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Renault RS27
Full details of the Formula 1
championship-winning V8

Genesis of the Red Bull The V8 engines Advanced CNC machining


How an F-duct works Flexible wings J dampers
RENAULT RS27

The best of A
fter eight seasons, Renaults RS27
is the most successful Formula 1
engine, winning four championship

the V8s
titles, and at the time of writing
having won 58 races, as well as
racking up 64 pole positions and 54 fastest
laps. And with Sebastian Vettel having just
claimed his fourth successive title, and with Red
Bull, Lotus, Caterham and Williams all using the
engine this year, those scores could increase still
further at the last two races of the year.
The engine has been in circulation during
some of the most demanding changes
in Formula 1. When the engine was first
Racecar Engineering takes a closer look at the conceived in 2004, the chase for ultimate

headaches and triumphs that came of designing revs was on, and the first engines were
designed accordingly. From there, rev limits
the most successful engine in modern F1 history were reduced, first to 19,000rpm and then
to 18,000rpm, and the specification of the
BY ANDREW COTTON engines was frozen.
Alongside those changes came the
introduction of KERS and exhaust-blown
diffusers, both of which changed the way in
which the engine was being used. At the fore-
front of it all was the Renault RS27, assembled
at Mecachrome in France.
The scale of the engine build is simply
incredible. The company has built 1,271
engines, 683 for the track and 588 for the
dyno. Between them, the engines have run
more than two million kilometres and, despite
the freeze in regulations, development has
been taking place to produce reliable engines
that have been adapted for a completely
different world of Formula 1 compared to 2006.

www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement


All of the systems and parts require a leader of the RS26. After that, we adapted By the end of the year, five variations of the
great deal of attention, care and maintenance, all the parts to create the V8, but the general engine had been introduced, including low
says Rob White, deputy managing director, shape like scavenging, oil circuit and water friction pistons, new valves, improvements to
technical, at Renaultsport. However, the circuit was all the same. the oil system, conrods and camshafts. Power
most difficult parts to maintain are always Changing to the V8 meant that vibration had increased from 680bhp to 700bhp.
the perennially stressed parts, such as the was a problem, as was cylinder head For the 2007 season, the engines were
pistons, connecting rods and bearings that reliability. The first thing was to look at the fixed in specification, and changes were
the power travels through. vibration, torsional vibration behaviour, says only allowed for issues of reliability. Midway
For example, the pistons are stressed to Taillieu. We had to choose between two through 2006, the atmosphere became very
more than 8000 times the force of gravity or three firing orders, so we made a lot of different, says Axel Plasse, project leader
(they accelerate from 1-100km/h in less than simulation around that and chose the best one for the RS27 engine. We had to face a very
1/2000th of a second). The actual weight for the reliability and the acoustic behaviour. new challenge as we learned that the engine
of a piston is only 250g, but when the engine The acoustics in a natural aspiration engine is freeze was coming. It almost felt that all the
revs to its maximum limit of 18,000rpm major for the performance. work we had done should be thrown away as
equivalent to 300 revs per second the At the time, the engine was not frozen. At we would have to use the previous engine.
acceleration exerts a force of two tonnes on the time, we had a lot of problem with pistons This completely changed our mentality I can
the piston and conrod. because we tried to increase the revs. We had remember writing to Rob White asking if we
cracks on the roof of the pistons, due to the still had jobs! There was a point where we
BEFORE THE RS27 load, which comes from the revs. The higher couldnt go backwards we couldnt put the
It was on 6 October 2004 that the first official the revs, the more the load and the more big pieces we had developed back on to the shelf
technical specification of the RS26 the stress, and then you have cracks and break as they were bespoke. We managed to push a
first Renault V8 was distributed around the the piston. We had to redesign the pistons lot of the innovations through, but it was very
Viry-Chatillon offices. The objective was to and change the materials. The number of close and the 2007 engine, which has been
design a V8 engine with a 90-degree angle references of piston was between 70-100, so used for seven seasons since, came within a
as close as possible in specification to the there were a lot of iterations. hairs-breadth of not being born.
RS25 V10, which respected the FIAs targets In March 2006, the Renault F1 team won At the beginning, we were very worried by
for mass, centre of gravity and crank centre its first race of the season, with Fernando the new regulations, says Taillieu. However,
line height. The objective was to use as many Alonso, while Giancarlo Fisichella followed we discovered that to limit the revs and
RS25 pieces as possible to minimise the risk that up with victory in Malaysia and Alonso development was interesting. The main focus
of reliability and performance. again in Australia. For the San Marino Grand was on friction between the parts. We did
The first V8 came from the last V10, and Prix in April, the team introduced the B a lot of work on the coatings between the
we designed it with the maximum technology spec of the RS26, with a new cylinder head, parts; we developed a carbon coating and the
of the V10 to help with reliability and not to insulated ports, new camshafts and enhanced lubrication system, in order to reduce the oil
imagine new things to make sure that all is exhausts. Later that year, injection was flow. The more oil you put in the engine, the
OK at the first race, says Lon Taillieu, project increased to 100bar for the French Grand Prix. more difficult it is to scavenge the engine. If

The objective was to design a V8 engine with


a 90-degree angle as close as possible in
specification to the RS25 V10

Formula 1 supplement www.racecar-engineering.com


RENAULT RS27

After 12 constructors titles, Renault returned to its core activity as an


engine supplier in 2011, supplying four teams with the RS27 during 2013

oil stays in the engine because front of the engine, but it was
you are not able to correctly not a big issue.
scavenge the oil, you increase It is more than 50bhp
friction between the moving and between the first V8 and the last
static parts. one. The change from 2007 is
We worked on the vibration between 30-40bhp.
and in all areas that we were able
to work. If you change the oil, you STANDARD ECU
reduce the friction between the The introduction of the standard
parts, and therefore you reduce McLaren ECU in 2008 again
the reliability of the parts. They provided a lot of work for
come into contact, and then you the engine department. The
have to develop a specific coating introduction automatically
to make the engine reliable again. outlawed launch control, active
When it is reliable again, you use engine braking and many other
this oil with even less friction, elaborate control algorithms. For
so you reduce the friction and the 2009 season, a new rule Engineers at work on the soon-to-be-retired Renault V8 at the
increase the power! limited each driver to a maximum Mecachrome facility in Aubigny-sur-Nre, central France
Our target was to have the of eight engines per season. The
engine at the minimum weight, engine had to be validated for directly affecting the tuning of the traditionally been our credo to
95kg, in order to give to the team life of approximately 2500km engine so the injectors, trumpets, increase the rpm as a normally
the maximum opportunity with and the rev limit reduced to inlet ports and everything to do aspirated engine will generate
ballast so for our side for us to be 18,000rpm. KERS was also with the inlet system. We changed power from rpm. For a given
at 95kg and minimum height of introduced at the same time, a lot of the reference points and torque level, if you increase the
the centre of gravity. We are not which meant that the demand on reworked a significant proportion rpm by 10 per cent you increase
able to go below this weight or the engines was different. of the engine. We have also seen the power by 10 per cent.
centre of gravity by regulation. When the FIA introduced an increase in engine life and To reverse this process and
We had a small amount of ballast the reduction in rpm in 2009, a reduction in the number of reduce to 19,000rpm and then
on the engine less than a kilo they opened Pandoras box, says engines per year. to 18,000rpm was a major sea
and we had a small possibility Plasse. We had a one-shot, intense Normally, when you drop the change and we felt that we
to change it from the back to the opportunity to change the parts rpm, you drop the bhp. It has would really lose out. However,

At the beginning, we were very worried by the new regulations


www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement
we are now six per cent more
fuel efficient, and all without
changing any parts. This gives a
major advantage as six per cent
of a total fuel load equates to
around 10kg of fuel, or between
a 0.20.4 sec gain per lap.

BLOWN DIFFUSERS
That all changed again in 2010,
as by agreement KERS was not
used, to keep costs in check.
It was, however, a time when
Renault started to experiment
with exhaust blown diffusers.
It is something that we had
undertaken in a different world
in a previous life and era, and so
we had some parts that were
turnkey and could be adapted
to the V8 relatively easily,
says White. As we started to
undertake exploratory work
with our teams, it was clear
that there was a performance
vector to work upon that was in
the system of references that
was fixed engine spec. It was
a given. Some of it came about
from work that we were doing
for reliability purposes. Initially,
we reminded ourselves about
this subject because some of the
choices that we were driven to
take for reliability purposes were
paradoxically favourable for
reliability in the measures taken
to help our chassis colleagues to
generate downforce.
There were few changes
to the hardware, although at
the time there was a clear
need for development. By
2011, almost every team was
experimenting with some form
of blown diffuser. Engine
throttles were used to control
exhaust mass flow and other
techniques used to control
engine torque delivery.
Renault have continually made performance gains without increasing bhp, for instance through retuning, When we change the
as well as working with partner Total to find improvements through fuels and lubricants pressure drop at the exhaust
of the engine, you change the
we have still managed to improve quicker, purely thanks to the improvements have been without temperature of the piston,
the horsepower and make the improvements in fuel. any increase in bhp whatsoever. says Taillieu. You increase the
car go faster! This is partly due There have also been We have radically improved performance of the car through
to the retuning at 18,000rpm, performance improvements the fuel consumption, not just the blowing and map, but after
but also due to several other thanks to the way that the engine in the improvement of the fuels that, the piston is not reliable and
important ways we worked with is installed into the car, including we use, but also in the strategy so you increase the performance
the engine. We have also worked but not limited to the now- of how we consume fuel. We of the car and the engine.
very closely with our fuel partner, famous blown exhaust, engine have got more sophisticated in With the location of the
Total, to jointly gain performance operating temperatures and how we use the engine, such exhaust exits fixed for 2012,
through fuels and lubricants. so on. This cycle of continuous as cutting cylinders in corners coanda exhausts were used to
They have greatly helped us in development, particularly in the and reducing the amount of try to drive hot exhaust gas into
improving fuel consumption and past three years, has contributed fuel used, plus using different the required area of the diffuser
reducing friction I would say to the cars being more than one engine modes at different points to maintain the downforce
we are now one to two per cent second quicker. Most of these of the race. It is fair to say advantage, but the topic had

Formula 1 supplement www.racecar-engineering.com


RENAULT RS27

largely dissipated. The engine redesign and recalculation


spec remained frozen, with only we pushed through different
reliability open to change. designs and build in 2011
Driver torque maps became and 2012 to guard against
a hot topic as engine engineers reliability concerns.
sought to get the most out of the Another large area of
engine and its maps to improve development is to the oil
overall handling. A clarification system. We have spent a large
further restricting the scope time looking at reducing the
of engine maps permitted was dissipation across the engine
published mid-season. and ensuring oil consumption
While overt development has is the same across all the
been outlawed for eight years, engines. It is basic work to
behind the scenes there has been understand the different
a dramatic improvement to the parameters and the impact on
RS27. We have largely corrected performance, but by doing this
any outstanding issues and also we can use less oil and therefore
reinforced some of the more carry less weight, therefore
fragile parts of the engine, such achieving an overall lap time
as the crankshaft, which has seen gain. Finally, in 2010 refuelling
slight changes to its architecture was outlawed, so we needed to
and how we install it into the work on fuel efficiency and how
engine, says Stephane Rodriguez, we use the engine at different
project leader for the RS27. points along the lap to improve
We have also reinforced overall race time.
the conrods to stop breakages In the final year of
and to improve the dynamics Top: RS27 exhausts put through their paces on the Renault test bench competition, the spec was frozen
of the system. However, the Above: running the rule over components at the Viry-Chtillon facility and Renault had already turned
principal updates have been to its attention towards building
the pistons, which are the most the V6 hybrid for the 2014
stressed parts of the engine.
Due to the increase in engine
When the FIA introduced the season. Renault built a new
dyno facility in Viry-Chtillon
life, these parts now have to reduction in rpm in 2009, they and in mid-October unveiled a
sustain these enormous forces new dyno at the Mecachrome
for a longer time, so through a opened Pandoras box facility where the engines are

