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Analysis of Cyclist's Drag on the Aero Position Using Numerical Simulations and Analytical Procedures: A Case Study


Forte, Pedro; Marinho, Daniel A; Nikolaidis, Pantelis T; Knechtle, Beat; Barbosa, Tiago M; Morais, Jorge E (2020). Analysis of Cyclist's Drag on the Aero Position Using Numerical Simulations and Analytical Procedures: A Case Study. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17(10):3430.

Abstract

Background: Resistance acting on a cyclist is a major concern among the cycling fraternity. Most of the testing methods require previous training or expensive equipment and time-consuming set-ups. By contrast, analytical procedures are more affordable and numerical simulations are perfect for manipulating and controlling inputs. The aim of this case study was to compare the drag of a cyclist in the aero position as measured using numerical simulation and analytical procedures.

Methods: An elite male cyclist (65 kg in mass and 1.72 m in height) volunteered to take part in this research. The cyclist was wearing his competition gear, helmet and bicycle. A three-dimensional model of the bicycle and cyclist in the aero position was obtained to run the numerical simulations. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and a set of analytical procedures were carried out to assess drag, frontal area and drag coefficient, between 1 m/s and 22 m/s, with increments of 1 m/s. The t-test paired samples and linear regression were selected to compare, correlate and assess the methods agreement.

Results: No significant differences (t = 2.826; p = 0.275) between CFD and analytical procedures were found. The linear regression showed a very high adjustment for drag (R2 = 0.995; p < 0.001). However, the drag values obtained by the analytical procedures seemed to be overestimated, even though without effect (d = 0.11).

Conclusions: These findings suggest that drag might be assessed using both a set of analytical procedures and CFD.

Abstract

Background: Resistance acting on a cyclist is a major concern among the cycling fraternity. Most of the testing methods require previous training or expensive equipment and time-consuming set-ups. By contrast, analytical procedures are more affordable and numerical simulations are perfect for manipulating and controlling inputs. The aim of this case study was to compare the drag of a cyclist in the aero position as measured using numerical simulation and analytical procedures.

Methods: An elite male cyclist (65 kg in mass and 1.72 m in height) volunteered to take part in this research. The cyclist was wearing his competition gear, helmet and bicycle. A three-dimensional model of the bicycle and cyclist in the aero position was obtained to run the numerical simulations. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and a set of analytical procedures were carried out to assess drag, frontal area and drag coefficient, between 1 m/s and 22 m/s, with increments of 1 m/s. The t-test paired samples and linear regression were selected to compare, correlate and assess the methods agreement.

Results: No significant differences (t = 2.826; p = 0.275) between CFD and analytical procedures were found. The linear regression showed a very high adjustment for drag (R2 = 0.995; p < 0.001). However, the drag values obtained by the analytical procedures seemed to be overestimated, even though without effect (d = 0.11).

Conclusions: These findings suggest that drag might be assessed using both a set of analytical procedures and CFD.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Institute of General Practice
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Scopus Subject Areas:Health Sciences > Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
Physical Sciences > Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis
Language:English
Date:14 May 2020
Deposited On:28 May 2020 15:11
Last Modified:01 Aug 2020 18:49
Publisher:MDPI Publishing
ISSN:1660-4601
OA Status:Gold
Free access at:PubMed ID. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17103430
PubMed ID:32423103

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