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Technical Paper

A Computer Model Based Sensitivity Analysis of Parameters of an Automotive Air Conditioning System

The objective of this work is to perform a computer model based sensitivity analysis of parameters of an automotive air conditioning system to identify the critical parameters. Design of Experiment (DOE) and Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) techniques have been used to identify the critical parameters and their relative effects on the air conditioning system performance. The sensitivity analysis has been verified by running similar tests on an air conditioning system test stand (AC Test Stand).
Technical Paper


A comprehensive cycle analysis has been developed for four-stroke spark-ignited engines from which the indicated performance of a single cylinder engine was computed with a reasonable degree of accuracy. The step-wise cycle calculations were made using a digital computer. This analysis took into account mixture composition, dissociation, combustion chamber shape (including spark plug location), flame propagation, heat transfer, piston motion, engine speed, spark advance, manifold pressure and temperature, and exhaust pressure. A correlation between the calculated and experimental performance is reported for one engine at a particular operating point. The calculated pressure-time diagram was in good agreement with the experimental one in many respects. The calculated peak pressure was 10 per cent lower and the thermal efficiency 0.8 per cent higher than the measured values. Thus this calculational procedure represents a significant improvement over constant volume cycle approximations.
Technical Paper

A Design Tool for Producing 3D Solid Models from Sketches

A novel design tool that produces solid model geometry from computer-generated sketches was developed to dramatically increase the speed of component development. An understanding of component part break-up and section shape early in the design process can lead to earlier part design releases. The concept provides for a method to create 3-dimensional (3D) solid models from 2-dimensional (2D) digital image sketches. The traditional method of creating 3-dimensional surface models from sketches or images involves creation of typical sections and math surfaces by referencing the image only. There is no real use of the sketch within the math environment. An interior instrument panel and steering wheel is described as an example. The engineer begins with a 2-dimensional concept sketch or digital image. The sketch is scaled first by determining at least three known feature diameters.
Technical Paper

A Novel Design Concept of a Lateral Sliding Bucket Seat on Roller Mechanisms

A novel lateral sliding vehicle bucket seat was developed to address consumer needs for improved facile access to third row seats in minivans and sport utility vehicles. The concept provides for a second row bucket seat to slide laterally across a vehicle floor by roller mechanisms that roll across steel rails that transverse the vehicle floor. The system consists of two T-section type steel rails mounted parallel to each other at a distance equal to the seat riser support attachment features. The seat risers contain a roller mechanism that enables contact with the cylindrical portion of the steel rails. Each steel rail contains rectangular openings spaced appropriately to allow the seat latching mechanisms to engage securely. The seat riser supports at the rear include a releasable clamping mechanism hook that engages and disengages into the rectangular openings of the steel rails.
Technical Paper

A Semi-Empirical Model for Fast Residual Gas Fraction Estimation in Gasoline Engines

Accurate accounting for fresh charge (fuel and air) along with trapped RGF is essential for the subsequent thermodynamic analysis of combustion in gasoline engines as well as for on-line and real-time quantification as relevant to engine calibration and control. Cost and complexity of such techniques renders direct measurement of RGF impractical for running engines. In this paper, an empirically-based approach is proposed for on-line RGF, based on an existing semi-empirical model [1]. The model developed expands the range over which the semi-empirical model is valid and further improves its accuracy. The model was rigorously validated against a well correlated GT-POWER model as well as results from 1D gas exchange model [2]. Overall, using this model, RGF estimation error was within ∼1.5% for a wide range of engine operating conditions. The model will be implemented in Dyno development and calibration at Chrysler Group.
Technical Paper

A Subsystem Crash Test Methodology for Retention of Convenience Organizer Equipment System in Rear Impact

Any equipment system or vehicle component like the Convenience Organizer storage system needs to be retained within the cargo compartment without intruding into the passenger compartment for occupant safety during a high speed impact. This paper outlines a test method to evaluate the retention of such a system in a rear impact environment. The method utilizes a low speed barrier to simulate a high speed RMB (Rear Moving Barrier) impact. The content of the low speed RMB impact test setup was developed utilizing DYNA3D analytical simulation results from a full vehicle model subjected to high-speed RMB impact. The retention of the equipment developed through this test method was confirmed on a full scale rear impact test.
Technical Paper

Acoustical Advantages of a New Polypropylene Absorbing Material

Sound absorption is one way to control noise in automotive passenger compartments. Fibrous or porous materials absorb sound in a cavity by dissipating energy associated with a propagating sound wave. The objective of this study was to evaluate the acoustic performance of a cotton fiber absorbing material in comparison to a new polypropylene fibrous material, called ECOSORB ®. The acoustical evaluation was done using measurements of material properties along with sound pressure level from road testing of a fully-assembled vehicle. The new polypropylene fibrous material showed significant advantages over the cotton fiber materials in material properties testing and also in-vehicle measurements. In addition to the performance benefits, the polypropylene absorber provided weight savings over the cotton fiber material.
Technical Paper