www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement


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RENAULT RS27

first run in before transport range, so everything to do with


and final preparation takes place operating these engines over this
at the headquarters near Paris. speed range is extraordinarily
Downspeeding the engine difficult. We should never
required us to make some underestimate how good these
changes, and at the time they engines are. The torque response
were introduced there were some is instantaneous, they run clean
retuning opportunities permitted from less than 4000rpm to
in the rules, says White. Within the red line, and the drivers get
the scope of the time available grumpy if the torque is delayed
and the resources available we by a tenth of a second.
did the best possible job. We were Many people assume that
pleased that we did not suffer the engines are similar since the
significant performance drops specification has been frozen.
with either of the reductions. However they are all very different
These remain extremely high as the specs were frozen at a
revving engines and operate point in time when the V8 was
Due to increased engine life, components have to sustain forces for longer over an extremely broad speed relatively immature. The technical
regulations are strict and there
THE OUTGOING ENGINE REGULATIONS AT A GLANCE are some common characteristics
including the bore size and
ENGINE BASICS KERS may not exceed 400kJ which was replaced may not rpm limit, but there are many
Engines must be 4-stroke, in any one lap. be used during any future thousands of design decisions that
2.4-litre V8s, with a V-angle qualifying session or race are not fixed in the regulations.
of 90 degrees. TORQUE CONTROL with the exception of the last Perhaps it is not obvious
Crankshaft rotational speed The only means by which Event of the Championship. but in an unfrozen engine
must not exceed 18,000 rpm. the driver may control The engines are sealed environment there is more
Engines must be normally the engine torque is via a and identified by the FIA, opportunity to converge on
aspirated. Supercharging is single chassis mounted foot their installation in the car common solutions between the
forbidden. (accelerator) pedal. is declared and their use is engine suppliers. The engine
Minimum weight of 95kg. The accelerator pedal shaping followed by FIA technical contribution to car performance
Engines must have two inlet map in the ECU may only staff. An engine is deemed to is just as important now; even if
valves and two exhaust be linked to the type of the be used once the cars timing frozen in performance, the impact
valves per cylinder. tyres fitted to the car: one transponder shows that it has on the car remains as important
Cylinder bore diameter must map for use with dry-weather left the pit lane. as it ever has been.
not exceed 98mm. tyres and one map for use Between Events, the engine
Variable-geometry inlet with intermediate or wet- exhaust flanges are sealed in TECH SPEC
systems or exhaust systems weather tyres. so that the engines may not
are not permitted, nor are Engine control must not be be started (or dyno tested). Configuration: 2.4-litre V8
variable valve timing and influenced by clutch position,
No of cylinders: 8
variable valve-lift systems. movement or operation. ENGINE HOMOLOGATION
With the exception of electric The idle speed control target (SPORTING) No of valves: 32
fuel pumps, engine auxiliaries may not exceed 5000rpm. Under regulations introduced Displacement: 2400cc
must be mechanically for the 2007 season, only
driven direct from the ENGINE USAGE (SPORTING) homologated engines may Weight: 95kg
engine with a fixed speed Unless he drives for more be used in F1. The basis V angle: 90-degree
ratio to the crankshaft. than one team, each driver of the homologation is the
RPM: 18,000 (from 2009)
Only one fuel injector per may use no more than specification of engines used
cylinder is permitted; it must eight engines during a during the 2006 Japanese Fuel: Total
inject directly into the side or Championship season. The Grand Prix.
Oil: Total
the top of the inlet port. eight engines may be used at No fundamental changes
any race as required. have been made to the Power output: >750bhp (typical
KERS AND ENERGY Should a driver use more than engine specification since this car installation, typical temp/
pressure/humidity)
RECOVERY eight engines he will drop 10 point and no modifications
With the exception of one places on the starting grid at are permitted without the Spark plugs: semi surface discharge
fully charged KERS, the the first Event during which prior approval of the FIA
Ignition system: high energy
total amount of recoverable each additional engine is following consultation with
inductive
energy stored on the car used. If two such additional all engine suppliers.
must not exceed 300kJ. Any engines are used during Performance-enhancing Pistons: aluminium alloy
which may be recovered a single Event, the driver changes are not permitted. Engine block: aluminium alloy
at a rate greater than 2kW concerned will drop 10 grid Changes are normally
must not exceed 20kJ. places at that Event and at approved to facilitate Crankshaft: nitrided alloy steel with
tungsten alloy counterweights
The maximum power, the following Event. engine installation in
in or out, of any KERS If an engine is changed in different cars, or for reasons Connecting rods: titanium alloy
must not exceed 60kW; accordance with Article 34.1 of reliability or benign
Throttle system: 8 butterflies
energy released from the (after qualifying), the engine housekeeping.

www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement


FORMULA 1 ENGINES

The rest of the V8s


With 87 victories between them not to mention the odd failure these
engines had varied fortunes, but they all had something going for them

B
etween 2006 when had to be switched to the spec have produced a long line of race- laps in the lead, making it the
the 2.4-litre V8 engine McLaren Electronics unit. winning engines, and the FO108 most successful engine of the
formula was introduced In 2007, some minor was no exception. It is said to be modern era a statistic that Red
and 2013, seven modifications were made to very driveable in comparison to Bull and Renault may dispute.
different engines were built and the engine. The combustion some other engines. In the same season, engine
raced. The Renault RS26/RS27 chamber was revised as were The Mercedes was to score FW058-01 used by Lewis
was the most successful, but the valves, the inlet and the three race wins with one single Hamilton also became the first
some of the other six are too exhaust chambers all aimed engine: in 2009, Jenson Button hybrid-equipped powertrain in
often overlooked. at optimising the torque curve, used FW049-01 to win races Formula 1 history to win a race,
'If you put the four engines given the mandated limit of in Bahrain, Spain and Monaco. at the Hungarian Grand Prix.
currently racing alongside each 19,000rpm. For the same reason, The unit went on to be used
other and take them apart they changes were made to the piston, for Friday practice in Germany Cosworth CA
are not the same,' says Rob White the piston pin and the piston and Hungary, accumulating a Teams: Team Lotus/Lotus
of Renaultsport F1. 'They dont cooling jets to aim for the best total of 2016km. Racing, Marussia, HRT, Williams
behave the same way in the possible reliability when running It also scored two pole Wins: 0
car and there is nothing in the at the limit. positions (Spain and Monaco) and The Cosworth engine was
current regulations that says they In 2009, the max RPM was spent 72 per cent of its racing believed to be the highest
should do. It is wrong to assume further reduced, and the engine
that because each engine is of life increased. To cope with this,
relatively stable spec that they modifications were made to the
are all the same.' inlet trumpets, the position of the
injectors and the configuration of
Ferrari 056 the exhausts.
Teams: Ferrari, Toro Rosso, Ferrari's V8 engine was a title
Spyker, Sauber, Force India winner and clearly a very capable
Wins: 45 unit. It is worth remembering
Driveability was a key factor that Sebastian Vettel won his
for Ferrari when it was defining first grand prix (Italy, 2008) in a
the target characteristics for Ferrari-powered Toro Rosso.
the 056, with the regulations
requiring fixed inlet trumpets. Mercedes-Benz FO108
Engine management was initially Teams: McLaren, Mercedes,
controlled by an integrated Force India
injection and ignition system Wins: 40
from Magneti Marelli, which later Mercedes-Benz HPP in Brixworth Mercedes-Benz F0108

Ferrari 056 Cosworth CA

www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement


'Ferrari's V8 was a title winner and clearly a capable unit.
Sebastian Vettel won his first Grand Prix in a Ferrari-powered car'

revving unit in Formula 1, and Toyota power, and then in 2012 units had to run at reduced was only fitted to the works cars
according to some it was at one to Renault revs. The engine had a relatively and those of the satellite Super
point the most powerful. According to Williams small bore and a long stroke. Aguri team.
The power developed by engineers, the Cosworth unit Despite the lower revs, there
the CA was certainly more was more limited in terms were seven engine failures Toyota RVX-V8
than respectable from the outset, of mapping, and needed in races during 2006 the Teams: Toyota, Williams,
climbing to in excess of 755bhp more cooling in comparison highest failure rate of the V8 Midland
in its life, or 315bhp per litre. to the Renault. It also suffered era. We encountered seven Wins: 0
The latter specification Cosworth from higher degradation over engine failures in the course Toyota's RVX-V8 was thought to
3-litre 'TJ' V10 engines produced its engine life. of 18 grand prix weekends, all be the most reliable 2.4-litre V8,
around 915bhp (or 305bhp per of which were reciprocation- but this led some to claim that
litre) for Red Bull during the 2005 Honda RA806E related problems, explained it was too conservative and that
season, reducing to 735bhp in Teams: Honda, Super Aguri one Honda engineer. it was not as powerful as other
restricted guise for Toro Rosso Wins: 1 'Many of them were caused units. After Toyota pulled out of
during the 2006 season. Honda's V8 engine won just by the uneven quality of the F1 at the end of 2009, the engine
The engine was mandatory one single race Jenson Button parts affected by vibration in the was still available to customer
for new teams joining Formula 1 in the 2006 Hungarian Grand crankshaft area. This had never teams. None took up the option.
in 2010, but saw its greatest Prix though it could have been a problem with the V10. As
success in the back of the won many more. Its reliability a result we had to improve the BMW P86
Williams in 2006. A race win in the beginning of the V8 era quality control process. The long Teams: BMW-Sauber
at Monaco came tantalisingly was without doubt quite poor, stroke increases piston speed Wins: 1
close, before the unit failed. meaning that during the first half and that makes durability harder BMW never sold its engine to
For 2007, the teams switched to of its debut season the to achieve.' customer teams. Few technical
By 2009, the engine had details were ever released, but in
received a number of updates, 2009 it was rumoured to produce
including a new induction 810bhp which would make it
system, fuel system, cylinder the most powerful of the era
head and a new injector as (more power than the Cosworth
well as modifications to the CA). That season it was mated
structure of the pneumatic valves to super capacitor-based KERS.
to reduce friction. In addition However, it never really delivered
to increasing peak power, the the expected results and was
updates improved low- and mid- quietly dropped. BMW left the
range torque. sport at the end of the season
Curiously, Honda R&D and Sauber promptly switched to
continued to develop the engine Ferrari power.
even after the company quit the
sport at the end of the 2008 Note: this supplement went to
season. Honda never released press shortly before the 2013
its engine to customer teams it Brazilian Grand Prix weekend
Honda RA806E

Toyota RVX-V8 BMW P86

Formula 1 supplement www.racecar-engineering.com


RED BULL 2009-2013

www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement


Keeping it in
the family
Adrian Neweys recent Red Bulls have towered
over the competition. We look back with him
BY SAM COLLINS
at this trail-blazing lineage of victorious V8s
Formula 1 supplement www.racecar-engineering.com
RED BULL 2009-2013

T
he 2.4-litre V8 era there was no big regulation Sebastian Vettel in the Toro
was generally a fairly change, the concept we were Rosso STR3 Ferrari at a damp
open period which using had reached its limits, Monza in 2008 the first victory
saw cars powered by he says. So we went a new way for a Red Bull car, and Adrian
BMW, Honda, Ferrari, with the MP4/16 and MP4/17, Neweys first win since 2005
Renault win races, while Toyota but I didnt get the DNA quite
and Cosworth saw a number of right with those.
podiums. But what will almost Continuity is hugely
certainly be remembered will be important. Really, Red Bull Racing
the dominance of just one team is a team that first raced in 2005,
Red Bull Racing. and in truth that was a Jaguar
Red Bull Racing arrived in painted blue. Then it had a steep
Formula 1 in 2005, buying learning curve of developing the
the assets of the Jaguar team, culture there were quite a lot
including its staff and its Milton of new people joining, and some
Keynes base. It had a fairly people from the Jaguar days
anonymous first season, but choosing to leave. So it was a
things started to change in 2006 period of quite rapid change and
when Adrian Newey joined Red that took time to settle down,
Bull Technology, the company and to develop a way of working
that develops the cars raced by a culture and an ethos to
Red Bull Racing, and which in the develop some of the bigger
past has also looked after designs tools, be it developing the wind
for Toro Rosso. Indeed the first tunnel, developing simulation
win for a Red Bull car was at the things that you cant just go to
2008 Italian Grand Prix when Argos and buy.
the Toro Rosso STR3 (a Ferrari-
engined variant of the Red Bull DEVELOPMENT CURVE
RB4) took the flag driven by a It takes some time to develop all
young German named Sebastian those from scratch, and to learn
Vettel. It was the first win for a how to use them and how to work
Newey-designed car since 2005. with them, he adds. Once you get
It would certainly not be the last. to that stage, continuity becomes
In the last two decades, very important. People have
Neweys cars have won 10 World learned to work with each other
Constructors Championships and and its then making that an ever
11 Drivers titles. His philosophy is tighter-knit group and trying to
not one of aggressive revolutions maintain it as the team continues
in design, but rather gradual steps to grow. Its been flat for the last
in a particular direction. couple of years in numbers as a solution we could find to the big his RB7 which also featured
The way I have always tried result of the RRA, which I think is aerodynamic regulation changes, the concept Kinky Kylie. Newey,
to work is that if you can get the very good. But its an evolutionary he says. That was really the however, takes something of
concept right in the first place then thing which took us three or four biggest regulation change since a more reasoned view for the
within stable regulations I think it years to settle down into. flat bottoms came in back in 1983. layout: the pullrod suspension at
is good to evolve a car from there, In 2009 a major regulation We are always trying to maximise the rear helped to package some
says Newey. Thats what I did at change was introduced to F1 the downforce, have a reasonably of the major components lower
Williams with the FW14 through to the aerodynamic packages of broad operating window, get the down, so the design was really
the FW16. That concept stopped the cars were overhauled and weight distribution where you a combination of c of g height
at the end of 1994 when there given wider front wings and want it, have something that is and general packaging, which we
was a big regulation change. As a much narrower rear aerofoils. structurally sound, and all with felt suited the new regulations
result, the Williams FW17 was a The bodywork was de-cluttered a light c of g. Its all the obvious much better than the pushrod. It
brand new car that had nothing to as the majority of winglets were points theres no magic bullet basically allows much tidier flow
do with the FW16 due to the rule outlawed. Slick tyres were re- in it. That big regulation change to the lower beam wing.
changes. From then, the FW17 to introduced and hybrid powertrains came at a good time for us, That said, at first the concept
FW19 were very much evolutions would be allowed for the first because it coincided with the ended up being something
of each other. It was the same time in the form of KERS. point where we had started to gel of a hindrance once it became
during my time at McLaren, the Neweys response was the together as a team. clear that the loophole in
MP4/13, MP4/14 and MP4/15 Red Bull RB5 (aka Toro Rosso The rear of the car featured regulations identified by Hondas
were all very similar. STR4) the first in a family line pullrod-actuated dampers which Ross Brawn would not be closed.
Newey admits, however, that that would come to dominate hadnt been seen in F1 for As a result, the Brawn BGP001,
this approach has not always Formula 1. The RB5 of 2009 was some years, and the resulting Williams FW31 and Toyota
worked as it should. At the end the first of a new line of cars with compact and great rear end is TF109 all featured so-called
of the MP4/15, I felt that while which we came up with the best the reason why Vettel dubbed double deck diffusers, the Red

