Theme 2: Multi-Physics and Multi-Functional Simulation Methods.

Lead Research Organisation: Loughborough University
Department Name: Aeronautical and Automotive Engineering

Abstract

The multi-physics theme is a programme of linked activities that improve the simulation capability within the Automotive Design and Engineering process. It is intended that the methods will have application across a wide range of functions, dynamics and attributes of the vehicle. For example; the off-road capability, the effects off real world aerodynamics and the modelling of the noise within the passenger compartment. The ability to apply simulation methods from initial concept through to engineering verification allows robust decision making at all stages of the process. This will shorten product development times, improve flexibility and the ability to respond to market pressures, reduce reliance on physical prototypes and reduce costs and improve competitiveness. The simulation capability will therefore be expanded both in breadth and depth and methods for making simulation tools available throughout the design and engineering process will be explored.
The multi-physics theme is structured around three common research challenges associated with the modelling of complex phenomena in an Automotive context; Reduced Order Modelling, Coupling, and High Fidelity Modelling. These are pursued through several specific projects that address different aspects of the vehicle. By addressing multiple functions within a single proposal there is considerable added value through both academic cross-fertilisation and in cross-attribute collaboration within JLR.
The three main research challenges are:
High Fidelity Modelling; here refers generally to the simulation of complex phenomenon, for example, capturing the time dependent flow-field around a vehicle where the simulation must accurately resolve the physical processes. An alternative example is capturing the complex tyre-terrain interaction that occurs in an off road situation.
The coupling challenge is associated with connecting multiple simulations in terms of the physics and also the process of timing and communication. The emphasis here is on the physics. In addition, the coupling challenge refers to the connection between large simulations running on an high performance computing system and simpler reduced models that are designed to capture only the most important aspects of the physics, for example between a full computational simulation of the in-cylinder flow and a simple model to predict the engine emissions.
A reduced order model can be a reduction of a much larger simulation or system of simulations that can be used, within prescribed limits, to investigate specific aspects of a design or to quickly optimise a design before escalating to higher order. Alternatively a reduced order model might be coupled with a higher order model. For example a high fidelity numerical simulation of the aerodynamics might be coupled with a reduced order vehicle handling model to investigate crosswind characteristics.
The work is organised into three packages, the first focuses on fluid dynamic driven aspects of simulation and comprises three projects: Real World Aerodynamics, Surface Contamination and Engine-out Emissions. The first undertakes high fidelity unsteady flow simulations of a dynamic vehicle in a realistic environment, the second modelling of surface contamination using the flow predictions from the first project and the third determines emissions based upon the flow-field in the cylinder prior to combustion. The second package focuses on the simulation of effects of rough terrain, through three projects: the prediction of terra-mechanics excitations and their effect on vehicle dynamics, the transmission to the passenger cabin in the form of noise vibration and harshness and their effect on fatigue failure of critical components. The third package will develop methods of automated model order reduction and will take as it cases work from across the theme, initially relatively simple slow-varying problems and then extending to more complex multi-nodal models.

Planned Impact

The primary benefactor of this research is the automotive design and manufacturing industry where the implementation of multi-physics simulation will allow vehicles to be designed more rapidly with reduced physical verification and validation. This will result in a product with a faster time to market that meets customer expectations. Multi-physics simulation is also important where there are closely aligned research challenges, such as aerospace and nuclear engineering. The research is also of considerable interest to the academic community in a number of related fields where the projected outcomes from high fidelity models, automated reduced order modelling, and the coupling of multi fidelity models have applications more broadly across automotive, aerospace and nuclear engineering, but also in Chemical, Mechanical, Electrical and Systems Engineering.
This project is partly funded by Jaguar Land-Rover (JLR) who have been closely involved in developing the scope of the proposal and will continue to be involved throughout the lifecycle of the project. This close collaboration, chanelled through the JLR theme lead, will ensure that knowledge is transferred effectively throughout the duration of the work. This includes both specific modelling methods, for example of surface contamination, and reduced order models of, for example an aspect of crosswind stability, validation data and cases of coupling of high fidelity and reduced order models. The methods and software used in the project will be closely aligned with the practices of JLR through the JLR theme lead, so that advances can be incorporated into the industrial design process.
The primary impact of this work will be to increase the competitiveness of the UK automotive design and manufacturing sector so contributing towards increased wealth creation and economic prosperity. Additional considerations are; reduction of CO2 emissions, through improved aerodynamics and engine design and an improvement in road vehicle safety, through improved vision and improved off-road capability. Even small improvements in these two areas have a significant benefit to society and the economy.
Economic and societal impact of the outcomes of this project will be achieved through: a) close links with industry throughout the project; b) short secondments of researchers to JLR during the project; c) workshops open to industry and academics and d) a special edition of an international journal.
The Department of Aeronautical and Automotive Engineering at Loughborough has many strong research links and partnerships with other engineering companies including Lotus Engineering, Caterpillar, Intelligent Energy, BAE Systems and Rolls-Royce Civil Aerospace. This will allow outcomes from the project to be rapidly disseminated to research engineers in these companies. Wider impact will be sought through publication at international conferences.
Workshops will be held at the midpoint and end of the programme to which both academia and industry will be invited. These workshops will be used to showcase the three work packages and to elicit feedback and guidance.
Aligned with the proposal, eight PhD studentships will be funded directly by JLR (60%) and Loughborough University (40% through existing departmental studentship funds) and these will work together with the EPSRC funded PDRAs to achieve the project goals. Where feasible secondments of PDRA's and students at JLR will allow the research team to better understand the industrial practices that are relevant to the research and for the students to demonstrate the capability of their research on real vehicle problems. It is envisaged that many of these PDRA's and PhD students would, after graduation, be employed by JLR or other UK Automotive R&D organisations helping to close the UK gap in highly skilled engineers required by industry.