Application of Principle Component Analysis to Low Speed Rear Impact - Design for Six Sigma Project at General Motors

This study involves an application of Principal Component Analysis (PCA) conducted in support of a Design for Six Sigma (DFSS) project. Primary focus of the project is to optimize seat parameters that influence Low Speed Rear Impact (LSRI) whiplash performance. During the DFSS study, the project team identified a need to rank order critical design factors statistically and establish their contribution to LSRI performance. It is also required to develop a transfer function for the LSRI rating in terms of test response parameters that can be used for optimization. This statistical approach resulted in a reliable transfer function that can applied across all seat designs and enabled us to separate vital few parameters from several many.
Technical Paper

Automotive Seat Suspension Model for Ride Quality Studies

A high fidelity seat suspension model, which can be used for ride quality predictions, is developed in this work. The coil-spring seat suspension model includes unique nonlinear forms for the stiffness and damping characteristics. This is the first paper to consider the nonlinear geometric effects of the suspension, derive the coil-spring suspension model from physical principles, and compare theoretical and experimental results. A simplified nonlinear form is achieved via an admissible function describing the vertical suspension deflection as a function of the lateral position. This simplified nonlinear form is compared to experimental data and demonstrated to have exceptional fidelity.
Technical Paper

CFD for Flow Rate and Air Re-Circulation at Vehicle Idle Conditions

CFD method for the calculation of flow rate and air re-circulation at vehicle idle conditions is described. A small velocity is added to the ambient airflow in order to improve the numerical stability. The flow rate passing through the heat exchangers is insensitive to the ambient velocity, since the flow rate is largely determined by the fan operation. The air re-circulation, however, is quite sensitive to the ambient air velocity. The ambient velocity of U=-1m/s was found to be the more critical case, and is recommended for the air re-circulation analysis. The CFD analysis can also lead to design modifications improving the air re-circulation.
Technical Paper

CFRM Concept at Vehicle Idle Conditions

The concept of condenser, fan, and radiator power train cooling module (CFRM) was further evaluated via three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics (CFD) studies in the present paper for vehicle at idle conditions. The analysis shows that the CFRM configuration was more prone to the problem of front-end air re-circulation as compared with the conventional condenser, radiator, and fan power train cooling module (CRFM). The enhanced front-end air re-circulation leads to a higher air temperature passing through the condenser. The higher air temperature, left unimproved, could render the vehicle air conditioning (AC) unit ineffective. The analysis also shows that the front-end air re-circulation can be reduced with an added sealing between the CFRM package and the front of the vehicle, making the CFRM package acceptable at the vehicle idle conditions.
Technical Paper

CFRM Concept for Vehicle Thermal System

Condenser, fan, radiator power train cooling module (CFRM) proposed by Delphi Automobile Systems was evaluated in the context of vehicle thermal system analysis. The results from the CFRM configuration were compared with those from the conventional condenser, radiator, and fan power train cooling module (CRFM). The analysis shows that for a typical passenger vehicle, the underhood temperature for the CFRM configuration is more than 10°C lower than its CRFM counterpart when the fan is operating at the same speed of 2500 rpm. This is due mainly to the higher mass flow rate impelled by the fan in the CFRM configuration. At the equal mass flow condition, both the CFRM and the CRFM configurations give similar underhood temperatures; but the fan in the CFRM configuration uses 19% less power, due mainly to the reduction in the fan speed needed to impel the same amount of mass flow rate.
Technical Paper

Cabin Air Humidity Model and its Application

In addition to the thermal comfort of the vehicle occupants, their safety by ensuring adequate visibility is an objective of the automotive climate control system. An integrated dew point and glass temperature sensor is widely used among several other technologies to detect risk of fog formation on the cabin side (or inner) surface of the windshield. The erroneous information from a sensor such as the measurement lag can cause imperfect visibility due to the delayed response of the climate control system. Also the high value, low cost vehicles may not have this sensor due to its high cost. A differential equation based model of the cabin air humidity is proposed to calculate in real-time specific humidity of the passenger compartment air. The specific humidity is used along with the windshield surface temperature to determine relative humidity of air and therefore, the risk of fog formation on the interior surface of a windshield.
Technical Paper

Evaluation of Automatic Fire Suppression Systems in Full Scale Vehicle Fire Tests and Static Vehicle Fire Tests

A prototype fire suppression system was tested in one full-scale vehicle crash tests and three static vehicle fire tests. The prototype fire suppression system consisted of 2 Solid Propellant Gas Generators and two optical detectors. These components were installed on the hood of the test vehicle. A vehicle crash test and a series of static vehicle fire tests were performed to determine the effectiveness of this prototype fire suppression systems in extinguishing fires in the engine compartment of a crashed vehicle
Technical Paper