The RB5 was the first of a new line of cars with which we came up
with the best solutions to the big aero regulation changes
www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement
Bull RB5 did not and as a result
it was left with a significant
aerodynamic disadvantage.
I think with a single diffuser
car, pullrod suspension is a very
elegant solution, Newey says.
But for a double diffuser, with
the height that the diffuser then
uses, its much less clear cut. It
compromised the RB5 a little bit
by having to try and package a
double diffuser on to a car that
just wasnt designed for it. RB6,
of course, was designed for the
double diffuser, and then we
debated whether to stay with
the pullrod or not. I think we
elected to, because by then we
had some experience with it, and
were happy with how it worked
in general. But equally, had we
spotted double diffusers earlier,
we may have stayed with pushrod
for RB5 and RB6. The whole thing
with the double diffusers was
not about the regulations. It was
about Max Mosleys stand against
the teams especially Ferrari
and McLaren and we rather got
caught in the crossfire.
Once Red Bull caught up in the
diffuser race, the RB5 became
a force to be reckoned with
winning six races. Its successor,
the RB6, however, was built with
the double diffuser in mind. It also
introduced another technology
LAT

The Red Bull RB5 which gained


six wins and five poles in 17 races
was the first in a design lineage
which has gone on to dominate F1

Formula1 supplement www.racecar-engineering.com


RED BULL 2009-2013
LAT

Red Bull Racing experimented with exhaust layout throughout the car, and attempted to hide its work with stickers. They were effective for about 24 hours...

which would come to dominate F1 The 2010 car was the first the wire. Indeed, if the second the size of the fuel tank from the
aerodynamics, the blown diffuser. year where we designed it from Renault driver (Vitaly Petrov) had no refuelling regulation and what
It also had to accommodate a the outset to have a double not managed to keep Fernando impact the narrower front tyre
much larger fuel tank as in-race diffuser, he says. We got a lot out Alonso behind him, we would not would have, says Newey. The
refuelling was banned. of that concept and we were quite have taken the title. 2010 aerodynamic work started
The RB6 is an evolution aggressive with the packaging around June 2009, looking at the
of the RB5, said Newey at the of the car. It had a very long BEST OF THE BUNCH monocoque where there was a
cars launch. We tried to look at gearbox to maximise the area of There is little doubt, however, small regulation change to the
what bits we could improve, but the double diffuser. Performance- as to which car Newey thinks V-section chassis we used. The
it was more a case of looking at wise we have always had our was the strongest of the line in rest of the chassis work was
the fuel tank and the diffuser. nose ahead with this family of terms of relative performance. aerodynamic optimisation and
Last year we took the decision cars, and thats certainly true of With hindsight it is clear to see accommodating the extra 70-odd
that we were going to fit a the 2010 car. But we struggled that the 2011 championship kilos of fuel.
double diffuser to the RB5 and with a lot of reliability issues was the easiest one, he says. As was the case with the RB5
not change the gearbox, because both on our side and also on the We had a car that we were just and all of the later cars, Newey and
we didnt have the time or the engine side. There were a lot of able to always extract a bit more his team had to accommodate two
resource to do that. points thrown away as a result of performance from and that let us very different drivers the 64kg of
Obviously for the RB6 we that, and to be honest quite a few keep our nose ahead all season. Sebastian Vettel who is 174cm tall
designed the gearbox and rear errors along the way. The RB6 was described by and the larger 75kg frame of Mark
suspension to have that from We made much harder work driver Mark Webber as being like Webber, who stands at 184cm.
the outset. And like other people of the 2010 championships than you are driving a limousine due to The car has to be designed around
we were able to fit a somewhat we should have done. While we its extra size and weight a result Mark, which means that the cockpit
larger diffuser than we were able wrapped up the constructors of the larger fuel cell. has to be a bit longer than the
to in 2009. We stuck with the championship with a race to go, We initially concentrated on minimum regulation and the fuel
pullrod rear suspension having the drivers went right down to the challenges of almost doubling tank has to be moved rearwards
been on it for a year and started slightly because fuel is not allowed
to understand its strengths and
weaknesses, so we felt it was the
With the 2010 car we struggled to be stored ahead of the drivers
back, says Newey.
right way to continue.
But in hindsight, Newey feels
with a lot of reliability issues, and Once weve done that, fitting
the shorter driver in, Sebastian,
that despite being a good design, there were quite a lot of points is relatively easy. With Mark we
the RB6 may actually have been have a driver whos on the heavier
the weakest car of the family line. thrown away as a result of that end compared to Sebastian. That

www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement


Apart from a system to reduce the disruption to airflow in the
diffuser caused by the rear wheels, the RB8 was a relatively
straightforward evolution to the RB7

means he has less freedom on earlier the deception would have FIA didnt quite get the under-body great note. It did not use the fuel
weight distribution. The obvious worked for months. aerodynamic regulations right, tank volume in the monocoque
solution to that would be that That head-start in exhaust as double diffusers gave way to to accommodate the batteries.
drivers have to carry ballast on technology would give Red Bull the even more controversial hot This was a major change in
the side of their seat, but thats a clear advantage in 2011. With blown floors, where cars would concept to the RB5, which was
something that has been discussed 11 pole positions, six wins and use 100 per cent throttle 100 per the first Red Bull designed to take
and hasnt happened so far. It 383 points from 11 races it is fair cent of the time with the drivers KERS. On that car it was in the
really means that if you make the to say that the RB7 dominated the right pedal becoming little more fuel tank, so the RB7 was kind
wrong move, youre locked into it first half of the 2011 F1 season. than a torque demand switch. Most of in-between RB5 and RB6 in
for a while. Its one less variable, Due to a regulation introduced radically, this idea was exploited chassis terms, says Newey.
but its the same for everyone. for 2011 along with a new tyre by the Renault team with the front When we freed up the volume
The Red Bull RB6 was the first supplier, Pirelli, weight distribution exhaust exits seen on the R31. for fuel between RB5 and RB6,
modern F1 car to be fitted with a was something less of a headache we also changed the shape of the
blown diffuser. Designed to use for Newey and his team for the MORE KERS THAN BLESSING? monocoque alongside the fuel
the exhaust gases to seal the RB7. The weight distribution of I think some people were saying cell at the same time. Inevitably,
diffuser off from turbulent flows all 2011 cars was fixed at no less that they were hot blowing the theres always a fight between
from the base of the rotating rear than 291kg on the front axle and floors to balance their KERS out, radiator packaging and fuel
wheel, the concept first appeared 342kg on the rear, and with the which seems rather against the volume as they are fighting for
in pre-season testing. 640kg minimum weight, teams whole principle of it, says Newey. the same volume.
Red Bull was keenly aware only had a 7kg window to work KERS is meant to be a fuel-saving The re-introduction of KERS
that as soon as other engineers with. Other design limitations strategy, so to claim that you burn joined DRS as headline changes
realised that the exhausts had such as the c of g height for the excess fuel and blow the floor in for the 2011 season, but one of
been repositioned, they would engine also further reduced some order to offset the influence of the critical issues for the teams
soon be on to the concept, so it of the design choices available. the KERS and achieve a neutral was the arrival of Pirelli as the
tried to camouflage the layout But the big change in the brake balance seems rather sole tyre supplier to F1. With the
in a fascinating way. Stickers rules went directly in Red Bull and against the whole intent of green RB7 proving to be the fastest
with the image of exhaust Neweys favour a ban on double technology. The way we were car in qualifying and winning the
exits were placed on the rear diffusers. This allowed the team to using the exhaust, the effect on most races, it could be said that
bodywork of the RB6 exactly finally reap the full benefit of its KERS would be very small. Red Bull got the best out of them,
where the exhausts used to be pullrod rear suspension. It will likely The RB7 was the first Red but Newey is not so sure. Ferrari
positioned. But the real exits had be said in years to come that the Bull to fully exploit KERS to any seemed to be pretty kind on their
been moved to the now familiar tyres, arguably kinder than us, he
position on the floor of the car.
The deception worked for 24
Red Bull camouflaged the new says. Its not as simple as having
a good tyre model, then you
hours it was one of the first
demonstrations of the power of
layout during testing by placing understand the tyre. That might
allow you to understand it, but it
the internet in F1 with thousands stickers of exhaust exits on the rear wont necessarily mean you can
of pairs of eyes studying each get good performance. In truth, I
car for upgrades. Just a few years bodywork, where they used to be think our pace was down to the

Formula 1 supplement www.racecar-engineering.com


RED BULL 2009-2013

WRI2
The RB7 rear wings and suspension during an early view of the all-conquering car at testing, Circuit de Catalunya, Spain in 2011

overall car. I like to think that if pack with in the last couple of cut in downforce in losing that combined hugely reduced the
we were on Bridgestones, our years. That led to a big rethink exhaust technology. We have exhaust effect, but did not reduce
performance relative to the others over the winter. We designed the certainly suffered more than it to zero. Compared to the other
would be probably fairly similar RB7 around that exhaust position, our competitors in terms of the teams, there are obviously two
to where we were on Pirellis. In and were probably the only exhausts. We were the first to ways of skinning the cat in terms
other words, I dont think that the people to do so other than Lotus. do it in 2010, so we were on of getting the most out of the
change from Bridgestone to Pirelli Regulation restrictions that track for two years and had exhaust given the limitations in
particularly caused a change in like the lost exhaust are a probably taken it further than the regulations. The concepts
the competitive order. bit frustrating, because they other people. It was difficult to used were different in the
In 2012, however, the Pirelli are precisely that: restrictions. get the car to work properly with philosophy and the way in which
tyres were a dominant factor and Theyre not presenting new it missing we really had to go they achieve the effect.
did indeed cause a change in the opportunities or revenues back and re-learn the baseline. Despite the change, the RB8
competitive order, with Williams particularly, theyre just closing was still just an evolution of the
winning its first race for many doors. I enjoy regulation changes, EXHAUST AVENUE RB7, and a continuation of the
years as a result. The resurgence but I always rather lament The RB8 was launched with a family line. Generally speaking, if
of the Honda/Brawn team now regulation restrictions. fairly conventional solution, but a car is an evolution which the
in the guise of Mercedes also As a result of those after initial testing, it was fitted RB8 was its kind of a gradual
made Neweys job harder. On top restrictions we had to go back with a Sauber-style solution, process, says Newey. The
of this, off-throttle blowing was and look at how we developed which differs from the Coanda knowledge from the development
banned Renault had admitted the car. Probably one of the key layout but achieves the same of the RB7 was constantly fed
that it increased fuel consumption things there was the rear ride goal, reducing the disruption to into RB8. You have to get the
by up to 10 per cent at a time height. The exhaust allowed us to air flow in the diffuser caused big bits out of the way, though,
when the sports environmental run a high rear ride height, but it by the rear wheels. to hit the timescales, and the
credibility was under stiff scrutiny. was much more difficult without It was a combination of two longest lead items on the RB8
It was a difficult task to stay it to sustain a high rear height, things that hit at one time, says were the chassis and gear case
where we were, says Newey. We so we had to go back down and Newey. One was the restriction as well as the internals. The
lost the exhaust technology with redevelop the car around that on where we could physically initial research centred on what
the restriction on exhaust outlet lower ride height. put the exhaust exits, and the was needed for those long-lead
position, that wed otherwise With the RB8 it was about other was the restriction on the time items and it then progressed
have perhaps been ahead of the damage limitation from the mapping of the engine. Those on from there.

