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Title: Air Flow Modeling in the Wind Tunnel of the FHWA Aerodynamics Laboratory at Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center

Abstract

Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modeling is widely used in industry for design and in the research community to support, compliment, and extend the scope of experimental studies. Analysis of transportation infrastructure using high performance cluster computing with CFD and structural mechanics software is done at the Transportation Research and Analysis Computing Center (TRACC) at Argonne National Laboratory. These resources, available at TRACC, were used to perform advanced three-dimensional computational simulations of the wind tunnel laboratory at the Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center (TFHRC). The goals were to verify the CFD model of the laboratory wind tunnel and then to use versions of the model to provide the capability to (1) perform larger parametric series of tests than can be easily done in the laboratory with available budget and time, (2) to extend testing to wind speeds that cannot be achieved in the laboratory, and (3) to run types of tests that are very difficult or impossible to run in the laboratory. Modern CFD software has many physics models and domain meshing options. Models, including the choice of turbulence and other physics models and settings, the computational mesh, and the solver settings, need to be validated against measurements to verify that themore » results are sufficiently accurate for use in engineering applications. The wind tunnel model was built and tested, by comparing to experimental measurements, to provide a valuable tool to perform these types of studies in the future as a complement and extension to TFHRC’s experimental capabilities. Wind tunnel testing at TFHRC is conducted in a subsonic open-jet wind tunnel with a 1.83 m (6 foot) by 1.83 m (6 foot) cross section. A three component dual force-balance system is used to measure forces acting on tested models, and a three degree of freedom suspension system is used for dynamic response tests. Pictures of the room are shown in Figure 1-1 to Figure 1-4. A detailed CAD geometry and CFD model of the wind tunnel laboratory at TFHRC was built and tested. Results were compared against experimental wind velocity measurements at a large number of locations around the room. This testing included an assessment of the air flow uniformity provided by the tunnel to the test zone and assessment of room geometry effects, such as influence of the proximity the room walls, the non-symmetrical position of the tunnel in the room, and the influence of the room setup on the air flow in the room. This information is useful both for simplifying the computational model and in deciding whether or not moving, or removing, some of the furniture or other movable objects in the room will change the flow in the test zone.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [1]
  1. Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States). Transportation Research and Analysis Computing Center (TRACC) Energy Systems Division
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE; US Department of Transportation
OSTI Identifier:
1401969
Report Number(s):
ANL/NED/17/2
138247
DOE Contract Number:
AC02-06CH11357
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
97 MATHEMATICS AND COMPUTING

Citation Formats

Sitek, M. A., Lottes, S. A., and Bojanowski, C.. Air Flow Modeling in the Wind Tunnel of the FHWA Aerodynamics Laboratory at Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.2172/1401969.
Sitek, M. A., Lottes, S. A., & Bojanowski, C.. Air Flow Modeling in the Wind Tunnel of the FHWA Aerodynamics Laboratory at Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center. United States. doi:10.2172/1401969.
Sitek, M. A., Lottes, S. A., and Bojanowski, C.. Fri . "Air Flow Modeling in the Wind Tunnel of the FHWA Aerodynamics Laboratory at Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center". United States. doi:10.2172/1401969. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1401969.
@article{osti_1401969,
title = {Air Flow Modeling in the Wind Tunnel of the FHWA Aerodynamics Laboratory at Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center},
author = {Sitek, M. A. and Lottes, S. A. and Bojanowski, C.},
abstractNote = {Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modeling is widely used in industry for design and in the research community to support, compliment, and extend the scope of experimental studies. Analysis of transportation infrastructure using high performance cluster computing with CFD and structural mechanics software is done at the Transportation Research and Analysis Computing Center (TRACC) at Argonne National Laboratory. These resources, available at TRACC, were used to perform advanced three-dimensional computational simulations of the wind tunnel laboratory at the Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center (TFHRC). The goals were to verify the CFD model of the laboratory wind tunnel and then to use versions of the model to provide the capability to (1) perform larger parametric series of tests than can be easily done in the laboratory with available budget and time, (2) to extend testing to wind speeds that cannot be achieved in the laboratory, and (3) to run types of tests that are very difficult or impossible to run in the laboratory. Modern CFD software has many physics models and domain meshing options. Models, including the choice of turbulence and other physics models and settings, the computational mesh, and the solver settings, need to be validated against measurements to verify that the results are sufficiently accurate for use in engineering applications. The wind tunnel model was built and tested, by comparing to experimental measurements, to provide a valuable tool to perform these types of studies in the future as a complement and extension to TFHRC’s experimental capabilities. Wind tunnel testing at TFHRC is conducted in a subsonic open-jet wind tunnel with a 1.83 m (6 foot) by 1.83 m (6 foot) cross section. A three component dual force-balance system is used to measure forces acting on tested models, and a three degree of freedom suspension system is used for dynamic response tests. Pictures of the room are shown in Figure 1-1 to Figure 1-4. A detailed CAD geometry and CFD model of the wind tunnel laboratory at TFHRC was built and tested. Results were compared against experimental wind velocity measurements at a large number of locations around the room. This testing included an assessment of the air flow uniformity provided by the tunnel to the test zone and assessment of room geometry effects, such as influence of the proximity the room walls, the non-symmetrical position of the tunnel in the room, and the influence of the room setup on the air flow in the room. This information is useful both for simplifying the computational model and in deciding whether or not moving, or removing, some of the furniture or other movable objects in the room will change the flow in the test zone.},
doi = {10.2172/1401969},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Fri Sep 01 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Fri Sep 01 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}

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