Mercedes Cross cut wheel rims

XCut_rim-s

There has been a lot of focus on Mercedes wheel rims since images (via SomersF1) appeared to show a hollow section inside their rear wheels. However looking up close at both Mercedes front and rear wheel rims at Monza showed a new and unique solution. All the wheels sported cross-cut pattern on the inside of the wheel and a black paint coating to this inner face of the rims. Continue reading

Ferrari Monza spec aero

Pic via Tobias Gruener

Ferrari go low drag with their Monza front wing. This new simplified wing removes the winglet cascade elements, but retains the vertical fin like elements. The wing also uses a single piece flap and the nose cone sees a return of the downforce producing chin.

Firstly the Monza spec front wing only needs to produce enough downforce to balance the low drag rear wing, thus the its size is dictated by the car’s rear aero. As much as the front wing is a downforce producing device, the cascades and fins are all about vortex generation to influence the turbulence produced by the front tyre. The wings downforce is therefore mainly reduced by the smaller single element flap (Santander logo) and less by the missing cascade winglet.

As airspeeds are so high at Monza, the cascades do not need to be as aggressive as at lower speed tracks, thus the winglet is removed, but vortices are still produced by the two vertical fins. These will trail spiralling vortices over the upper edges of the front tyre, these reduce the vortices and airflow separation that the wheel forms over the top of the tread.

Under the nose the stepped chin shape has returned, this is an efficient means of creating a little front end downforce for very little drag. Creating load via this device means the front wing can be correspondingly smaller, creating less drag and disruption to the airflow over the rear of the car.

This wing bears many resemblances to the Lotus wing which also employs similar shaped vertical fins.  with James Allison arriving at Ferrari in recent weeks, there could be the assumption that the new design is some how related to him. However such is the time it takes to design, run in CFD, wind tunnel test and manufacture aero parts (c6 weeks), this is unlikely to have had his input.

Pic via Kiril Varbanov

2014 Rules: First Look

2014_draft2

 

The latest version of the 2014 Technical Regulations have been posted on the FIA website.  Here’s my first view of how the new cars may look. I’ll post a more in depth review of the regulations, but here’s a summary:

  • Front wing reduced front 1800mm to 1650mm wide
  • Nose tip centered at 185mm high
  • Front Bulkhead maximum height 525
  • Chassis height maximum 625mm
  • Vanity panels still allowed
  • Engines now 1.6l V6 turbo, Direct injection, fuel flow limited, 15k max RPM
  • Energy Recovery systems to add +150hp from Kinetic and Turbo harvesting
  • Race Fuel limited to 100kg
  • Gearboxes to have 8 forward ratios, those ratios are fixed for the season
  • Single central exhaust pipe exiting 17-18.5cm behind rear axle line and 300-525mm high
  • Last 150mm of tail pipe must point 5 degrees upwards
  • No bodywork behind the tail pipe axis
  • No lower beam wing
  • Space still allowed for Y75 winglet (monkey seat)
  • Top rear wing a little shallower
  • Minimum weight 690Kg

2014_draft

In Detail: Silverstone 2013 Pit Lane Walkabout

Gallery

This gallery contains 43 photos.

During the midday pit lane walkabout on Friday at the 2013 British GP, a lot of technical detail can be seen.  Even through the team try to hide as much as they are allowed.  The top teams put their front … Continue reading

Video: The Racer’s Edge – Silverstone

Streamed live on Jun 27, 2013
The first of a special live double-header from the British Grand Prix at Silverstone from the Abu Dhabi/F1 Racing Fan Village near Becketts corner, where over 12,000 people are camping for the weekend. All the usual TRE guest stars will be on the panel, including Craig Scarborough (analysing the F1 tech developments since the Canadian GP), Rob Wilson (F1/GP2GP3 driver coach), Anthony Rowlinson (Editor, F1 Racing magazine) and Richard Cregan, CEO of Yas Marina Circuit and the former Toyota F1 Team Manager, and special guest Sam Bird, winner of the Monaco GP2 feature race this year and Third Driver for AMG MercedesF1. Together with Scarbs (and a Mercedes F1 steering wheel) Sam will be talking us through an F1 start procedure, right down to the smallest detail.

InDetail: Force India F-Duct

F-Duct_assy

In 2010 the key technical development was the F-Duct, a legal driver controlled system that stalled the rear wing for more top speed. During the course of the season, as more of the system was uncovered by prying cameras in the pit garages, I attempted to cover the workings of the F-Duct in several posts. But just a couple of years later I was able to buy a Force India F-Duct assembly from one of the teams licensed parts sellers. With this complete F-Duct and some background from people at the team involved with the project, we are now able to explain the solution in more detail.

Continue reading