A Comparison of Full Scale Aft Cavity Drag Reduction Concepts With Equivalent Wind Tunnel Test Results

Paper #:
  • 2013-01-2429

Published:
  • 2013-09-24
DOI:
  • 10.4271/2013-01-2429
Citation:
Kehs, J., Visser, K., Grossman, J., Niemiec, J. et al., "A Comparison of Full Scale Aft Cavity Drag Reduction Concepts With Equivalent Wind Tunnel Test Results," SAE Int. J. Commer. Veh. 6(2):486-497, 2013, doi:10.4271/2013-01-2429.
Pages:
12
Abstract:
Comparison studies have been conducted on a 1:16th scale model and a full scale tractor trailer of a variety of sealed aft cavity devices as a means to develop or enhance commercial drag reduction technology for class 8 vehicles. Various base cavity geometries with pressure taps were created for the scale model. The studies confirmed that length has an important effect on performance. The interaction of the boat-tailed aft cavity with other drag reduction devices, specifically side skirts, was investigated with results showing no discernable drag performance interaction between them. Overall, the experiments show that a boat-tailed aft cavity can reduce the drag up to 13%. Full-scale tests of a commercially derived product based on these scale tests were also completed using SAE Type II testing procedures. Full-scale tests indicated a fuel savings of over 6.5%. The implementation of these devices is shown to be a viable, effective and economical way to reduce fuel consumption on ground transport vehicles.
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