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Journal Article

The Honda R&D Americas Scale Model Wind Tunnel

This paper describes the new Honda R&D Americas Scale Model Wind Tunnel (SWT). To help address Honda's ongoing need to improve fuel economy, reduce the driving force of a vehicle, and decrease product development time, the wind tunnel was developed and implemented to achieve high accuracy aerodynamic predictions for product development and a significantly improved capability for vehicle aerodynamics research. The SWT can accommodate model scales up to 50%. The ¾-open jet test section has a top speed of 250 km/h, a 5-belt moving ground plane with a long center belt for proper wake simulation, a test section designed specifically for very low static pressure gradient, three separate dynamic pressure measurement systems for state-of-the-art blockage corrections, and an overhead traverse for specialized measurement activities. This paper describes the decision process that led to the SWT, key commissioning results, and performance validation results with models installed.
Technical Paper

The BMW AVZ Wind Tunnel Center

The new BMW Aerodynamisches Versuchszentrum (AVZ) wind tunnel center includes a full-scale wind tunnel, "The BMW Windkanal" and an aerodynamic laboratory "The BMW AEROLAB." The AVZ facility incorporates numerous new technology features that provide design engineers with new tools for aerodynamic optimization of vehicles. The AVZ features a single-belt rolling road in the AEROLAB and a five-belt rolling road in the Windkanal for underbody aerodynamic simulation. Each of these rolling road types has distinct advantages, and BMW will leverage the advantages of each system. The AEROLAB features two overhead traverses that can be configured to study vehicle drafting, and both static and dynamic passing maneuvers. To accurately simulate "on-road" aerodynamic forces, a novel collector/flow stabilizer was developed that produces a very flat axial static pressure distribution. The flat static pressure distribution represents a significant improvement relative to other open jet wind tunnels.
Journal Article

Scania’s New CD7 Climatic Wind Tunnel Facility for Heavy Trucks and Buses

Scania AB has opened the new CD7 climatic wind tunnel test facility, located at the Scania Technical Center in Södertälje, Sweden. This facility is designed for product development testing of heavy trucks and buses in a range of controllable environments. Having this unique test environment at the main development center enables Scania to test its vehicles in a controlled repeatable environment year round, improving lead times from design to production, producing higher quality and more reliable vehicles, and significantly improves the capability for large vehicle performance research. This state-of-the-art facility provides environmental conditions from -35°C to 50°C with humidity control from 5 to 95 percent. The 13 m2 nozzle wind tunnel can produce wind speeds up to 100 km/h. The dynamometer is rated at 800 kW for the rear axle and 150 kW for the front axle, which also has ±10° yaw capability.
Journal Article

Practical Implementation of the Two-Measurement Correction Method in Automotive Wind Tunnels

In recent years, there has been renewed attention focused on open jet correction methods, in particular on the two-measurement method of E. Mercker, K. Cooper, and co-workers. This method accounts for blockage and static pressure gradient effects in automotive wind tunnels and has been shown by both computations and experiments to appropriately adjust drag coefficients towards an on-road condition, thus allowing results from different wind tunnels to be compared on a more equitable basis. However, most wind tunnels have yet to adopt the method as standard practice due to difficulties in practical application. In particular, it is necessary to measure the aerodynamic forces on every vehicle configuration in two different static pressure gradients to capture that portion of the correction. Building on earlier proof-of-concept work, this paper demonstrates a practical method for implementing the two-measurement procedure and demonstrates how it can be used for production testing.
Journal Article

Lockheed Martin Low-Speed Wind Tunnel Acoustic Upgrade

The Lockheed Martin Low-Speed Wind Tunnel (LSWT) is a closed-return wind tunnel with two solid-wall test sections. This facility originally entered into service in 1967 for aerodynamic research of aircraft in low-speed and vertical/short take-off and landing (V/STOL) flight. Since this time, the client base has evolved to include a significant level of automotive aerodynamic testing, and the needs of the automotive clientele have progressed to include acoustic testing capability. The LSWT was therefore acoustically upgraded in 2016 to reduce background noise levels and to minimize acoustic reflections within the low-speed test section (LSTS). The acoustic upgrade involved detailed analysis, design, specification, and installation of acoustically treated wall surfaces and turning vanes in the circuit as well as low self-noise acoustic wall and ceiling treatment in the solid-wall LSTS.
Journal Article

General Motors’ New Reduced Scale Wind Tunnel Center

The General Motors Reduced Scale Wind Tunnel Facility, which came into operation in the fall of 2015, is a new state-of-the-art scale model aerodynamic test facility that expands GM’s test capabilities. The new facility also increases GM’s aerodynamic testing through-put and provides the resources needed to achieve the growing demand for higher fuel economy requirements for next generation of vehicles. The wind tunnel was designed for a nominal model scale of 40%. The nozzle and test section were sized to keep wind tunnel interference effects to a minimum. Flow quality and other wind tunnel performance parameters are on par with or better than the latest industry standards. A 5-belt system with a long center belt and boundary layer suction and blowing system are used to model underbody flow conditions. An overhead probe traverse system is installed in the test section along with a model positioning robot used to move the model in an out of the test section.
Technical Paper

A Correlation Study between the Full Scale Wind Tunnels of Chrysler, Ford, and General Motors

A correlation of aerodynamic wind tunnels was initiated between Chrysler, Ford and General Motors under the umbrella of the United States Council for Automotive Research (USCAR). The wind tunnels used in this correlation were the open jet tunnel at Chrysler's Aero Acoustic Wind Tunnel (AAWT), the open jet tunnel at the Jacobs Drivability Test Facility (DTF) that Ford uses, and the closed jet tunnel at General Motors Aerodynamics Laboratory (GMAL). Initially, existing non-competitive aerodynamic data was compared to determine the feasibility of facility correlation. Once feasibility was established, a series of standardized tests with six vehicles were conducted at the three wind tunnels. The size and body styles of the six vehicles were selected to cover the spectrum of production vehicles produced by the three companies. All vehicles were tested at EPA loading conditions. Despite the significant differences between the three facilities, the correlation results were very good.