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Optimizing Dynamic Performance of High-Speed Road Vehicles Using Aerodynamic Aids

[+] Author Affiliations
Tushita Sikder, Saurabh Kapoor, Yuping He

University of Ontario Institute of Technology, Oshawa, ON, Canada

Paper No. IMECE2016-65414, pp. V007T09A060; 9 pages
  • ASME 2016 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 7: Fluids Engineering
  • Phoenix, Arizona, USA, November 11–17, 2016
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5061-9
  • Copyright © 2016 by ASME


This paper focuses on the effects of aerodynamic aids on the lateral and longitudinal dynamics of high-speed road vehicles. Aerodynamic aids, such as spoilers, can reduce drag to improve vehicle’s fuel economy and acceleration performance. On the other hand, aerodynamic aids can be utilized to enhance the lateral stability of the vehicle at high speeds by generating downforce or negative lift. However, the co-existence of drag and lift creates a paradox, that is, the downforce generated to improve car’s high-speed stability acts as a parasitic force on the car-body and slows down the vehicle forward speed. This paper will illustrate the juxtaposed effects of the aerodynamic forces on the lateral stability of the vehicle. Airfoils in the role of external aerodynamic aids will be examined based on their shapes, geometrical configurations, and at varying relative positions using the CFD technique. Moreover, the effects of attack angles, change in Reynold’s numbers (air stream velocities), and varying ground clearance on the lateral dynamics of the vehicle will be analyzed using numerical simulations with ANSYS FLUENT software package. The results and reliability of CFD simulations has a high dependency on the size of the grid, thus the aim of this paper will be to ensure that the results are independent of the grid size. Selection of the optimum design will be based on performance parameters like drag and lift coefficients. The challenge posed here is to ensure the lateral stability of the vehicle while achieving high average speed. Therefore, the main goal of the study is to enhance handling capabilities of the road vehicles at high speeds while minimizing the drag.

Copyright © 2016 by ASME
Topics: Motor vehicles



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