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Vehicle Aerodynamics: Drag Reduction by Surface Dimples

Authors: C. K. Chear, S. S. Dol


For a bluff body, dimples behave like roughness elements in stimulating a turbulent boundary layer, leading to delayed flow separation, a smaller wake and lower form drag. This is very different in principle from the application of dimples to streamlined body, where any reduction in drag would be predominantly due to a reduction in skin friction. In the present work, a car model with different dimple geometry is simulated using k-ε turbulence modeling to determine its effect to the aerodynamics performance. Overall, the results show that the application of dimples manages to reduce the drag coefficient of the car model.

Keywords: Aerodynamics, Boundary Layer, Dimple, Drag, Kinetic Energy, Turbulence.

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