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Aerodynamic Drag Reduction of a Heavy Truck with Variable Cooling Air Intake Area

Lisa Larsson ; Helena Martini
Göteborg : Chalmers tekniska högskola, 2009. 94 s. Diploma thesis - Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering / Polymer Technology, Chalmers University of Technology, Göteborg, 2009.
[Examensarbete på avancerad nivå]

The extensive environmental debate of today forces vehicle manufacturers to develop new concepts with lower fuel consumption and emission levels than ever before. One way of reducing the fuel consumption is to improve the aerodynamic features of the vehicle. One source of drag is ascribed to the so-called cooling drag, which is defined as the resistance produced by the air passing through the underhood cooling system. A decreased amount of cooling air drag can result in substantial fuel consumption and emission reductions for heavy trucks. The objectives in this research is to quantify the possible reduction in drag as a consequence of a restricted cooling air intake area for a Volvo FH16. Two approaches are used; the first method is to cover the grill area of the truck and the second method is to cover the cooling package. Two degrees of coverage exist in the study; the grill or the cooling system is either 100% covered or covered up to the Air Condition (AC) condenser. Another study that is carried out is to investigate the influence of a closed splitline. The results are achieved by using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and the two commercial softwares ANSA and StarCCM+ are the tools used in this research. The results from the simulations show that it is preferable to cover the grill compared to cover at the cooling package. Covering the grill and splitline of the Volvo FH16 results in a fuel consumption reduction of 2.3% compared to the original truck configuration. A trend that is clearly seen is that a closed splitline always decreases drag for all the tested truck configurations. Even though a closed grill is preferred compared to a closed cooling package, it can still be worth to develop a technical solution for covering the cooling package if no suitable technical solution can be found for covering the grill. The reduction in drag for a covered cooling package is still quite substantial. The case with fully covered cooling package shows a fuel consumption reduction of 1.2%. As a conclusion it can be said that restricting the cooling air intake area for the Volvo FH16 can result in a substantial fuel consumption reduction.

Nyckelord: drag reduction cooling system truck aerodynamics CFD

Publikationen registrerades 2011-01-14. Den ändrades senast 2013-04-04

CPL ID: 133663

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