Considerable drag reduction and fuel saving of a tractor–trailer using additive aerodynamic devices

The drag reduction of commercial vehicles is the principal challenge to improving fuel saving and decreasing air pollution. Accordingly, several flow control devices, including gap fairing, cab roof fairing, boat tail, and side skirt were introduced to reduce the aerodynamic drag exerted on heavy vehicles. Although such devices have exhibited good drag reduction performance, their aerodynamic performance can be improved further. Moreover, a comprehensive and systematic research is required, including drag force measurement, flow field analysis and real-scale proving ground test, to evaluate the fuel consumption of heavy vehicles. In this study, the drag reduction effect of the aero full package (AFP) of a tractor–trailer, which integrated gap fairing, flap-type side skirt and lower inclined air deflector boat tail, was investigated through wind tunnel experiments and proving ground test. On the basis of the results of drag and PIV measurement, the integrated AFP was found to significantly modify the flow structure around the vehicle, thereby leading to a 26.5% reduction in drag coefficient compared with the reference tractor-trailer model (CD = 0.693). Furthermore, the proving ground test using real tractor–trailer verified that the integrated AFP provides 13.4% fuel saving. The present results will provide practical information for improving the aerodynamic performance and fuel efficiency of heavy vehicles.


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  • Accession Number: 01718464
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jun 11 2019 3:06PM