Regulation restrictions dont present new opportunies they close


doors. I enjoy regulation changes, but I rather lament restrictions
www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement
RED BULL 2009-2013

WRI2
The Renault RS27 V8, which powered the Red Bull RB7 to an impressive 12 wins from 19 races during the 2011 season

Red Bull supplied one of BLOWING THE NUTS different. The changes there
those long-lead time items its were very small. In 2012 we

E
transmission to a customer arly in the 2013 season, some small aerodynamic gains, introduced a very high wishbone
team, Caterham. On the RB8 the RB9 tested with an Adrian Newey explains. It was with the driveshaft passing
the layout is little changed from interesting wheel nut trying to do what we had when through the middle of it which
the RB7 and the unit found in layout there was a hole in the we had the wheel covers in the brought an aerodynamic benefit
the CT-01 and CT-03 (The Lotus centre of the nut passing right past. The way we did it last and thats been widely copied
T128 used the RB5 gearbox). though the hub. These became year was declared illegal during by others in 2013. That was quite
With the gearbox, everybody cheekily known as blown nuts the season, at Montreal. The a decent step, but its the usual
now has instant shift, which and were also trialled by the solution that ourselves and problem in Formula 1 everyone
means that youre engaging the Williams team. At the time their Williams then experimented sees it and copies it.
new gear before you come out purpose was not disclosed, with at the start of this year It is worth noting here that
of the old gear, and youre using though some speculated that was much the same thing, but the RB8 pushed the regulation
the backlash to get out of the they were for brake cooling. done in a way that was legal. hard in a couple of areas, resulting
original gear before you have the Last year we had a duct Overall, however, we did not in two high-profile issues with
two gears fighting against each through the wheel which gave find a big benefit to doing it. the FIA. First the team was forced
other, says Newey. to change the design of the
After that it is just reliability rear floor of the car. A new floor
and packaging. On the RB8 the used at the Spanish Grand Prix
gearbox internals were the same and the Monaco Grand Prix
as on the RB7, and quite a few featured a small cutout ahead
of the assemblies carried over of the rear wheel, but this was
too. Wheel bearings, pedals and questioned by rival teams who
that sort of thing were all the argued that it did not conform
same, so we only changed parts with the technical regulations.
where there was a reason to do These state: All parts lying on
so. Between RB8 and RB9 there the reference and step planes,
was virtually nothing new about in addition to the transition
the transmission. The internals between the two planes, must
WRI2

are as near-as-damn-it identical, produce uniform, solid, hard,


although the casing was slightly continuous, rigid (no degree

www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement


RED BULL 2009-2013

The RB8 wasnt as dominant as its


immediate predecessor, but it still
bagged seven wins and eight poles
from 20 races, again taking both
the drivers and constructors titles

of freedom in relation to the Another run-in with the FIA mid-RPM range than previously Red Bull was doing. Nonetheless,
body/chassis unit), impervious technical department took place seen at other events. In my Bauer referred the matter to the
surfaces under all circumstances. at the German Grand Prix. This opinion this is therefore in breach event stewards.
Forward of a line 450mm forward time it centred on the torque map of the technical regulations as the Three hours after Bauers
of the rear face of the cockpit loaded on to the cars McLaren engines... Furthermore, this new report was released, the FIA
entry template, fully enclosed ECU. The FIAs technical delegate, torque map will artificially alter stewards of the meeting
holes are permitted in the Jo Bauer, discovered the code the aerodynamic characteristics announced that no further action
surfaces lying on the reference ahead of the German Grand of both cars which is also in would be taken. Their statement
and step planes provided no part Prix and issued the following contravention of technical read: The stewards received a
of the car is visible through them statement: Having examined directives. The mid-range torque report from the FIA technical
when viewed from directly below. the engine base torque map, map is critical in optimising the delegate, along with specific
To circumvent this, other it became apparent that the cars exhaust gas flow to get a ECU data from Red Bull Racing
teams such as Ferrari used maximum torque output of both blown diffuser effect, though it Cars 1 and 2.
a tiny slit between the hole engines is significantly less in the was not clear that this was what The stewards met with the
and the outer edge of the floor, team representatives and the
meaning that the hole is not
fully enclosed. The FIA technical
Wed think we had a handle on the representative of the engine
supplier Renault. While the
department said that in its
opinion the floor did not meet the
2012 tyres, but then something stewards do not accept all the
arguments of the team, they
rules as it interpreted them, and would happen to make us realise we however conclude that as the
for the next race in Canada, Red regulation is written, the map
Bull changed the design. hadnt properly understood them presented does not breach the

www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement


KERS: RED BULLS ACHILLES HEEL

I
f the Red Bull RB5-RB9 family But most of the other problems
line does have an Achilles have been I think more than
heel, it must be its energy anything simply our lack of
recovery systems, as team radio experience in that area.
transmissions during races This is one of the key areas
regularly reveal system failures in the design of the RB6-9.
something that by 2013 was Placing the lithium chemistry
almost unique to the team. cells thought to be supplied
At the root of the problem is by SAFT at the rear means
the fact that we tried to develop the car has some significant
the KERS package ourselves, differences to its rivals. The
says Adrian Newey. Its based on teams package is still largely
the Magneti Marelli system that based on the Magneti Marelli
Renault used in 2009 and which system which first appeared in
we briefly tested on the RB5 2009, with some components
pre-season before electing not similar or identical to those
to race it. Since then, everybody used by Ferrari. The unraced
has gone off in different Peugeot 908 Hybrid4 LMP1
directions with that system as a is also thought to share some
basis, including ourselves. components with this system.
Developing KERS just isnt
our strength. We are mechanical TRICK MISSED
engineers, aerodynamicists and In hindsight we missed a trick
vehicle dynamicists not KERS by not properly developing KERS
specialists. Part of the problem in 2009, admits Newey. The
is that we have chosen quite potential was always there, but
aggressive packaging, putting in 2009 we were not mature
the batteries alongside the bell- enough as a team to take on
housing at the back of the car, that challenge. You could argue
which weve felt was good for that between then and now in
the overall package of the car. 2013 we have gained 0.4 secs
Everybody else now has from KERS. The rest has been
the batteries at the base of the usual aero developments.
the fuel tank. Its fair to say that we
From a packaging point of always struggled at high track
view, we felt that ours was a temperatures. Having the
better route. We knew there batteries where they are brings
would be heat issues with our weight distribution benefits in
placement of the batteries as it terms of the car overall as we
is a fairly hostile environment, have shifted that mass rearwards
and heat management has but thermally it is not where
been a little bit of a problem. you would choose to put them.
text of the Formula 1 technical regulations were introduced. The
regulations and therefore decided cars were converging and the grid
to take no action. was getting tighter. Despite this, Newey admits time among our engineers than
Drivers of rival teams felt that So, if you are a tenth that the 2012 Pirelli tyres were we would have done previously,
the RB8 had more downforce, but or two tenths a second slower, more challenging than expected. or we would have done with a
transmitting that downforce to it might be a few grid places The tyres were very difficult to Bridgestone or a Michelin.
the track was just as important in dropped, whereas the previous understand, he said. Sometimes If you compare them to
2012. Indeed, one of the biggest year it might have made no we thought we had got a handle say the height of the tyre
talking points of the 2012 difference at all. It all put tyres on them, but then something war between Michelin and
season was the tyres, the impact into a bigger focus and quite would happen that made us Bridgestone, then you got to
of which Newey felt has been often when you get these big realise that weve not properly the point where the race was
somewhat overplayed. swings between grid results understood them. really a series of qualifying laps
Everybody talks like the between the teams, tyres are and the drivers would therefore
tyres have become so much singled out as being the reason. REVERSE ENGINEERING push very hard throughout
more critical in 2012 compared to But thats a bit too simplified Effectively we were trying to without worrying too much about
the previous year, he says. I think in truth. Some cars will be better reverse engineer someone elses degradation, be it thermal or wear.
they were trickier to use in high speed corners and not product, so it was and still is Thats different now. I think that
generally, but equally the grid so good in low speed corners. tricky and this is the same for brings a different set of skills to
closed up again and that was Some cars may be better on all of the teams. Inside our own the floor, almost like Prost in the
partly due to regulations being bumpy circuits, but tyres are team we did not highlight anyone 80s, when he got the reputation
restrictive and 2012 being the visible feature that people purely as a tyre specialist. But its for being The Professor, thinking
the fourth season since those just latch on to. fair to say that we dedicated more about how he did the race. I think

Formula 1 supplement www.racecar-engineering.com


RED BULL 2009-2013

THE ANACHRONISTIC ADRIAN NEWEY

W
hile every other car on manufacturing use computer- very late-70s or early-80s was
the grid between 2009 controlled machinery. The team becoming the major performance
and 2013 started out have got used to me now. differentiator between the
with a click of a CAD screen, the While Newey still relies cars. So it makes sense for the
Red Bulls all started life as a on paper and French curves, aerodynamic side to lead the
hand-drawn design on a piece of the rest of his engineers use overall design of the car in terms
paper in Adrian Neweys office advanced digital tools to of packaging. All the cars that Ive
in Milton Keynes, England. develop concepts. The team been in charge of, dating back to
Whether you use a CAD has a partnership with Siemens, the IndyCars of the mid-80s, have
system or a drawing board, and uses its NX software. It been designed to that ethos.
ultimately its a way of taking also utilises Teamcenter PLM to This does not mean that
thoughts from in your head, ensure accuracy and consistency aerodynamics always take
priority, of course. Newey takes
a pragmatic view to handling the
engineering trade-offs. We have
sufficient research and simulation
tools that we should be able
to answer questions. So for
instance, if theres a compromise
to be made between weight or
stiffness which are the usual
things then we should be able
to input numbers and let them
speak for themselves.
But Newey is perhaps of the
old school of racecar designers,
as he loathes the level of
restrictions found in the F1
technical regulations so much
so that he has more than once
putting them into a medium, of models and bills of material. considered a career change to
developing them in that medium Its the system that the guys the world of the Americas Cup.
and then communicating it here all felt comfortable using, I rather lament it. All of those
with others, explains Newey. adds Newey. We benchmarked changes of the concept from
Its almost like a language, various systems in terms RB5 to RB9 are always due to a pitch connection which can give
and what system you use is of overall performance and regulation restrictions. Ultimately some benefits in ride.
personal preference. But it is fair flexibility and how we wanted if the regulations become tighter There is some speculation
to say we couldnt realistically to use it, and found that it was and tighter then you end up with that the RB9 is also fitted with a
cope with many people in the the one most suited to us. F1 becoming GP1. All the cars system that links the suspension
company using drawing boards! Neweys design methodology will converge to become more diagonally, but Newey would not
Once Ive done my paper is primarily aerodynamic, or less the same and I think that be drawn on this.
drawings, they then have to something most teams now would be a great shame for the Throughout the car there are
be scanned, and then theres imitate. Its the way Ive always sport. For me, what differentiates many detail changes from the
a team of two or three people operated, pretty much from the F1 from tennis or golf is the fact RB8, but one of the most notable
that have to take those start of my career, he says. I that it is a combination of man lies at the front of the car. A minor
drawings and turn them into graduated as an aeronautical and machine, and to win either rule change relating to the height
solid surface models. Nowadays, engineer, which means not simply the drivers or constructors titles of the nose at the start of the
a drawing itself is of no use aerodynamics. Aerodynamics you need a combination of good 2012 season saw all of the cars
to anybody. Whether youre was one of the subjects that one driver and good car. feature a rather ugly hump. Red
evaluating it in CFD or in a wind takes on the course, but so are If the regulations mean that Bull uniquely fitted a slot in the
tunnel, the manufacturing is structures, controls and so on. the cars are all more of less nose which it initially claimed
in the electronic world. The It seemed quite apparent to me the same, it would reduce the was for driver cooling, but later
wind tunnel model and the that aerodynamics from the attraction of the sport. admitted to using for cooling
some internal components. It also
seemed to have an aerodynamic
thats coming back, which gives as many admiring glances RB9 retains its front torsion bars, function as it was linked to a
some variety and change in the from rivals. It was once again though they are not visible when second slot under the nose. A rule
field both race-to-race, during an evolution of the previous the bulkhead is inspected. change would have allowed Red
the race and qualifying to race. years cars but featured some The torsion bars are still Bull to fit a non-structural panel in
I think thats all good for the sport interesting details. At some point fitted, but are a bit more recessed this area, but Newey and his team
certainly good for spectating. in the family line, interlinked in the bulkhead than on previous decided against that approach.
The RB8 was followed up suspension was introduced. cars, he says. We have had front- We do have the vanity panel
by the RB9 a car that courted Unlike some cars with such to-rear interlinked suspension on on there, but it does not stretch
no less controversy and just systems, Newey claims that the the car for quite a few years its the whole way to the front of the

www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement


At the time of writing, the RB9 had
garnered 11 wins from 17 races,
with nine pole positions and 10
fastest laps. Sebastian Vettel won
the drivers championship with
three races of the season left

nose as the weight of it would be strong as many expected that it effectively changing the toe the constructors championship.
too high for that, he explains. But would be. Then, after the spate of the tyres. In reality the main But with the resource restriction
we have dropped the letterbox of failures at Silverstone during benefit was wear management. agreement in force, the engineers
vent which cooled the driver and the British Grand Prix, the Italian In qualifying you take a lot out of at Red Bull had to not only ensure
some electronic systems. company was forced to essentially the tyres you are driving them that the RB9s development rate
With the letterbox vent revert to its 2012 tyres. Perhaps as hard as you can and slip can be allowed it to keep its nose ahead,
dropped on the RB9, the same as a result of this, the RB9 seemed quite high. On the very heavily but also make sure that they did
solution found on both the 2012 to make a significant step forward handed circuits you take a lot out not fall behind on development
and 2013 Saubers was employed, in pace. However, the mid-season of the left-hand side of the car of the RB10.
which featured a vent facing the tyre change also saw a practice typically, so by swapping them for We are having difficulty
driver. It is also linked to a slot used by a number of teams the race you get some benefit. balancing the 2014 development
under the nose. including Red Bull outlawed. Cars with the 2013 car, Newey
McLarens Matt Morris who were regularly seen on track with IN CHARGE AGAIN admitted, we are dealing with
oversaw its introduction when he the right rear tyre fitted to the left As the European season came it as best we can. The people
was technical director explains rear and vice-versa. to a close at Monza in Italy, the working on the long-lead time
that its concept is really very The 2013 tyre construction RB9 was like its predecessors parts like monocoque and gearbox
simple. Everybody is interested had ply steel built into it which dominant. Drivers from Mercedes, are exclusively working on 2014
in it, but it is something that is a way of changing the toe Ferrari and Lotus soon all admitted now, and at the same time there
is not actually worth much without changing the toe, says that they could not catch Vettel is a small team of people working
performance, he says. When Newey. Its nothing especially in his RB9, and Red Bull headed full-time on this years car.
you look at the hump it is clearly magical by swapping the into the flyaway races with a Its possible that there may be
not the best dynamic device on tyre from side to side you are seemingly unassailable lead in some small carry-over from RB9
the planet, so we just used it to to RB10, but with the size of the
improve the flow in that area.
One area where every team
By swapping tyres from side to changes its not very much.
The arrival of the RB10 early
has struggled to some extent in
the last two seasons is the tyres,
side you are effectively changing in 2014 will draw to a close one
of the most successful lines of
With the original generation of the toe of the tyres so this was grand prix cars ever but it could
Pirellis used at the start of the also mark the start of another
season, the RB9 was often not as good for wear management equally strong lineage.

