Interaction of Downforce Generating Devices and Cooling Air Flow - A Numerical and Experimental Study on Open Wheeled Race Cars
Paper i proceeding, 2012
This study reflects on two areas of vehicle aerodynamics, optimising cooling performance and features that will improve the handling of the car. Both areas will have a significant impact on the overall performance of the car and at the same time these areas are linked to each other.
The considered vehicle in this study was the Chalmers Formula Student 2011 Formula SAE car and the flow field was analysed using both numerical simulations as well as performing wind tunnel experiments on a 1:3-scale model of the car.
The focus on increasing downforce without increasing the aerodynamic drag is particularly good in Formula SAE since fuel economy is an event at the competition. Therefore, the intention of this work is to present a study on how undertrays with different design such as added foot plates, diffuser and strakes can improve the downforce and reduce the drag. Apart from this focus has been towards a common issue among open wheeled race cars with the radiator placed behind the front wheels and how changes in this area will influence the handling of the car. Interference effects between these parts were seen as well as the influence on the general aerodynamic performance of the car.