top of page

Large-Scale Side By Side Stereo-PIV Measurements In An Automotive Wind Tunnel: Aerodynamic Influence Of Ride Height Variations.

Ahmed Oguzhan Erdogdu (1), Steffen Hüttig (2), Juan Camilo Londono Alfaro (2), Timo Gericke (2), Andreas Schröder (3)

1. LaVision GmbH, Göttingen, Germany
2. Volkswagen AG, Wolfsburg, Germany
3. Institute of Aerodynamics and Flow Technology, German Aerospace Center (DLR), Göttingen, Germany


In this investigation, we conducted large-scale Stereo PIV experiments in the flow around a Volkswagen ID.4. within the Aerodynamic and Aeroacoustic Wind Tunnel (AAK) at Volkswagen AG, Wolfsburg. The primary objective of these experiments was to investigate the effects of ride height variation on the near wake of the passenger vehicle using Stereo PIV, while minimizing wind tunnel occupancy. The measurements aimed to create datasets for CFD validation to improve virtual aerodynamic development capabilities of passenger vehicles. The experiment was performed on a 1:1 scale vehicle and multiple cross-sectional planes were scanned along the longitudinal axis of the vehicle. The impact of ride height alterations on the wake flow topology were evaluated. Average velocity vector fields were computed per case, providing comprehensive insights into the aerodynamic effects of diverse vehicle setups. A small change in the ride height has shown to have a significant impact on the wake topology. The results show that the electric SUV ID.4 can yield a wake topology similar to the estate back and fast/notchback type of vehicle, depending on the ride height. The normal ride height of the ID.4 shows to have a broader but lower wake region, with a significant downwash. The PIV results of this configuration show significant similarities to the wake topology of a fast back vehicle. Lowering the ride height by 15 mm has shown already to be enough to cause a global effect on the wake topology and to exhibit a narrower wake and recirculation region, like an estate back vehicle. Additionally, the association between the drag/lift coefficients and the wake topology of both configurations was discussed. Results have shown that sole measurements in the wake are not sufficient to fully explain changes in the determined drag or front lift coefficients. The rear lift coefficients however, indicate a stronger relationship with the near wake topology of the vehicle.

bottom of page