Nalanagula, S. and Varadharajan, G., "Aerodynamics Drag Reductions Methodology for the Commercial Vehicles Using Computational Fluid Dynamics," SAE Technical Paper 2016-01-8139, 2016, doi:10.4271/2016-01-8139.
Aerodynamic drag contributes to 50-60% of fuel consumption in trucks on highways. The limits of conventional wind tunnel testing have forced researchers to study about the drag and ways of reducing it computationally. Due to the stricter norms and eco-friendly approaches, truck manufacturers have begun to invest more for developing truck aerodynamics. This paper evaluates a European vehicle on European conditions. Drag reduction are mostly made by geometric changes. Pressure drag, a major drag for trucks as they run at lower speeds is produced by the shape of the object. Making streamlined bodies as trucks are tougher since it can affect its purpose. Therefore, addition of some components can suffice the needs. The changes in geometry have been implied and analysis for these geometrical changes are done to analyze the better geometry which can provide drag reduction features. The geometrical changes considered are providing side skirts, boattails and roof deflector angle. The paper analyzes the exclusion of side mirrors, inclusion of side skirts, boattails and optimization of roof deflector angle. Individual performances were analyzed and combination of all were also analyzed. All geometrical changes were considered and the resultant drag reduction is calculated. The better geometries can be used in the near future by manufacturers to reach the norms and regulations enforced by various governments around the world.