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Technical Paper

A Two-Measurement Correction for the Effects of a Pressure Gradient on Automotive, Open-Jet, Wind Tunnel Measurements

This paper provides a method that corrects errors induced by the empty-tunnel pressure distribution in the aerodynamic forces and moments measured on an automobile in a wind tunnel. The errors are a result of wake distortion caused by the gradient in pressure over the wake. The method is applicable to open-jet and closed-wall wind tunnels. However, the primary focus is on the open tunnel because its short test-section length commonly results in this wake interference. The work is a continuation of a previous paper [4] that treated drag only at zero yaw angle. The current paper extends the correction to the remaining forces, moments and model surface pressures at all yaw angles. It is shown that the use of a second measurement in the wind tunnel, made with a perturbed pressure distribution, provides sufficient information for an accurate correction. The perturbation in pressure distribution can be achieved by extending flaps into the collector flow.
Technical Paper

Experimental Investigations and Computations of Unsteady Flow Past a Real Car Using a Robust Elliptic Relaxation Closure with a Universal Wall Treatment

In the present work we investigated experimentally and computationally the unsteady flow around a BMW car model including wheels*. This simulation yields mean flow and turbulence fields, enabling the study aerodynamic coefficients (drag and lift coefficients, three-dimensional/spatial wall-pressure distribution) as well as some unsteady flow phenomena in the car wake (analysis of the vortex shedding frequency). Comparisons with experimental findings are presented. The computational approach used is based on solving the complete transient Reynolds-Averaged Navier-Stokes (TRANS) equations. Special attention is devoted to turbulence modelling and the near-wall treatment of turbulence. The flow calculations were performed using a robust, eddy-viscosity-based ζ - ƒ turbulence model in the framework of the elliptic relaxation concept and in conjunction with the universal wall treatment, combining integration up to the wall and wall functions.
Technical Paper

Measurement of Reference Dynamic Pressure in Open-Jet Automotive Wind Tunnels

In automotive open-jet wind tunnels reference velocity is usually measured in terms of a static pressure difference between two different cross-sectional areas of the tunnel. Most commonly used are two sections within the nozzle (Method 1: ΔP-Nozzle). Sometimes, the reference velocity is deduced from the static pressure difference between settling chamber and plenum (Method 2: ΔP-Plenum). Investigations in three full-scale open-jet automotive wind tunnels have clearly shown that determination of reference dynamic pressure according to ΔP-Plenum is physically incorrect. Basically, all aerodynamic coefficients, including drag coefficient, obtained by this method are too low. For test objects like cars and vans it was found that the error ΔcD depends on the test object's drag blockage in an open-jet wind tunnel.
Technical Paper

Modelling the Use Phase of Passenger Cars in LCI

The results of previous Life Cycle Assessments indicate the ecological dominance of the vehicle's use phase compared to its production and recycling phase. Particularly the so-called weight-induced fuel saving coefficients point out the great spectrum (0.15 to 1.0 l/(100 kg · 100 km)) that affects the total result of the LCA significantly. The objective of this article, therefore, is to derive a physical based, i.e. scientific chargeable and practical approved, concept to determine the significant parameters of a vehicle's use phase for the Life Cycle Inventory. It turns out that - besides the aerodynamic and rolling resistance parameters and the efficiencies of the power train - the vehicle's weight, the rear axle's transmission ratio and the driven velocity profile have an important influence on a vehicle's fuel consumption.
Journal Article

Possible Influences on Fuel Consumption Calculations while using the Hydrogen-Balance Method

The Hydrogen-Balance equation makes it possible to calculate the fuel economy or fuel consumption of hydrogen powered vehicles simply by analyzing exhaust emissions. While the benefits of such a method are apparent, it is important to discuss possible influencing factors that may decrease Hydrogen-Balance accuracy. Measuring vehicle exhaust emissions is done with a CVS (Constant Volume Sampling) system. While the CVS system has proven itself both robust and precise over the years, utilizing it for hydrogen applications requires extra caution to retain measurement accuracy. Consideration should be given to all testing equipment, as well as the vehicle being tested. Certain environmental factors may also play a role not just in Hydrogen-Balance accuracy, but as also in other low emission testing accuracy.
Technical Paper

Robustness and Reliability Enhancement on Retractor Noise Testing, from Development Considerations to Round Robin

Sensing and acting elements to guarantee the locking functions of seat belt retractors can emit noise when the retractor is subjected to externally applied vibrations. For these elements to function correctly, stiffness, inertia and friction needs to be in tune, leading to a complex motion resistance behavior, which makes it delicate to test for vibration induced noise. Requirements for a noise test are simplicity, robustness, repeatability, and independence of laboratory and test equipment. This paper reports on joint development activities for an alternative test procedure, involving three test laboratories with different equipment. In vehicle observation on parcel shelf mounted retractors, commercially available test equipment, and recent results from multi-axial component tests [1], set the frame for this work. Robustness and reliability of test results is being analyzed by means of sensitivity studies on several test parameters.