Formula 1 supplement www.racecar-engineering.com


RED BULL TECH DISCUSSION

Is Red Bull Racing using KERS


to enhance mechanical traction?

R
ed Bull has dominated same top speed or the same that gives them a consistent 2. If torque were to be
the F1 drivers and downforce with less drag and advantage? In other words, modulated so that the
constructors championship superior top speed. They dont what would give them such an maximum traction is exceeded
since 2010. This is often put 7. They are apparently able advantage and still be consistent for only a very small rotation
down to more efficient downforce to take advantage of what with all the above? of the tyre and then relaxed
generation, but David J Dodge appears to be high downforce/ The most important clue is to re-establish a new bond to
believes that the cars advantage high drag setups, while other their KERS problems. What could the pavement, then pushed
is down to a clever way to teams are not able to do so they be doing to make it so over the limit again, some
improve traction. He starts with a 8. Other teams are not stupid. If difficult in comparison to other additional thermal potential
few facts and observations: sacrificing top end speed for teams? It must bring a significant of the tyre could be taken
more downforce reduced lap advantage, or they wouldnt advantage of and lateral
1. RBR cars are consistently the times, they would all be doing bother with the complexity. grip would be more stable.
slowest of the top and mid- it. Does RBR really have a So here we go! It is This would yield better mid-
field teams in speed traps higher downforce setup? theoretically easy to modulate turn grip, stability and speed
2. RBR cars can consistently do 9. Superior aero does not the output torque and charging 3. When the threshold of
the fastest lap times (they seem to explain RBR input torque to an electric motor/ maximum traction is near,
have most pole positions) dominance. Superior generator using capacitors, the modulation of torque
3. RBR has a higher average mechanical traction does batteries, inductors and a and the consequent slip-
speed down long straights, 10.RBR has had consistent feedback signal. Torque changes catch would give the driver
despite having a ~10kph problems with their KERS are instant and control is easy. feedback on impending loss
slower top end. They cannot 11.No other team has had KERS Here are a few things that RBR of grip. (Note: this may be a
be caught by faster cars problems since the first year could be doing with a more violation of the rules.) This
4. In order to have a higher 12.RBR is very technically sophisticated KERS: could yield fewer driver
average and lower top speed competent, so why cant mistakes and allow them to
they must: they solve a problem that 1. If torque were to be modulated stay closer to the limit
a) have better traction everyone else has solved? in response to the normal force 4. Charging input torque could
out of the turns 13.They must be doing something of the tyres against the track also be modulated to enhance
b) better traction into different with their KERS (in response to shock pressure, rear wheel traction during
the turns 14.They dont appear to be using for example) significant unused braking. This could yield
c) better traction KERS on the straights (low top traction potential could be more effective rear braking,
though the corners end speed). They do appear to recovered during high pressure and delay the onset of
d) or all three be using it at turn exits phases (upside of bumps) and rear wheel lock-up
5. RBRs superiority is often 15.The mysterious stuttering initiation of full wheel spin 5. This does not appear to
attributed to the superior rubber marks on the exit of the during low pressure phases violate any rules (except for
aerodynamic downforce Adrian Montreal hairpin may be a clue (downside of bumps) could be No 3 above). It is traction
Newey is able to engineer delayed. This would yield better enhancement, not traction
6. If they had superior aero, they In light of these facts and turn exit acceleration, higher control. Almost everything an
would have more downforce observations, what could RBR cornering speeds and stability, F1 team normally and legally
with the same drag and the be doing that others are not, especially on bumpy tracks does is to enhance traction

Mark Webbers RB9 at the ADRIAN NEWEY RESPONDS


Nrburgring in July 2013 Racecar highlighted the
points raised here with Newey
who seemed a little cagey
about it all, though he hinted
that while the RB5-RB9 line
does indeed seem to have
low end of straight speed,
and relatively high mid-straight
speed, this is not down to the
usage of KERS.
I doubt the gain is from
KERS, he says. We, like everyone,
do work on how to best deploy it,
but I think everyone is similar in
how they use it. Is our traction
better than others? I think it
depends on the particular corner
LAT

leading on to the straight.

www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement


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TECHNOLOGY CGTECH

A winning formula
Freeform Technology uses CGTech's VERICUT,
the world's most advanced independent CNC tool
simulation and optimisation software, to provide
peace of mind and a safety net for its machines

E
stablished in 2008, the more reasonable and we flew
majority of Buckingham- out to their factory in Milan, Italy.
based Freeform We were very impressed with
Technologys work is the company so we came back
connected to the motorsport to get the finance in place, bit
industry. This might be expected the bullet and re-mortgaged the
as its co-directors knew each house just at the start of the
other when they both worked global recession.
at Red Bull Racing. Company 'Fortunately for us, Red Bull
director Simon Burchett, explains: did help us out with work and
'At least 80 per cent of our free-issued material. We have
work is F1, and then theres found that like Red Bull, many of
the non-F1 side of it thats still the F1 teams we have worked for
motorsport. The balance is made are very mature and supportive.
up of subcontracts and composite They really appreciate a supplier
companies that need additional that does good work and they
capacity or pattern machining. dont want to lose them, so theyll
Many have their own pattern do what they need to do to make
shops, so we act as an overflow sure you keep going.'
capacity for them.' The new CMS machine came
Having decided to form a with a warranty of 3000 hours
subcontract engineering company, or 12 months, whichever came
the directors were well aware first and not many businesses
that while the metal-working hit that in the first year. Freeform
side offers huge opportunities, clocked it up within nine months
there were also many companies due to the fact that it had to keep
who wanted to do it, making it it constantly running. 'It was our
a ruthless industry sector with only machine, our only source of
high start-up costs. Subsequently income. We were working from Jake Oliveira, CAM programmer, applied VERICUT NC simulation
the decision was made to focus 6am until midnight, and if at to the companys 5-axis DMG machining centre
on producing patterns and any point in the first year that
moulds for the ever-increasing machine went down, we would process, so to not have it was offered by the software. Other
composite components market. have gone bust,' says Burchett. stressful to say the least. As small companies see it as a
The Red Bull pattern shop had Having used VERICUT at soon as we could afford it, we massive overhead we see it as
three Breton machining centres. Red Bull, both partners were invested in the software because an essential tool of cost-cutting
'The first thing we did was go to keen to invest in the simulation it is not just for big businesses. and survival in the long run.'
the company that supplies them and optimisation software. With only one machine, you have Every one of the 13 staff
to work something out,' Burchett 'We could not afford it until the to protect it. If it goes down, you at Freeform will push the start
recalls. 'However, the finance second year,' says Burchett, 'and are effectively unable to work, button, go home and be confident
package was beyond us at the going home at night leaving and when the machine breaks it to let the NC program run until
time, so that was a non-starter. the machine running wondering cost so much to fix. After a major the end of the machining cycle.
We looked at second-hand what you would return to in the breakdown you think with that 'And,' adds Burchett, 'the quality
machines, but nothing suitable morning was quite worrying. money I could have had VERICUT. of work we provide would be
was available, so we approached 'We always had VERICUT at We felt it was a false economy affected by a machine tool that
CMS Industries. The price seemed Red Bull, as it was part of the not to have the level of protection had suffered a crash, because the

'There is no point cutting a piece of material for three or four hours


for it to be wrong, because the cost of doing that is considerable'
www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement
ADVERTISEMENT FEATURE

accuracy of the machine will confidence in NX and 100 per


be affected. So as soon as we cent confidence in VERICUT,
could get VERICUT there really so its almost like an additional
was no hesitation.' safety net for us. Our staff are
After turning over a modest also confident, which allows them
profit in the first year, the to do one job, leave it and then
company purchased another setup their next job.'
machine tool and started to Freeform prides itself on
employ highly skilled staff. the fact that it has earned a
Although the company was good reputation for delivering
tight on floorspace, a project for quality, and has never delivered
Renault F1 (Lotus F1) for brake anything late. 'We have
ducting components required admittedly stretched the day.
around 18 patterns. This made most people would say the
the investment crucial. The working day ends at five, wed
tolerances were very tight say midnight, says Burchett.
because any air leak would reduce 'Even if theres just a slight
efficiency. A new DMG machining change to the tool path, nothing
centre was purchased to meet goes on the machine tools
the project demands, and to also unless it has been run through
provide the ability to machine VERICUT first purely and simply
metallic components. Today the Every NC program has to pass through VERICUT to ensure the safety of because it is safe.
company operates three CMS the machine tools. VERICUT supports Freeform Technologys production 'As soon as we got VERICUT,
machines as well as two DMG of complex moulds and composite patterns for the motorsport sector we could programme to run
machining centres. through the night, knowing we
Native Siemens NX 3D CAD a problem paying for it. We minute lapse of concentration could leave the machine running
models are supplied by most see it as a working overhead that leads to a mistake can effect for the extra hours and it would
customers. 'Weve had VERICUT it is a key investment as far as a week of work. It becomes be safe. Sometimes we come
for just over three years and its were concerned, having a counter-productive. Staff then in the morning and the machine
performance is always robust,' machine that is smashed up have to work longer hours and is still running. If we didnt
says Burchett. 'Its always been and unable to make the parts get tired, the morale drops and have VERICUT, there is the
what you think its going to be accurately is a liability. the standard of work declines.' chance you are going to come
very accurate and its not going 'There is no point cutting a For Freeform, VERICUT in, the machine has mangled
to throw up any sort of spurious piece of material for three or simulation and optimisation the part which cost thousands,
mistakes. Using the latest version four hours for it to be wrong software is as important as the job's not done, your
of VERICUT weve noticed the because the cost of doing that is its CAM package. 'Weve got to customer is not happy, you're
difference in verification speed, considerable. Its not just the cost have faith in our CAM package,' not getting paid, the machine
it has been reduced considerably of remaking the part, it's the cost says Burchett. 'When we do a is broken and is going to cost
and we can leave it run overnight.' of not being able to do another tool path its not going to gouge to repair. So for us, not having
Four staff at Freeform carry job while you are waiting for that the part for some random VERICUT was not an option and
out programming and verifying one to be finished again. Our reason as we apply complex tool also we can sleep at night.'
tasks, but the company is looking objective is to make sure what paths. We have 100 per cent
to train more people because goes on the machine comes off
at busy times it can become a right the first time. Mistakes
bottleneck. 'Having four people upset the customer, ruin your
programming with two VERICUT machine and business, and a five
licences is never going to be that
easy,' says Burchett. 'We will need
another licence, but I dont have

Formula 1 supplement www.racecar-engineering.com


FORMULA 1 NEW TEAMS

Revolving doors
They came, they saw, and some stayed. A look back on
the recent arrivals and departures from the Formula 1 grid

