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The Windshear 180-MPH Rolling-Road Wind Tunnel in North Carolina can handle full-sized vehicles and test them with wind speeds up to 180 mph in an environment temperature controlled to ± 1°F. The vehicles sit on a 10.5′ wide × 29.5′ long rolling “road” that is a one-millimeter thick continuous stainless steel belt. This “road” also sits on a turn table with a yaw range of ± 8°, and its belt can accelerate from 0 to 180 mph in less than 60 seconds.

As you can see from the above drawing, this is not a small facility. It occupies around 160,000 square feet, and needed approximately 20,000 tons of steel and 2,000 cubic yards of concrete to build.

The 22-foot diameter 5,100 HP main fan, shown above, recirculates 2.85 million cubic feet of air per second at the tunnel’s top speed, and uses 7MW of power in doing so. It probably also makes one helluva leaf blower…

Wind Shear, Inc. [Manufacturer's Site]

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6 Responses to It’s Just Cool: 180-MPH Rolling-Road Wind Tunnel

  1. ShopMonger says:

    The even cooler part is that Jeff Bodine has one like this and his engine and body shop let the USA national Bobsled Team use it for their wind tunnel testing and even lent some of his guys to help with the modification, and Whooolllllllaaaaaa GOLD BABY GOLD>…….

    ShopMonger

  2. Daniel says:

    Can we put an airplane in there? Please?

  3. russ says:

    Yeah, this is down the road from me. Didn’t know this one was there. I know about the A2 windtunnel. I guess they need these around here for the NASCAR circuit as they have limited or almost banned testing on tracks – to save money. Wonder what it costs to rent these? I still think putting a car on a real track is the best way but I am an old school type of person in some ways. None of the race teams appears to be griping about it, publicly that is.

  4. Will says:

    Daniel,
    You’re not really bringing the “airplane on a treadmill” topic up in here, are you? Is there no place sacred from that nonsense??

  5. Jimbo says:

    Only someone with no comprehension of the concepts involved would consider the topic “nonsense”.

  6. Dave says:

    The Tunnel used for the US bobsleds was the A2 Wind Tunnel not owned by Bodine (Gary Eaker is the owner), but was recommended by Bodine, and the US team is now using that wind tunnel to aero test. You can see pics and video at A2WT(dot)com and on youtube.

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