Aerodynamic Effects of Shape, Camber, Pitch, and Ground Proximity on Idealized Ground-Vehicle Bodies

[+] Author and Article Information
A. R. George

Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y. 14853

J. Fluids Eng 103(4), 631-637 (Dec 01, 1981) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3241783 History: Received July 31, 1979; Online October 26, 2009


Results are presented from an experimental study of the lift, drag, pitching moment, and flow field of a series of rounded edge simple bluff bodies of various cambers and tapers. The bodies were proportioned to be similar to those of idealized ground vehicles such as automobiles, vans, and trucks. The models were tested with and without simulated wheels, underbody roughness, and proximity to a stationary and moving ground plane. The pitch angle was varied at zero yaw angle. The force and moment coefficients and flow visualization studies indicated the existence and importance of flow regimes characterized by a pair of trailing vortices on the leeward side of the body similar to those found over an inclined body of revolution and over slender delta wings. These flows can suppress bubble-type separation. The effects of a rough underbody are generally detrimental although less so if the rough surface is on the windward side. A moving ground plane was found to give significantly different lift and drag for small ground clearances characteristic of actual road vehicles.

Copyright © 1981 by ASME
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