T
he V8 era has seen a expenditure that the team could the funding was available and claim the drivers title at the end
number of teams come demonstrate has no influence on I believe that we would have of the year.
and go as initiatives its performance, and dividends. produced a very competitive car. In 2009, Mercedes acquired a
were introduced to The plan did not meet with 75.1 per cent stake in the team,
limit the spending the success that the FIA had MORPHING TEAMS renamed it Mercedes GP, and
which encouraged new entries, hoped for. Lola was one of the The V8 era began without the went on to achieve such heights
although there were some that companies that bid for entry to high spending BAR team, which as setting eight pole positions
fell by the wayside as the cost cap the F1 World Championship in went west along with Jordan and in nine races during the 2013
was raised in 2010. 2009. The company was not Minardi as the new engine formula season, a feat that earned them
Under FIA president Max awarded the entry, to the fury was brought in. Paul Stoddart ran the cover of the current issue of
Mosley, an initiative was of company director Martin the team for five years, before he Racecar (V24N1).
introduced in 2009 to limit team Birrane, who later committed his sold it to Red Bull in 2005, and BMWs involvement in F1 was
spending to 30m per year. comments to print in Racecar the drinks company started the not the long-term future that the
Teams signing up for the optional Engineering, V22 N11. Lolas Toro Rosso team that competes German manufacturer had hoped
cap would do so in exchange Formula 1 bid was a positive today. Jordan was sold to the for. The team acquired a stake in
for greater technical freedom, project for Lola Cars International, Midland Group early in 2005 Peter Saubers outfit in 2006, but
including constantly adjustable he said. I personally funded the and the Group continued the sold it back to its Swiss founder
wings, engines with no rev limit, whole programme through Lola F1 name Jordan until 2005, when it in 2009. The team won just one
a more powerful KERS system Team Limited, and we were ahead changed to MF1 racing, and then race Robert Kubica in Canada
and, in theory, four-wheel drive of all of the competition having Spyker in 2007. That outfit was 2008, before the results tailed off
should they choose it. Teams assembled the key personnel then sold again, becoming Force towards the end of the season.
would also be allowed unlimited and provided the engineering India in 2008.
out-of-season track testing with services, materials and wind Honda first acquired a stake HRT
no restrictions on the scale and tunnel facilities to proceed. We in BAR, and then took 100 per The Hispania Racing Team was
speed of wind tunnel testing. The had a wind tunnel model with cent control until a dramatic one of the few that entered
minimum weight of cars was also the basic external shape defined, announcement arrived, in the the championship under the
introduced, moving from 605kg and we completed over 90 data winter of 2008, that the team cost cap formula. It began as a
to 620kg to offset those running runs in the tunnel. History shows would no longer continue. Team collaboration between Adrin
KERS, and new for 2010 was also that of the three teams chosen, principal Ross Brawn, with
a ban on refuelling, designed to two were uncompetitive and have dedication from a slimmed-down
reduce travel and staff costs. since been sold, and one never team, continued with the car,
Excluded from the cost appeared. I very much regret not which featured a double rear
cap were driver salaries, fines being awarded a licence because diffuser and dominated the
or penalties imposed by the I know with absolute certainty early part of the 2009 season,
FIA, 2010 engine costs, any that had we been awarded one, enough for Jenson Button to

www.racecar-engineering.com Advaanced Engineering supplement


Campos, who ran a successful there from 1997, and base the
team in lower formulae, and budget around that. In 1992,
Enrique Rodrguez. The team Williams developed the FW14
gained funding through high- with a workforce of 180 people
profile shareholders, and aimed to and a budget of 30m.
become the first Spanish team to The car was due to be built
enter the championship in 2009. with a Cosworth engine, EMCO
The management of the team was gearbox which allowed for very
in Madrid, the technical facility at tight packaging, JRI dampers
Camposs workshop in Valencia, at the front, standard at first
while in 2009 there was a deal but with developments already
agreed to build a new purpose- in the pipeline before the car
built facility. Dallara built the was launched and a zero keel
chassis, Cosworth supplied the chassis. Reductions in the price
engines and along with US F1 of computing allowed the team to
and Manor Grand Prix it entered create powerful CAD workstations
the Championship in 2010. for a fraction of the cost that they
However, financial problems were a decade previously, which
led to Jos Ramn Carabante allowed it to design in incredible
taking over the team, and detail for the time.
installing Colin Kolles to replace The team also bought in a lot
Campos in early 2010. The team of crash-testing equipment, to
was named HRT and competed in circumnavigate the extremely
the World Championship between restrictive rules.
2010 and 2012 before the team
sold its assets to Teo Martin, MANOR GRAND PRIX
owner of a firm specialising in The plans for the British team to
recycling automotive parts. enter F1 essentially started in
2007, when owner John Booth
US F1 was bought out by Tony Shaw.
One of the teams that attempted Two years later, it was announced Top: the ill-fated HRT F1 team, which competed from 2010-12, holds the
to hit the grid in the era of cost that Manor intended to contest record for the most starts without scoring a point. Centre: Jordan became
capping was the US F1 team the Championship, renamed as Midland, and then in 2007 competed as Spyker (pictured) before being bought
in 2010. It was not brought in Virgin Racing and now competing out by Force India. Above: Toro Rosso, formerly Minardi, debuted in 2006
under the cost-cap regulations under the Marussia banner.
planning for the team had The team is not a front runner with Bernie Ecclestone to receive looking at potential partners and
started in 2006, with initial plans in 2013, but is one of the few guaranteed payments even if it sponsors for the future, said
based around the need to provide new teams that is still on the grid. does not finish in the top 10 in sporting director Graeme Lowdon.
$48m entry bond under the then It has run Cosworth engines for the constructors championship. The biggest thing is external
Concorde Agreement. the last three years, taken on a The deal means that will help to perception. Were perceived to be
Led by engineer Ken Anderson, new Xtrac gearbox in 2012 that attract sponsorship and the team on the same grid, in the same pit
the plan was simple: go to saved considerable weight and now expects to stay in F1 until at lane as every other team now,
Companies House in London and targeted beating Caterham. As least 2020. It quite clearly would and it has just removed some of
get the financial results from reported in issue V24N1, the team lead to questions when were that uncertainty.
Williams that had been posted has secured a new agreement

Teams signing up for the optional cost cap would do so


in exchange for greater technical freedom

Formula 1 supplement www.racecar-engineering.com


F-DUCTS

Boosting straight speed


The ingenious way of stalling the rear wing and achieving significant straight-line gains

R
eplaced by DRS for BY SAM COLLINS straight so the effect needs to The key to optimising the
2011, one innovation be temporary, or switchable. F-duct system was to develop
was still present on the (on slower, low-grip circuits and An attempt to achieve this a rear wing design that stalled
Red Bull RB6, which is when cornering), on a high- effect was first made during under the influence of the
discussed in the new owners speed straight ultimate speed is the 2004 season, when several f-duct, but did not compromise
manual from Haynes Publishing. compromised by a high level of teams used flexible rear wings, downforce when the system
The following is an extract from it: downforce, as a high downforce which allowed the slot between was not in operation. The RB6s
wing produces a high level of drag. the two elements to close up system took time to develop,
The F-duct was an innovation The idea behind the F-duct was under high load (for instance, on a and initially the air from the
for 2010, first developed by to provide the car with a straight- high-speed straight), stalling the F-duct was blown over the wing
McLaren. The system appeared line speed boost by temporarily wing. From the 2006 Canadian upper element. A reasonable
on the RB6 for the first time at reducing the drag created by the Grand Prix, by regulation rigid stall was achieved, but at the
the Turkish Grand Prix in May. rear wing. Two elements are used separators had to be fitted expense of a small reduction in
Adrian Newey explains the rear wing performance when the
systems origins: Really it was
experimentation. The F-duct The technology actually stems system was not being operated.
The system was developed and
technology actually stems from
the Cold War in the 1950s, when
from the Cold War in the 1950s improved during the season and,
at the Japanese Grand Prix, a
the Americans were worried major revision appeared, with the
that the Russians would develop on the rear wing to prevent the between the wing elements to air from the F-duct being blown
ways of jamming the electronics wing from stalling, by creating a prevent them from flexing. over the main wing element
on their fighter aircraft, and so slot to allow high-pressure air to The F-duct achieved the same rather than the upper element.
they developed, effectively, a bleed through. So, if this effect effect as closing up the slot The switching of the airflow
pneumatic version of electronics. can be reversed, and the wing can between the wing elements, by from the lower to the upper
So an F-duct is actually a be deliberately stalled, drag (and temporarily allowing extra air to duct in the engine cover is being
transistor, but using air rather downforce) will be reduced and flow over one of the elements, achieved by using a fluid switch
than electricity. straight-line speed increased. Of causing the airflow to separate operated by the driver. The basic
Although a high level of course, this is only desirable in a from it and hence stall it. It was method of operation is as follows:
rear downforce is desirable situation when downforce is not found that this could create a top
under certain circumstances so important such as on a long speed increase of up to 4mph. Control air flows into the
system ducting through
an intake in the right-hand
A schematic showing sidepod. In the default
the key components position, this air flows out
of the RB6 F-duct through the snorkel on the
left-hand side of the cockpit.
Stall air flows into the ducting
The driver operates the F-duct from an intake in the bodywork
by placing his left hand over the above the drivers head, above
snorkel in the cockpit the main engine air intake. In
the default position, this air
flows out through the outlet in
the rear bodywork below the
rear wing lower element.
The driver places his hand
over the snorkel to activate
the system.
The control airflow is diverted
along the ducting inside the
engine cover, where it deflects
the stall airflow upwards so
that it exits through the void
in the rear wing upper element
(early season) or over the main
wing element (late season). The
stall airflow creates turbulence
at the rear of the wing element,
stalling the airflow.

www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement


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F1 FRONT WINGS 2010

Winged wonders
One of the hottest technical topics during the 2010 F1 season
concerned the front wings. Our resident aero expert takes a
look at the science and the engineering behind them

BY SIMON MCBEATH

R
ed Bull may or may
not actually give you
wings, but its Racing
division certainly serves
up plenty to talk about on the
topic of wings. In 2007 we had
controversy over flexible rear
wings if you recall, after on-car
footage of intriguingly the
Red Bulls rear wing leaning back
at speed was seen on TV and
subsequently in video published
on the internet.
Our analysis feature on that
occasion (V18N1) said it looked
as if those clever F1 engineers
had found another way to
pass the tests and checks at
scrutineering while still providing
a degree of flexibility in the
installations of the wings. Then in
2010, the situation was uncannily
similar, with the same team
(plus Ferrari) coming under the
spotlight as footage and photos
once again revealed something
clever was going on.
We all know that theres more
to F1 than ever meets the eye,
and that most of the really clever
innovations remain forever under
wraps. In this case we could see
what was going on, even if we
couldnt see entirely how it was
being done. We can, however,
attempt to understand properly
why it was going on.
Visually there were two
separate things happening
during the 2010 season, up to
and most obviously including
the Hungarian GP, probably
LAT

brought about by quite different


means. There was the simple The flexible front wings caught on camera during the 2010 Hungarian Grand Prix: the front
flexing of the front wings in of Sebastian Vettels RB6 (top) hugs the ground, while Mark Webbers (above) is in flex
response to the aerodynamic
loads, wherein the outer portions
of the 1.8m wide (70.9in) span
wing assembly, suspended from
We saw the simple flexing of the wings in response
two quite closely spaced pylons to aerodynamic loads, and then the whole front of
under the nose, bend closer to
the ground at speed. All centrally the car getting closer to the ground than normal
www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement
Ground effect and front wing performance
(three-element wing, pseudo-2D CFD, 200mph, moving ground)
Downforce

Figure 3: At lower ground clearances the air near to the wing surface loses
more energy, as depicted here by total pressure (Cp-total) losses
0.10 0.12 0.14 0.16 0.18 0.20 0.22 0.24 0.26 0.28 0.30
Height to wing underside as proportion of chord, c

Figure 1: downforce from a front wing increases as ground clearance


decreases but only up to a point

Figure 2: this front wing was evaluated in CFD for Aerobytes in V15N6

Figure 4: as ground clearance reduces, parts of the wing work better, but
the more rearward parts struggle, and ultimately flow separation occurs

It also demonstrates why racecar about as low as they needed to


engineers would ideally want be. But while this 2D CFD view
to operate the front wing in the demonstrates the generic effect,
region around the peak on this 3D flows are more complex and
plot, to maximise the performance change the picture considerably,
of the wing and to minimise as the next example (which
Figure 5: a 2010 F1-style front wing the forces on the potent outer fluctuations in wing-generated originally appeared in Aerobytes
sections inevitably cause flex at speed downforce over a relevant dynamic in V15N6) shows.
ride height range. Here a simple two-element
mounted wings must do this to and/or getting the whole front front wing was evaluated in a 3D
some extent, but others clearly wing nearer to the ground. PLAYING BY THE RULES CFD trial at two different ground
do it more. And then there was Front wings on open wheel Its tempting to superimpose clearances. Measured to the
the rather different matter of the racecars operate in ground effect, some dimensions on to this. leading edge these were 92mm
whole front wing possibly the and as is well known proximity The 2010 F1 front wing had and 70mm, which approximated
whole front of the car getting to the ground amplifies the a maximum permitted chord 62mm and 40mm ground
closer to the ground at speed downforce that can be generated (between 400mm and 750mm clearance to the lowest part of
than seemed normal, and the from a given wing, relative to from the cars centreline) of the wings underside.
potential mechanisms by which its performance in freestream 550mm. The peak on the graph in The first thing to note here is
this might be have been achieved air, well above the ground. This the diagram at 0.136c therefore that the wing was still performing
are what really lie at the centre effect increases the closer a wing equates to a height above the properly at these smaller ground
of this controversy. McLaren gets to the ground, until at a ground of about 75mm. clearances, as would be expected.
team principal Martin Whitmarsh certain height the effect reverses The 2010 FIA Formula 1 Secondly, at the lower ground
commented that his team couldnt because of flow separation and technical regulations stipulated clearance, the wing produced
understand how this could be the downforce reduces again. that the minimum height of any 4.5 per cent more downforce, a
done within the regulations, The diagram above (top left) part of the front wing measured significant gain and one not to be
and the precise mechanisms is a typical representation of the statically may not be less than ignored. Hence the whole quest
will almost certainly remain effect were describing, derived 85mm above the bottom of the to obtain lower ground clearance
a mystery. What we can do, with pseudo 2D CFD on a three- un-worn plank (itself 10mm on what in F1 is compulsorily
however, is look at the potential element wing section, and it thick and bolted to the so-called quite a high mounted front wing.
benefits and downsides of illustrates simply how a front wing reference plane). This might However, it is fair to say that
employing a flexible front wing, is sensitive to ground clearance. suggest the front wings were making moveable systems like

