An understanding of the flow around a tire in contact with the ground is important for when designing a fuel efficient tire as aerodynamic drag accounts for about one third of an entire vehicle’s rolling loss [1]. Recently, non-pneumatic tires (NPTs) have drawn attention mainly due to their low rolling resistance associated with the use of low viscoelastic materials in their construction. However, an NPT’s fuel efficiency should be re-evaluated in terms of aerodynamic drag: discrete flexible spokes in an NPT may cause more aerodynamic drag, resulting in greater rolling resistance. In this study, the aerodynamic flow around an NPT in contact with the ground is investigated for i) stationary and ii) rotating cases using the Reynolds-Averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) method. The NPT has a more complex flow and a higher drag force than does the pneumatic counterpart.

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