Written by: OptimumG
Investigating Aerodynamic Balance

Investigating Aerodynamic Balance

This case study focuses on utilizing the aero map feature of OptimumDynamics. In this study we demonstrate two different implementations of this feature. We first look at the effect of changing springs on aerodynamic distribution. We then proceed to study the relationship between bump stop gap and vehicle speed.

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Creating an Anti-Roll Bar Database

Creating an Anti-Roll Bar Database

OptimumDynamics can be used to predict the behavior of a vehicle for different setup changes. In this study the effects of the vehicle anti-roll bar (ARB) on percent front lateral load transfer distribution (LLTD) is investigated. This study creates a database of possible ARB combinations.

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Comparing Tire Data

Comparing Tire Data

Comparing the force and moment characteristics of two sets of tire data is an important task. It is important for tire manufacturers and also for vehicle dynamicists. Differences between the sets of data could include:

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Spring & Dampers, Part Six

Spring & Dampers, Part Six

After examining damping in roll last month, we will now look at springs and damping in pitch of the car. As explained last time with roll damping acting in a polar coordinate system, pitch is very similar- except the sprung mass is rotating about the pitch axis instead of the roll axis. Roll damping is a usually overlooked aspect in a suspension system, and pitch damping is overlooked even more so.

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Spring & Dampers, Part Five

Spring & Dampers, Part Five

Roll Damping: Often an overlooked aspect on racecars is the damping in roll. Most of the time, cars have a damper for each single-wheel spring, but not a damper for the anti-roll bars. The goal of this tech tip is to explain the benefits of using a roll damper. Where this setup is not allowed in the rules, the knowledge will help in understanding the setup and compromises in the lack of a roll damper.

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Spring & Dampers, Part Four

Spring & Dampers, Part Four

From driving street cars, we all know that if you hit a speed bump going very slow the body of the car (sprung mass) moves vertically almost as much as the wheels. Hitting the same bump going fast (you know you have done it, especially in a rental car) the body of the car does not move nearly as much. The size of the bump was the same, but the body motions were different depending on the speed at which you hit it. The cause of this is that response of the system (the car sitting on the suspension) is dictated by the frequency and amplitude of the input. Hitting the speed bump faster increases the frequency of the disturbance, producing a
different response. To quantify this reality we use the concept of transmissibility.

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Tech Tip: Springs & Dampers, Part Three

Tech Tip: Springs & Dampers, Part Three

After understanding the first two tech tips in the Spring & Damper series, you know how to choose ride frequencies for your racecar, calculate the spring rate needed for the chosen frequencies, choose a roll gradient, and calculate the stiffness required from the anti-roll bars to produce your desired roll gradient. Now, what is the deal with these “third” springs people and using, and how in the world do I know where to start when it comes to damping on the racecar? Pitch springs will be skipped for now, as damping baselines will be much more useful.

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Springs & Dampers, Part Two

Springs & Dampers, Part Two

After understanding last month’s tech tip, you know how to pick ride frequencies for your racecar, and calculate the spring rate needed for the chose frequency. Now, what do you do about the anti-roll bars.

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