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Technical Paper

The Theoretical Development of Vehicle Engine Cooling Airflow Models Using Incompressible Flow Methods

A one-dimensional incompressible flow model covering the mechanisms involved in the airflow through an automotive radiator-shroud-fan system with no heat transfer was developed. An analytical expression to approximate the experimentally determined fan performance characteristics was used in conjunction with an analytical approach for this simplified cooling airflow model, and the solution is discussed with illustrations. A major result of this model is a closed form equation relating the transient velocity of the air to the vehicle speed, pressure rise characteristics and speed of the fan, as well as the dimensions and resistance of the radiator. This provides a basis for calculating cooling airflow rate under various conditions. The results of the incompressible flow analysis were further compared with the computational results obtained with a previously developed one-dimensional, transient, compressible flow model.
Technical Paper

The Dimensionless Correlation of Airflow for Vehicle Engine Cooling Systems

An analysis of vehicle engine cooling airflow by means of a one-dimensional, transient, compressible flow model was carried out and revealed that similarity theory could be applied to investigate the variation of the airflow with ambient and operating conditions. It was recognized that for a given vehicle engine cooling system, the cooling airflow behavior could be explained using several dimensionless parameters that involve the vehicle speed, fan speed, heat transfer rate through the radiator, ambient temperature and pressure, and the system characteristic dimension. Using the flow resistance and fan characteristics measured from a prototype cooling system and the computer simulation for the one-dimensional compressible flow model, a quantitative correlation of non-dimensional mass flow rate to three dimensionless parameters for a prototype heavy-duty truck was established. The results are presented in charts, tables, and formulas.