Drag Reduction of a Reverse-Engineered Vehicle

G. Lecrivain, A. Slaouti, and I. Kennedy (UK)


Reverse Engineering, CAD procedure, automotive surfaces, CFD, drag reduction


Reverse-Engineering has become a reliable tool used to create a virtual model of a complex 3D shape for which there is no Computer-Aided Drawings (CAD) data. In cases where this complex body interacts with a fluid flow, such as a car or a vehicle part, the external aerodynamic performance of the corresponding reverse-engineered CAD model can be numerically assessed using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD). From the predicted flow, the body can then be redesigned for an improved performance prior to its remanufacturing. In this paper, a multidisciplinary procedure involving Reverse-Engineering and CAD is suggested and described to recreate a suitable watertight model of a sports car for which CFD analysis can take place. The different errors embedded in the successive stages leading to the final model are accurately assessed and minimised. Finally, the whole vehicle is remodelled for a drag reduction. Results show an enhanced car with a reduced drag coefficient.

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