ABSTRACT

The variation of inflation pressure has an important effect on the mechanical characteristics of tires that can affect vehicle performance, so the influence of inflation pressure should be taken into account in high-precision tire models. Much research has focused on tire mechanical characteristics under different inflation pressures and modeling methods, such as the Improved Magic Formula/Swift Tire model developed by Schmeitz et al. that takes inflation pressure into account. Based on a large number of tire testing data under different inflation pressures, an empirical model can be obtained, but numerous tire tests are expensive and cannot reveal the mechanism. In previous studies, most tire tests were based on load control, wherein the load is constant while the footprint, carcass, and belt stiffness can change with the variation of inflation pressure, making the cornering characteristics much more complicated. Herein, a method of deflection control is used and the contact patch is well maintained. The effect of tire inflation pressure is simplified to be the change of structure stiffness and averaged contact pressure. The effect of inflation pressure on cornering properties under deflection control is systematically observed under different tire deflection values. In addition, a prediction model extended from the Magic Formula model is proposed. The model of Schmeitz et al. [1,2] needs test data from at least three inflation pressures; the model proposed herein requires tests at only two inflation pressures. The validation shows that this prediction method has good accuracy, almost the same as that of the model of Schmeitz et al. The error index of the lateral force is at most 2%, and the error index of the self-aligning torque is 4% at the maximum.

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