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Quantification of Cooling Fan Airflow Installation Effects Compared to Plenum-to-Plenum Fan Performance

[+] Author Affiliations
Peter Gullberg

Volvo Group Trucks Technology, Goteborg, Sweden

Paper No. IMECE2014-37415, pp. V007T09A080; 9 pages
  • ASME 2014 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 7: Fluids Engineering Systems and Technologies
  • Montreal, Quebec, Canada, November 14–20, 2014
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4954-5
  • Copyright © 2014 by ASME


The classic approach of cooling airflow and cooling performance analysis is to measure component performance (pressure rise, pressure drop, rejected heat etc.) in a Plenum to Plenum test facility. Based on this component data a 1D system model is built and calibrated with full vehicle test data. Full vehicle data is typically acquired from a chassis dynamometer.

This modeling approach assumes each component operates in a similar manner in the rig as in the vehicle. Concerning the fan, several effects are then assumed negligible such as airflow distribution into the fan and also non uniform pressure gradients in the installation aft of the fan.

This paper study and quantify these assumptions and installation effects by the use of 3D CFD correlated to experimental data. The first part will be to demonstrate a correlation between performance test data in a Plenum to Plenum test facility and the corresponding simulation thereof. Based on this correlation the test rig influence can be isolated and removed from the fan performance measurement (based on detailed CFD information). The second part will be to regenerate the fan curve in a truck installation by using 3D CFD and varying the system restriction. This step will also be correlated to Vehicle testing in a chassis dynamometer. The third step will be to compare the in rig fan performance curve to the in vehicle fan performance curve.

The results indicate that the plenum to plenum test rig significantly influence the performance data of the fan in a non-trivial way. Removing the rig influence on the fan performance this paper demonstrates that the fan operates similar in the rig as in the truck.

Copyright © 2014 by ASME
Topics: Cooling , Air flow



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