NASA Scientific and Technical Information Paper (STI)

NASA Aerodynamics

Aerodynamics Research Revolutionizes Truck Design Originating Technology/NASA Acknowledgement

The last 35 years have seen a sea change in the design of trucks on America's highways, reflecting extensive research into vehicle aerodynamics and fluid dynamics conducted by NASA engineers. Thanks to the ingenuity of a Dryden Flight Research Center researcher bicycling through the California desert and a team of engineers in Virginia, the shape of rigs and recreational vehicles (RVs) today owes as much to the skies as it does the open road.

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MIRA Report

Airtabs™ VORTEX GENERATORS TECHNICAL TRIALS ARTICULATED HGV Tractor-Trailer Gap Tests

Motor Industry Research Association High Speed Test Track (MIRA) This test was a co-operative between the Institute of Road Transport Engineers (IRTE) and the Brewers Transport Advisory Committee (BTAC)

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Honda Civic Wind Tunnel Report

LOCKHEED GEORGIA LOWSPEED WIND TUNNEL HONDA CIVIC HATCHBACK Airtab® MODIFICATION RESULTS

Executive Summary:

This report shows conclusively that the Airtab® product reduced aerodynamic drag forces at the base area (the rear facing surface) of the test vehicle. The test showed a 4% reduction in horse power required to maintain a steady speed of 55 mph. Only the sides of the vehicle were fitted to assure the most aerodynamically symmetrical run data. By adding Airtabs™ to the rear roof line as well, a conservative performance benefit extrapolation of these findings would be in the 50% range resulting in a further HP required reduction to approximately 6%. The test also shows that the vehicle drag coefficient (CD) is reduced at every yaw angle from zero to thirty degrees angle from the airflow and that this CD reduction increases at greater yaw angles.

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An Expeditor & His Aitabs™

By Ken Slaughter

The thing about wind resistance and aerodynamic drag is, once you have taken the simple steps to reduce them, it’s a set-it-and-forget it kind of thing. At that point, the only thing that affects resistance and drag is speed.

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