Computational Analysis of Concept Autonomous Heavy Vehicle to Reduce Drag Using Shape Optimization Technique and Add-On Devices Paper No. 2024-DF-10 Section Technical Paper


Dr. Mohammad Rafiq B. Agrewale
Pratik Deepak Agrawal


The design of heavy commercial vehicles plays a vital role in improving aerodynamic performance. Typically, conventional commercial vehicles have box-shaped driver cabins and standard trailer configurations leading to high fuel consumption. The streamlined flow around the vehicle will improve the aerodynamic characteristics and directly influence fuel consumption. As a part of technological advancement, the design of the autonomous vehicle with streamlined flow characteristics will give a highly efficient vehicle. The objective of this research work is to perform a computational analysis of the concept of autonomous heavy vehicles to reduce drag. Initially, to get streamline flow characteristics around the vehicle, the shape optimization technique is used with different design aspects. Further, various add-on devices such as boat tails and side skirts are incorporated into the vehicle trailer part. Based on benchmarking and market surveys, a typical conventional heavy commercial vehicle model is selected as the baseline vehicle model. Considering autonomous vehicles, the concept design of the vehicle is proposed using shape optimization techniques and add-on devices. To observe flow characteristics and to evaluate drag, the computational analysis is performed using a realizable k-e turbulence model at a speed of 80kmph for the baseline vehicle model and proposed concept autonomous heavy vehicle model. The result shows a low drag coefficient for the proposed conceptual autonomous heavy vehicle model as compared to the baseline vehicle model for the selected parameters. The overall reduction of the drag coefficient is observed at around 54%. Thus, the proposed vehicle design using autonomous technology can be used for efficient freight transportation.

Keywords: Flow characteristics, concept autonomous vehicle, shape optimization, drag coefficient, add-on devices


How to Cite
Dr. Mohammad Rafiq B. Agrewale, & Pratik Deepak Agrawal. (2024). Computational Analysis of Concept Autonomous Heavy Vehicle to Reduce Drag Using Shape Optimization Technique and Add-On Devices: Paper No. 2024-DF-10. ARAI Journal of Mobility Technology, 4(2), 1172–1180.


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