Formula 1 supplement www.racecar-engineering.com


F1 FRONT WINGS 2010

these work to your advantage underbody further downstream.


is no simple task, especially So not only was the front wings
given the changing profile of downforce contribution increased
the wing across the span, as by improving the efficiency of
well as the proximity of the the end-plates, so too was the
front tyre, chassis and other underbodys contribution. And
downstream paraphernalia. although the overall gain was
There is another benefit to predominantly front-biased, its
be had from allowing the front not all from the front wing.
wing to flex too, and that is to
bring the end plate nearer to WING LOWERING
the ground. Doing this once The most contentious aspect of
again strengthens the wings what was seen and photographed
performance by reducing the on the Red Bulls, however, was
amount of air that can flow the apparent ability to run the
under the end plates into the whole of the front wing closer
low-pressure area beneath wing, to the ground than anyone else.
which allows more downforce Leaving aside for a moment the
again to be generated. really contentious side how this
But according to highly might be have been done while
Schematic showing the approximate order of wing flex and overall experienced F1 aerodynamicist remaining within the rules the
movement believed to have been happening on some F1 cars during 2010 Frank Dernie, with whom Racecar foregoing explanations on how
had the opportunity to discuss ground proximity will increase the
WHY DO FRONT WINGS STALL WHEN these matters, this also has an front wings downforce provides
THEY GET TOO CLOSE TO THE GROUND? important effect downstream the why, and can also be applied
too, because getting that front to the rest of the wings span,

A
s air passes under the the climb. What ensues is flow wing end-plate closer to the even the neutral, symmetrical
leading edge of a front separation, where the flow no ground also reduces the adverse section across the central
wing it accelerates and, longer remains attached to the effect that the front wing tip 500mm, which also produced
as Bernoulli described, its (static) wing surface and instead breaks vortex has on the underbody. downforce when in ground effect.
pressure reduces. Then, from the away before it reaches the With the full width front wings So not only would the outer
region of minimum pressure under trailing edge. The net result is that were mandated at the portions flex closer to the ground,
the wing to the wings trailing that downforce reduces, and this start of 2009, this vortex ran but the rest of the span got
edge, the velocity slows and the corresponds to the graph line around the outside of the tyres, closer to the ground too, which
pressure rises again. This region to the left of the peak in the but it still gets drawn into the will have contributed to a more
of rising pressure has what is Figure 1 diagram.
referred to as an adverse pressure Although the wing trial HOW DO FRONT WINGS FLEX?
gradient, for the simple reason shown here produced an

M
that air much more naturally flows increase in downforce at the aking a front wing effectively flex. But the overall
from high to low pressure and not lower ride height tested, it also flex under load isnt aerodynamic force vector on
the other way round. illustrated what happens as a complicated in principle, this outer section, which is the
When a front wing is above wing gets closer to its minimum but the R&D effort required to combination of vertical and
the critical height identified in critical height above the ground. enable it to do so predictably horizontal aerodynamic forces,
Figure 1, the air is able to climb Figure 4, the graph on the and controllably must be sets up a twisting load on
this adverse pressure gradient bottom right is a delta Cp-static considerable. As Frank Dernie the centre section that, were
because it has enough energy to plot showing the difference commented: Toyota ran with the structure not designed to
do so and the pressure gradient in static pressure coefficients a flexible front wing all through resist it, would see the rear
is not too steep. However, as on the wings suction surface 2009 and it took a long while to of the end-plate get nearer
the wing is lowered towards the between the two cases. get the lay-up right. to the ground under load. This
ground, the pressure underneath The blue shows where lower So it was about engineering would also decrease the angle
gets lower and lower until the static pressure coefficients the composite lay-up of the of attack of the outer part
critical low height for a given occurred at the lower ground wing to obtain the degree of of the wing, which is clearly
wing is reached, at which point clearance; red shows where flex required, and to remain not the current aim.
the adverse pressure gradient higher static pressure coefficients within the regulations or to So the lay-up of the wing
becomes too steep. occurred at the lower ground pass the scrutineering tests, must resist this torsional
Not only that but, as we clearance. Clearly the mainplane if these requirements are load, but allow beam flex
see from the trial done on produced more suction at the thought to differ across the span of the wing.
the wing (Figure 2), by being lower ground clearance, but the Looking at an F1-style Altering the thickness and
worked harder at a lower ground flap produced less suction. There wing, its clear that the the direction of the fibre
clearance, the air adjacent to the was still a net overall gain in this aerodynamic load that is orientations in the reinforcing
wing surface loses more energy, instance, but were the ground generated by the outer carbon fabrics for example
depicted as total pressure. clearance to be reduced still portions will be considerably to align at +/-45O relative to
A steeper adverse pressure further, flow separation would greater than that generated the wingspan are well-used
gradient and less energy mean develop. This would then see a by the central portion, about methods in achieving the
the air can no longer make reduction in downforce. which the structure will desired structural properties.

www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement


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SHD COMPOSITES.indd 1 04/04/2013 15:05


F1 FRONT WINGS 2010

significant gain in front end So, for those who got it


downforce than flexing the tips right, how much lap time was it
alone, according to Dernie. We still all worth? Published estimates
wonder at just how this additional vary from an unlikely sounding
forward-biased downforce will second per lap to a more
have been balanced, but the Red realistic-sounding three-tenths
Bulls (and Ferraris) certainly did per lap. The reality is probably
not look unbalanced, which serves somewhere between the two. Red
to illustrate how good those cars Bulls lap time advantage at the
were overall, notwithstanding any Hungaroring in 2010 was, if one
front wing trickery. averages the two drivers times,
Dernie observed that there almost exactly a second ahead of
is one inherent disadvantage of the nearest competitor (Ferrari),
using the aerodynamic forces to while the average of their fastest
reduce the ground clearance over race laps was about seven
some of, or the entire, front wing, Some sense of the complexities in the flows around the wing tips and the tenths faster than the nearest
and that is that the maximum front wheels was derived using Ansys CFD-Flo on this F1-style front-end Ferrari. Dernie observed that the
effect is at the fastest speeds, model. The wing is coloured by pressure, the streamlines by velocity difference in the performance
which are on the straights and of the Ferraris and McLarens is
therefore the maximum benefit is corner and re-applying full separation at lower ground probably mostly due to the front
not where its necessarily wanted. throttle at corner exit. clearances and lose downforce, wing, but the difference between
However, total drag does Countering this point, another it will be the car that rises back the Red Bulls and the Ferraris is
not increase with increased well-known former F1 designer, up on its suspension, rather more than just the front wing.
front wing downforce so there Gary Anderson, suggested in than the wing, so causing the The best car will be the one
was no penalty in that sense. Autosport that when a flexible car to bounce. that offers the best compromise
And although braking at the front wing starts to generate According to Anderson then, between absolute downforce
end of straights may possibly flow separation as it approaches a car with a flexible wing will be and consistent performance to
have been enhanced (unless the ground, the loss of downforce more benign, the wing finding its provide the driver with not only
the tyres are already saturated will then regulate the wing own happy medium. Again, good grip but also good feel and
with downforce, to use a Dernie height by allowing the wing to if this is the case, considerable confidence. And maintaining a
expression), the maximum flex back up again. In contrast, R&D would be involved to front to rear balance is absolutely
downforce benefit may not he surmised, a rigid front control the wings stiffness, or crucial. Flexing, moving wings
have been available when it wing will compress the front lack thereof, in order to find must make this an even more
was most needed between suspension as it loads up, but the sweet spot between un- difficult goal to achieve. So the
coming off the brakes into a then as it starts to see flow damped fluttering and excess Red Bulls speed advantage in
rigidity a classic case for 2010 is unlikely to have been all
HOW DO FRONT WINGS GET NEARER THE GROUND? fluid-structure interaction (FSI) about its clever front wing.
analysis, no doubt. But, every little helps

A
llowing a cars suspension Possible explanations
to be compressed by that inevitably come to mind, THE FIA TESTS
aerodynamic loads however fanciful, might be:

F
enables dynamic ride height to IA Formula 1 race director in the wing mountings or the
be lower than static ride height, A floor passing the upward Charlie Whiting told nose. Measuring deflection
but only up to the point where deflection test yet moving Racecar that up to and relative to the reference plane
the lowest part of the chassis up dynamically, enabling including the Hungarian GP in of the cars underside, however,
underside usually the front greater compression of the 2010: we have been measuring will take into account any
of the consumable 10mm thick front suspension, and hence deflection at the outer ends deflections in the mounts or the
plank in the case of F1 cars lower front wing height. of the front wing relative to nose (although it could still miss
touches the ground. How close A nose that droops, the nose. It will now be done more devious mechanisms).
to the ground is the front of the Concorde-style, or deforms at relative to the reference plane. The current load/deflection
plank? Frank Dernie: You run the speed, allowing the wing to But the load/deflection criteria criteria stipulated in the
car so that the plank stays just move closer to the ground. will not change that is 10mm regulations involved a 500N
within the 1mm wear you are Wing mounts that lengthen of deflection will be permitted (approximately 50kg) load
allowed throughout a race. or deform at speed yet under a 500N load. However, exerted vertically downwards
So, the plank grounds allow static scrutineering we now reserve the right to on the outer end of the wing,
periodically, but not continually, checks to be passed. increase the load to as high with a maximum permitted
or wear will exceed this limit. None of the other teams is as 1000N and expect to see deflection of 10mm.
Given then that the rules able to run its cars nearly linear behaviour above the The threat of potentially
require that the lowest point of as low as Red Bull Racing normal test load. having to pass a test where
the front wing must be 85mm did, and the Red Bulls were The first part of this double that force is applied
above the unworn plank, how running legally at all times. statement is an interesting and linear deflection (ie 20mm
is it possible to get the central development because the maximum) is expected may have
section seemingly much closer Pick one of the above or add way in which the test was meant the 2010 summer break
to the ground that this when a your own theory to the list and previously carried out might was no holiday in the composites
car is at speed? let us know about it! not have picked up compliance departments of some teams

www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement


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TECHNOLOGY - J DAMPERS

Harmony restored
The cloak of secrecy has been lifted from the inerter but
how does it really work and what can it be employed to do?
BY CHARLES ARMSTRONG-WILSON

T
he secret of mechanical That is, it has inertia, but that Also, the velocity of the To show how effective this
grip is to reduce rapid inertia is relevant to its position rack is the velocity of one concept can be, if one was to
load variations at the in space. In that sense it is like terminal minus the velocity of set both 1 and 2 at 3.0, then
tyre contact patch. This a grounded capacitor whose the other, or: the inertance factor will be 81
simple truth has been known potential is relative to earth. times the mass of the flywheel.
for years and is the objective What did not seem to exist v = v2 v1 From this it is easy to see how
of tuning suspension dampers. was a mechanical element that the actual inertia of the unit due
To this end, teams all over the could be used like a capacitor in then: to movement of its centre of
world run thousands of hours isolation. In other words, with gravity is relatively insignificant
of expensive rig testing time in two terminals and the behaviour 1 = /r3 compared to the energy that can
order to better understand it. of which was dependent on the 2 = r2/r1 be captured and released by the
More recently, mass dampers load across those two terminals device. In fact, one of Smiths
have been employed to achieve and not its movement relative to The resulting equation of motion: first prototypes had an inertance-
the same aim, most notably by its position in space. to-mass ratio of about 300.
Renault F1. But it also emerged Without this element, it would In order to use the inerter
that the McLaren team had pre- not be possible to replicate to successfully damp cyclical
empted their use with its subtle most electrical configurations
and complex inerter. mechanically. PROFESSOR MALCOLM C SMITH
The concept for the inerter

H
originated through Cambridge ENERGY CAPTURE aving received a degree in mathematics from Cambridge
University and Professor Malcolm It was while considering this University, Malcolm C Smith stayed on to complete an M Phil
C Smiths work on electrical that Smith came up with the degree in control engineering and operational research, and then
and mechanical systems. There idea of storing kinetic energy a PhD in control engineering. Equipped with such a hefty portfolio of
has been a long-standing rotationally in flywheels. They qualification, he went on to become a research fellow at the German
observation that most elements could capture and release large Aerospace Center, DRL, a visiting assistant professor and research fellow
in an electrical circuit have amounts of mechanical energy, with the Department of Electrical Engineering at McGill University,
a mechanical equivalent. By while having an insignificantly Montreal, Canada, and an assistant professor with the Department of
viewing a mechanical system as small inertia relative to their Electrical Engineering at the Ohio State University, Columbus, USA.
an equivalent of an electrical one, position. By gearing up the He is now a fellow of Gonville & Caius College and a professor in the
a different perspective can be flywheels to increase their speed, Department of Engineering at the University of Cambridge.
taken on how it works and how a greater amount of energy can His particular research interests are control system design, frequency
the elements all interact. be captured without increasing response methods, H-infinity optimisation, non-linear systems, adaptive
There are different views as the mass of the device and its control and active suspension.
to how this equivalence should inertia in space.
be defined, but for his work Smith As an attempt to create this
has adopted the convention effect, Smith started with a PETER WRIGHT SAYS
that force is the mechanical configuration as in Figure 1.

