reduce wake size, increase base pressures and reduce drag. A comprehensive study using PIV (Particle Image Velocimetry), balance measurements and static pressure measurements was performed in order to investigate the flow and wake structure behind a simplified car model. Significant reductions in C d are demonstrated and directly related to the measured base and slant pressures.
Technical Paper

The Impact of Underbody Roughness on Rear Wake Structure of a Squareback Vehicle

In this paper the effects of a rough underbody on the rear wake structure of a simplified squareback model (the Windsor model) is investigated using balance measurements, base pressure measurements and two and three component planar PIV. The work forms part of a larger study to develop understanding of the mechanisms that influence overall base pressure and hence the resulting aerodynamic drag. In the work reported in this paper the impact of a rough underbody on the base pressure and wake flow structures is quantified at three different ground clearances. The underbody roughness has been created through the addition of five roughness strips to the underbody of the model and the effects on the wake at ground clearances of 10.3%, 17.3% and 24.2% of the model height are assessed. All work has been carried out in the Loughborough University Large Wind Tunnel with a ¼ scale model giving a blockage ratio of 4.4% for a smooth under-body or 4.5% with the maximum thickness roughness strips.
Technical Paper

Influence of Short Rear End Tapers on the Unsteady Base Pressure of a Simplified Ground Vehicle

Short tapered sections on the trailing edge of the roof, underside and sides of a vehicle are a common feature of the aerodynamic optimization process and are known to have a significant effect on the base pressure and thereby the vehicle drag. In this paper the effects of such high aspect ratio chamfers on the time-dependent base pressure are investigated. Short tapered surfaces, with a chord approximately equal to 4% of the overall model length, were applied to the trailing edges of a simplified passenger car model (the Windsor Body) and base pressure studied via an array of surface pressure tappings. Two sets of configurations were tested. In the first case, a chamfer was applied only to the top or bottom trailing edge. A combination of taper angles was also considered. In the second case, the chamfer was applied to the side edges of the model base, leaving the horizontal trailing edges squared.
Journal Article

An Investigation into the Wake Structure of Square Back Vehicles and the Effect of Structure Modification on Resultant Vehicle Forces

A large contribution to the aerodynamic drag of a vehicle (30%(1) or more depending on vehicle shape) arises from the low base pressure in the wake region, especially on square-back configurations. A degree of base pressure recovery can be achieved through careful shape optimization, but the flow structures and mechanisms within the wake that cause these base pressure changes are not well understood. A more complete understanding of these mechanisms may provide opportunities for further drag reductions from both passive shape changes and in the future through the use of active flow control technologies. In this work surprisingly large changes in drag and lift coefficients of a square-back style vehicle have been measured as a result of physically small passive modifications. Tests were performed at quarter scale using a simplified vehicle model (Windsor Model) and at full scale using an MPV. The full scale vehicle was tested with and without a flat floor.
Journal Article

Aerodynamic Drag Reduction on a Simple Car-Like Shape with Rear Upper Body Taper

Various techniques to reduce the aerodynamic drag of bluff bodies through the mechanism of base pressure recovery have been investigated. These include, for example, boat-tailing, base cavities and base bleed. In this study a simple body representing a car shape is modified to include tapering of the rear upper body on both roof and sides. The effects of taper angle and taper length on drag and lift characteristics are investigated. It is shown that a significant drag reduction can be obtained with moderate taper angles. An unexpected feature is a drag rise at a particular taper length. Pressure data obtained on the rear surfaces and some wake flow visualisation using PIV are presented.
Journal Article

Unsteady Aerodynamics of an Oscillating Fastback Model

This paper investigates the surface pressures found on the sides of a Davis model under steady state conditions and during yawed oscillations at a reduced frequency which would generally be assumed to give a quasi-static response. The surface pressures are used to investigate the flow field and integrated to infer aerodynamic loads. The results show hysteresis in the oscillating model's results, most strongly in the A-pillar flows. The changes to the oscillating model's flow field reduces the intensity of the surface pressures around the rear pillars, reduce the strength and extent of the A-pillar vortex and cause the surface pressures to couple with the oscillating motion. This work shows the flows around the front of a vehicle may be more important to a vehicle's unsteady aerodynamics than is generally accepted and also leads to the conclusions that the reduced frequency parameter may not fully describe the onset unsteadiness.
Journal Article

Influence of Short Rear End tapers on the Base Pressure of a Simplified Vehicle.

This paper looks into the effect on base pressure of applying a high aspect ratio chamfer to all edges of a simplified squareback model (the Windsor model). The effects are investigated using force and moment measurements along with surface pressure measurements on the slanted surface and vertical base. The work forms part of a larger study to develop understanding of the mechanisms that influence overall base pressure and hence the resulting aerodynamic drag. A short slant (approx. 4% of model length) was applied to the trailing edges of the simplified vehicle model, representing the small rear end optimisation typical of many real vehicle geometries. Two experiments were performed: the first applied a chamfer at varying angles to the top and bottom edges; the second test looked at the same chamfer angle applied to the sides of the model geometry while the top and bottom angle remained square.