Project abstract for group kittelso

Use of Computer Aided Engineering Software Tools to Improve the Performance, Safety, and Environmental Impact of a Small Vehicle

This project’s focus is to develop a single seat car that incorporates innovative and novel technologies all developed using virtual computational techniques. Computer models are developed using Hyperworks, Fluent, and Ricardo software packages to examine different aspects of the car. Hyperworks, a mechanical finite element analysis software package, is being used to examine alterations made to the conventional steel frame. Researchers will examine the improvements based on overall weight, stiffness, and cost of manufacturing. The new frame designs will also be analyzed to verify their safety against previously accepted designs. Fluent, a computational fluid dynamics software package, is being used to evaluate the drag and vertical load created by aerodynamic elements. Researchers will be working to optimize the amount of vertical load generated versus drag to provide an ideal balance between fuel economy and improved traction. Ricardo WAVE, a 1-D engine simulation program, is being used to study the effects intake and exhaust geometry have on the overall volumetric efficiency. The final designs that have been selected after thorough examination using these three computational tools will be built to create working physical models. The physical models will then be tested so empirical results can be compared to computational results. This data will then be used to improve accuracy of computational models so future simulations can be iterated to improve the overall design of the vehicle. 

A bibliography of this group’s publications acknowledging MSI is attached.