T
equivalent of current and velocity One terminal is mounted on the he test for parts of the car that move and may have an
equates to voltage. Likewise, casing that houses the gears. The incidental effect on aerodynamics was approved by the World
certain electrical components other is on the end of a rack that Motor Sport Council in 1993, and is that the aero effect must
have mechanical counterparts. He spins a gear that, in turn, spins a not be significant. This then became the official interpretation of the
equates the mechanical spring flywheel at high speed. primary/secondary test that applied to things like fans. Something
to the electrical inductor, the To consider how much like a piston for example moves, but the aero effect it has is
damper to a resistor and a fixed energy is stored, we can derive judged insignificant.
mechanical point to the electrical a simple formula. If we define In the Renault case, the Appeal Court found that the effect of the
ground of a circuit. However, he the following: mass damper was significant, based on figures supplied by Renault,
notes that up until now, within even if it was secondary.
his preferred convention, there r1 = radius of the rack pinion The other important issue is whether the moving component
has been no obvious direct = radius of gyration of in question is part of the suspension or not. The mass damper was
mechanical counterpart to the the flywheel deemed not to be, while the J-damper undoubtedly is. This is why it
electrical capacitor. r2 = radius of the gearwheel is permitted, whether it has a significant aerodynamic effect or not.
That said, the mass of a body m = mass of the flywheel Peter Wright is a consultant to the FIA and technical consultant to
can be equated to a capacitor r3 = radius of the Racecar Engineering
under a special set of conditions. flywheel pinion

Formula 1 supplement www.racecar-engineering.com 37


on a rack
Figure 1 that drives a pinion as it moves in and out. The pinion drives a ywheel via a larger gear producingotherOne
is onterminal
the end ofis mounted
a rack thaton the
high rotational
Mechanical speeds andof
interpretation capturing large amounts
the principles of inertial
of the inerter. One energy compared
terminal to theon
is mounted mass
theofcasing,
the whole
the unitspins casing
other a gear that, in turn, spins
that houses a
the gears. The
on a rack that drives a pinion as it moves in and out. The pinion drives a ywheel via a larger gear producing ywheel
otherat is
high
on speed.
the end of a rack that
TECHNOLOGY - J DAMPERS Tospins
consider howthat,
muchinenergy
high rotational speeds and capturing large amounts of inertial energy compared to the mass of the whole unit a gear turn, spins a
is stored, we can derive
ywheel at high speed.a formula
if we dene the following:
To consider how much energy
INERTERS Rack Pinions is stored,
behaviour we suspension
in a cars can derive a it formula
r1 = radius of the rack
if we dene
is necessary to tunethethefollowing:
device
pinion
to the frequencies likely to be
Rack Pinions = radius of gyration of
encounteredr1 =inradius of theInrack
the system.
the ywheel
Smiths words,
pinion We define the
r2 = radius of the
ideal inerter
= to be a of
radius mechanical,
gyration of
gearwheel
one-port device
the such that the
ywheel
m = mass of the ywheel
equal andr2 opposite
= radius forcetheapplied
r3 = radius of the of
ywheel
at the nodes is proportional to
piniongearwheel
the relative acceleration between
m = mass of the ywheel
the nodes.
r3 =ofradius
The velocity of the
the rack ywheel
is the
Put mathematically:
velocity of one terminal minus
pinion
the velocity of the other or:
The velocity of the rack is the
v =velocity
v2 v1 of one terminal minus
The constant b is the inertance
measured the velocity
in kg and of the other
equates to or:
Then:
McLarens zogs. This was all part
of the teams v = v2 efforts v1to keep its
1 = /r3
new technology secret. Firstly,
2 = r2/r1
the team Then: christened its inerter
Terminal 2 Gear Flywheel Terminal 1 a J-damper, or jounce damper, as
The resulting equation of motion:
was revealed 1 =in/r3 the secrets to
Renault case. Then, rather than
2 = r2/r1
using the term inertance which
Terminal 2 Gear Flywheel Terminal 1 would have been a big giveaway
To show Thehow resulting
effective equation
this of motion:
in the pits if anyone overheard
FIGURE 1 concept can be, if
it the engineers came up with one was to
Mechanical interpretation of the principles of the inerter. One terminal is mounted on the set both 1 and
the term zog. In pit garage 2 at 3.0, then
casing,
Table 1
the other on a rack that drives a pinion as it moves in and out. The pinion drives a the inertance
parlance, can you factor changewill beto a81
flywheel
The viaelectrical
three main a larger components
gear producing highmechanical
and their rotationalequivalents.
speeds andUntil
capturing large amounts
the invention of
of the inerter times the mass of
50-zog J-damper. The actual this
To show how the ywheel.
effective
there was energy
inertial no mechanical
comparedequivalent
to theofmass
the capacitor
of the whole unit From concept
this it between
relationship is easy
can be, tozogs
see
if one how
and was
kg to
the actual
is still set
onlybothinertia
known of
1within the
and 2 unit
theatkeydue
3.0, then
to movement
people at Woking. of its centre of
Table 1 the inertance factor will be 81
gravity is relatively insignicant
MECHANICAL ELECTRICAL
The three main electrical components and their mechanical equivalents. Until the invention of the inerter
Getting
timesthis therelationship
comparedistocritical,
mass of the
the energyonly
right,
ywheel.
that can
however, From this it isnot easy to see how
there was no mechanical equivalent of the capacitor bemaking
captured
to theand
the actual
released
J-damper
inertiawork
by the
of the unit due
device.
effectively,In fact, one
but also to of Smiths
avoid
to movement
rst prototypes had
of its
andamper
centre of
inertance-
huge loads should the
gravity is relatively insignicant
MECHANICAL ELECTRICAL to-mass
and ratio of about
the suspension
compared tothe
start300.
cycling
theinerter
energy that can
In order to use
together. In the worst case it
be captured
to successfully damp andcyclical
released by the
could rip the damper and even
device. In fact,
the suspension apart. Indeed, it
behaviour in a cars one
suspension of Smiths
some rst
is necessary
believe prototypes
to
this tunewasthe had
the an inertance-
device
cause
of theto-mass
to Felipe frequencies
Massas ratio of about
likely
suspension to be300.
encountered
failure at In in the
order
Monza into system.
use the
2007, as Ininerter
Smiths to words,
successfully We
Ferrari struggled to come to denedamp thecyclical
ideal inerter
terms behaviour
with the to newbeinaatechnology.
mechanical,
cars suspension it
one-port
The device
is stored
necessary such
energy to that
in thethe
tune the device
equalto
inerter and
isthe opposite
calculated
frequencies force
using:applied
likely to be
at the nodes is proportional to
encountered in the system. In
the relative acceleration between
Smiths words, We dene the
the nodes.
ideal inerter to be a mechanical,
Put mathematically:
Here, b is the inertance and
one-port device such that the
would typically be given in kg.
equal and opposite force applied
This completes the battery
at the nodes is proportional to
of mechanical equivalents to
TABLE 1 the components
electrical relative acceleration
as shown between
34 www.racecar-engineering.com September 2008 the nodes.
The three main electrical components and their in Table 1.
mechanical equivalents. Until the invention Like a Put mathematically:
conventional suspension
of the inerter there was no mechanical damper, the ideal inerter for
equivalent of the capacitor a suspension system can be
32_RE18N9_J damper-MPs.indd 34
approximated by calculation. 18/7/08 16:35:13
Compared to the mass
34 www.racecar-engineering.com September 2008 damper, the inerter is mounted
differently within the suspension.

www.racecar-engineering.com Formula 1 supplement

32_RE18N9_J damper-MPs.indd 34 18/7/08


DESIGN AND INNOVATION

MASS DAMPING
MASS DAMPING

Figure
On the l
normal
of a mas

m being u
a larger
(M). In c
M schema
shows h
is used
same ef

FIGURE 2
On the left is the normal arrangement of a mass damper (m)
being used to stabilise a larger sprung mass (M).
In contrast, the schematic on the right shows how an inerter
The constant
is used b is the
to achieve theinertance
same effect Here, b is the inertance and can only be considered as before they occur
measured in kg and equates would typical be given in kg. the mechanical equivalent of into the condition
to McLarens zogs. This was all This completes the battery grounded capacitors because patch of the tyre
part of the teams efforts to of mechanical equivalents to their acceleration is relative to seen how it will s
In Figure 2, the mass damper can only be considered as can only act after the external was a movable aerodynamic
keep
(m) is its new to
attached technology
the sprung secret. the mechanical electrical components
equivalent of as shown
input has been a xed However,
applied. inertial frame. Heand
device also
illegal undervariations
the and all
Firstly,
mass (M)the andteam
uses its christened
inertia its grounded in capacitors
table 1. because the inerter byproposed
operating an inerterFormula design1 rules. But surelygenerate
by maximu
inerter
relative toa J-damper,
its position or jounce
in space to Much islike
their acceleration a conventional
relative to in harmony withthat has an insignicant
the natural reducing mass
cyclical behaviour in Going back to
exert an opposing force
damper, as was revealed in the on the a fixed inertial frame. He also
suspension damper, the ideal frequencies of the suspension
compared to the energy it isthe suspension, couldnt the
damper, this was
main mass to calm its motion. proposed an inerter design system can anticipate the input. inerter also have an influence
secrets to Renault
In contrast, the inerter in
case last inerter for a suspension
that has an insignificant mass
system capable
That way movements and load
of storing. grounds that it ha
on the attitude of the car and,
year. Then, rather
Figure 3 between the mass than using can be approximated
compared to the energy it is by His design
variations can be cancelled out is a simple
therefore the aerodynamics? on the attitude of
the
and term inertance,
the exciting force can which
absorbwouldcapablecalculation.
of storing. mechanical
before they occur. Translate thatsystemThe that can be
answer is certainly part of the car. As
yes, yet
and return
have beenmechanical
a big giveawayenergy in the His design is a simpleto the massinto
Compared the conditions
damper at the contact
constructed the device
in a number has not beenan
of ways, deemed
aerodynamic d
in harmony with and opposing
pits if anyone overheard it, the mechanical the system
inerterthat can be
is mounted patch of the tyre and it can be
differently either driving the masses illegal by the FIA.
with a decreed that the
its movement. constructed in a number of ways, seen how it will stabilise load All this demonstrates that
engineers came up with the term
So, to recap, what Smith has
within the suspension. variations and allow
driving the masses with a rack
rack the
or arubber
spiral,to
andthea mechanical was a moveable a
real reason for outlawing
zog.
devisedIn pit
is angarage parlance, can or a spiral, and
ideal mechanical In gure 2, the mass generate maximum grip.
a mechanical mass dampers was the safety device a
you change to terminals
a 50-zogand J-damper. damper
can be(m) builtisinattached concerns of having several kilos the Form
movements and
inerter with two advantage that Going back to the mass
the relative
The actualacceleration
relationship of betweencreatesto very
thehigh rotational
sprung mass damper, this was banned on the mounted on springs in the nose, But sure
those terminals is proportional
zogs and kg is still only known
to the force on them. Crucially,
energy. Its key advantage is
(M) and uses its inertia
that it acts very differently to
load variations can be
grounds that it had an influence
on the attitude of the sprung
a part of the car that often
becomes detached. The inerter,
cyclical
within the
Getting
terminal
key people
it behaves like a normal two-
this relationship
capacitor.
at Woking.
In contrast, right, act after
relative
inthe
space
to its
springs and dampers. These
eventtoinexert
position
an
that they
cancelled out before
part of the car. As this is, in itself,
an aerodynamic device, it was
mounted on the main part
of the car and weighing
suspens
the iner
however,
conventional is mass
critical, not only
dampers opposing
need movement to force
operate, onsothe they occur
decreed that the mass damper comparatively little, was not an inue
to making the J-damper work main mass to calm its attitude
effectively, but also to avoid motion. In contrast, the inerter in advantage can be built in that therefore the aer
Professor Smith devised an mechanical interter with two terminals,
huge loads should the damper gure 3 between the mass and creates very high rotational The answer is cer
and their relative acceleration is proportional to the force on them
and the suspension start cycling the exciting force can absorb energy. Its key advantage is yet the device ha
together. In the worst case it and return mechanical energy in that it acts very differently to deemed illegal by
could rip the damper and even harmony with and opposing its springsFormula 1 supplement www.racecar-engineering.com
and dampers. These this demonstrate
the suspension apart. Indeed, movement. act after the event in that they real reason for ou
some believe this was the cause To recap, what Smith has need movement to operate so dampers was the
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