Evaluation of Cylinder Pressure Transducer Accuracy based upon Mounting Style, Heat Shields, and Watercooling

This investigation evaluated different pressure transducers in one cylinder to examine the combustion measurement differences between them simultaneously. There were a total of eleven transducers ranging in both diameter and type of transducer (piezo-electric, piezoresistive, and optical). Furthermore, the sensors differed in the methodology for minimizing signal distortion due to temperature. This methodology could take the form of various size mounting passages, heat shields, watercooling or heat transfer paths. To evaluate the sensors, different engine operating conditions were conducted, focusing at full load and low speeds. Other hardware configurations of the same engine family were used to exaggerate the combustion environment, specifically a tumble-motion plate and turbocharging.
Technical Paper

Experimental and Modeling Evaluations of a Vacuum-Insulated Catalytic Converter

Vehicle evaluations and model calculations were conducted on a vacuum-insulated catalytic converter (VICC). This converter uses vacuum and a eutectic PCM (phase-change material) to prolong the temperature cool-down time and hence, may keep the converter above catalyst light-off between starts. Tailpipe emissions from a 1992 Tier 0 5.2L van were evaluated after 3hr, 12hr, and 24hr soak periods. After a 12hr soak the HC emissions were reduced by about 55% over the baseline HC emissions; after a 24hr soak the device did not exhibit any benefit in light-off compared to a conventional converter. Cool-down characteristics of this VICC indicated that the catalyst mid-bed temperature was about 180°C after 24hrs. Model calculations of the temperature warm-up were conducted on a VICC converter. Different warm-up profiles within the converter were predicted depending on the initial temperature of the device.
Journal Article

Fast and Efficient Detection of Shading of the Objects

The human thermal comfort, which has been a subject of extensive research, is a principal objective of the automotive climate control system. Applying the results of research studies to the practical problems require quantitative information of the thermal environment in the passenger compartment of a vehicle. The exposure to solar radiation is known to alter the thermal environment in the passenger compartment. A photovoltaic-cell based sensor is commonly used in the automotive climate control system to measure the solar radiation exposure of the passenger compartment of a vehicle. The erroneous information from a sensor however can cause thermal discomfort to the occupants. The erroneous measurement can be due to physical or environmental parameters. Shading of a solar sensor due to the opaque vehicle body elements is one such environmental parameter that is known to give incorrect measurement.
Technical Paper

Flammability Testing of Automotive Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning Modules Made from Polymers Containing Flame Retardant Chemicals

Flammability tests were conducted on one control HVAC module and two experimental automotive HVAC modules containing flame retardant chemicals. The HVAC modules were exposed to a heptane pool fire. All three HVAC modules burned under these conditions. The mass loss rates of the control and experimental HVAC modules were similar. The flame retardant chemicals caused a 50% reduction in the heat produced, a 751 - 897% increase in the carbon monoxide produced, a 4,867 - 5,567% increase in the gaseous hydrocarbon produced, and a 3,875 - 4,725% increase in the smoke produced when the HVAC modules burned under these conditions. These quantitative results are consistent with visual observations made during these tests that the experimental HVAC modules produced substantially more smoke than the control HVAC module.
Technical Paper

Heat Transfer Enhancement through Impingement of Flows and its Application in Lock-up Clutches

An impinging-flow based methodology of enhancing the heat transfer in the grooves of a lockup clutch is proposed and studied. In order to evaluate its efficacy and reveal the mechanism, the three-dimensional flow within the groove was solved as a conjugate heat transfer problem in a rotating reference frame using the commercial CFD code FLUENT. The turbulence characteristics were predicted using k-ε model. The comparison of cooling effect was made between a simple baseline groove pattern and a typical flow-impingement based groove pattern of the same groove-to-total area ratio in terms of heat rejection ratio, maximum surface temperature, and heat transfer coefficient. It is found that more heat can be rejected with the impinging-flow based groove from the friction surface than with the baseline while the maximum surface temperature is lower in the former case.
Technical Paper

High Performance Vehicle Chassis Structure for NVH Reduction

The main objective of this paper was to determine if the vehicle performance can be maintained with a reduced mass cradle structure. Aluminum and magnesium cradles were compared with the baseline steel cradle. First, the steel chassis alone is analyzed with the refined finite element model and validated with experimental test data for the frequencies, normal modes, stiffnesses and the drive-point mobilities at various attachment mount/bushing locations. The superelement method in conjunction with the component mode synthesis (CMS) technique was used for each component of the vehicle such as Body-In-White, Instrument Panel, Steering Column Housing & Wheel, Seats, Cradles, CRFM, etc. After assemblage of all the superelements, analysis was carried out by changing the front and rear cradle gauges and the material properties. The drive-point mobility response was computed at various locations and the noise (sound pressure) level was calculated at the driver and passenger ears.