Publications

10 25 50
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A Dowsett (2016) ENVOQUE VARIABILITY REPORT

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A Dowsett (2016) NVH VARIABILITY IN AUTOMOTIVE VEHICLES in Applied Acoustics Journal

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Abolfathi A. (2016) A survey on the variability of dynamic stiffness data of identical vehicles in Proceedings of the INTER-NOISE 2016 - 45th International Congress and Exposition on Noise Control Engineering: Towards a Quieter Future

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Beavis NJ (2018) Numerical Evaluation of Combustion Regimes in a GDI Engine. in Flow, turbulence and combustion

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Bekakos C (2016) Pneumatic tyres interacting with deformable terrains in Journal of Physics: Conference Series

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Bekakos C (2016) Off-Road Tire-Terrain Interaction: An Analytical Solution in SAE International Journal of Commercial Vehicles

 
Description There are multiple outputs. 1, models for off road simulation - these did not exist prior to this project 2, methods for surface contamination prediction 3, external water management simulation tools. -not available anywhere else, 4 Strain controlled fatigue capability - not available elsewhere, 5, fatigue material properties measurement and modelling 6, coupled dynamics and CFD simulation to allow overtaking safety to be explored, 7, An automated method for producing high speed models for design or real time control, 7, In depth knowledge of interior noise variability... 8 New methods for IC engine development through improved early simulation.
Exploitation Route They are being transferred into JLR and we have been able to publish widely for the community
Sectors Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software),Transport

 
Description The award consists of multiple work packages and projects many of which have produced outputs that have been transferred into the co-funder - Jaguar Land Rover. This includes knowledge that has changed processes, models and software and the transfer of skilled people. The models and tools are being actively deployed within the business to make JLR more competitive.
First Year Of Impact 2017
Sector Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software),Transport
Impact Types Societal,Economic

 
Description EPSRC Industrial Case award. Aerodynamic methods to maintain ADAS sensor operability in adverse conditions
Amount £115,000 (GBP)
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2019 
End 09/2023
 
Description EPSRC case award - Driver modelling
Amount £111,000 (GBP)
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2017 
End 09/2021
 
Description EPSRC case award - Thermal energy management for Battery electric vehicles
Amount £111,000 (GBP)
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2018 
End 09/2022
 
Description EPSRC industrial Case award - tyre fingerprinting
Amount £111,096 (GBP)
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2018 
End 09/2022
 
Description Industrial funding for studentships to complement PSi funding
Amount £318,245 (GBP)
Organisation Jaguar Land Rover 
Sector Private
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2013 
End 03/2018
 
Description Industrial iCASE
Amount £107,560 (GBP)
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2015 
End 09/2019
 
Description Industrial iCASE
Amount £108,000 (GBP)
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2017 
End 09/2021
 
Title Real Time Terra Mechanics model 
Description This is a model for simulating the behaviour of a deformable tyre (on a vehicle) on a deformable terrain. An essential model for off-road simulations 
Type Of Material Computer model/algorithm 
Year Produced 2016 
Provided To Others? No  
Impact The model has been integrated into the Jaguar Land Rovers preferred software and is in use. 
 
Title Automated Reduced Order Modelling - Application 
Description The tool is a Matlab application (now on the Jaguar Land Rover application site) available to all engineers to generate reduced order models from large models. These may then be used, for example, in real time control or in design studies etc. The tool provides a robust and efficient method for engineers to generate these models without in depth knowledge of the model order reduction methods that underpin the work. 
Type Of Technology Webtool/Application 
Year Produced 2017 
Impact The tool is being used within Jaguar Land Rover to improve efficiency 
 
Title Strain controlled fatigue application 
Description An add on piece of software to run Abaqus in strain control for fatigue simulation. 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2017 
Impact Delivers a completely new and unique capability to Jaguar Land Rover. 
 
Title Terra Mechanics software 
Description A real time terra-mechanics model (off road tyre model) was provided in Matlab and also integrated into Carmaker and Simpack. 
Type Of Technology Software 
Year Produced 2018 
Impact The software is in use at Jaguar Land Rover as part of the design and product development process 
 
Description DiPaRT event - Bristol 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Presentation of the activities of one work package - (Primarily Real World Aerodynamics) to an Aerospace based audience showcasing the advances in the methods we are applying to Automotive work.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://cfms.org.uk/airbus-dipart-2016/
 
Description NAFEMS Improving the impact of simulation. Seminar 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Invited presentation at the seminar to show the wider community the breadth and depth of the work that we have been engaged in on the PSi research programme. Prompted a large number of questions and some additional enquires after the seminar.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Visit Ford Detroit - and Cologne 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Invited presentation by three team members to the Ford Global Vehicle aerodynamics community. Purpose was to raise awareness of our research activities, showcase the advances that we have made and engage with potential future funders. Invitation arose as a consequence of our conference publications.

The outcome was a second invitation to discuss applications for funding through the Ford University Research programme - the second meeting was in 2017 and will result in joint funding applications between UK Ford Germany and Ford US.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016,2017
 
Description Visit Rolls Royce 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Invited lecture to Rolls Royce technical group to showcase mutli-phase work that we have completed in the past 3-4 years.

Roots of this are a Rolls Royce funded project that provided the first building blocks in this field - this work passed into the PSi programme and has now gone full circle as Rolls Royce are interested in taking it up as part of the CDT in Gas Turbines.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016