Cars & Motorcycles
Racecar Engineering

Racecar Engineering

December 2020

Racecar Engineering is the world’s leading technology publication for the motorsport industry. From aerodynamics to engines and from handling theory to manufacturing practice, Racecar Engineering is read by motorsport’s top professionals. Only Racecar Engineering brings this insight every month.

United Kingdom
Chelsea Magazine
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12 Issues

in this issue

13 min.
silver bullet?

Formula 1 is governed by the Concorde Agreement, which outlines the mutual obligations of the sport’s governing body (FIA), its commercial rights holder (Liberty Media, trading as F1) and all competing teams. As such, the agreement provides F1’s commercial structures and its regulatory framework, last named having the powers to supersede the FIA’s International Sporting Code on all matters save for safety provisions. The Concorde Agreement is effectively F1’s constitution, and renewing (or extending) the document can be long-winded. The 1998-2007 Concorde was replaced on 1 January 2010, but only after F1 had been pushed to the edge of breakaway threats. That consensus is not readily forthcoming is no surprise. The 12 signatories have disparate agendas and differing business models. Having been introduced in 2013, the current Concorde expires at the end…

13 min.
withdrawal agreement

‘We are working on another spec for 2021, which we are confident can produce a notable percentage improvement in performance’Toyoharu Tanabe, Honda Formula 1 technical director As Formula 1 settles into the final third of the 2020 season, it does so in the knowledge that power unit supplier, Honda, will conclude its participation in the FIA Formula 1 World Championship at the end of the 2021 season. The Japanese firm returned to the series in 2015 after a seven-year hiatus, before which it was a full works constructor. Its first few seasons of the current stint as a power unit supplier under F1’s 1.6-litre V6, turbo-hybrid regulations were a struggle as the manufacturer caught up to the other engine suppliers who had several more years of development under their belts at that…

10 min.
structural integrity

The innovative Aeroscreen that was designed and developed to campaign in the 2020 NTT IndyCar Series has, by all accounts, been a success, garnering positive reviews from drivers, officials and fans alike. The system of components that make up the Red Bull Advanced Technologies (RBAT)-designed Aeroscreen comprises a 3D printed titanium upper frame, laminated polycarbonate windscreen and a structural carbon fibre lower frame. Combined, these are designed to provide driver protection from the wide range of (potential) projectiles associated with American-style open-wheel racing on a variety of tracks, including superspeedways where debris fields can be rather large. As the frame and polycarbonate transparency are the most visible change to the 2020 IndyCar, it is easy to overlook the lower frame assembly that serves as the foundation of the entire system, but…

12 min.
operation bloodhound

We were looking to improve the performance model with actual data While low-speed testing (200mph) on the runway at Newquay airport in 2017 was all about demonstrating that we could operate the car, and to gather data on the installation and integration of the Eurojet EJ200, South Africa was all about gathering the data for the whole operation. Everything from logistics, planning and operations to how well the air brakes work, to drinking water and laundry. In fact, everything we need to understand before embarking on the Land Speed Record attempt. Hakskeen Pan (HKP) is remote, incredibly beautiful and the finest place on the planet to go fast. However, that remoteness brings with it its own challenges. Twice a week we needed to go and collect drinking water from the nearest significant…

3 min.
case study

Now we have a basic relationship of this car set-up to the handling categories, we can consider the VHM in a case study. Imagine the following situation: the car is a 911 GT3 Cup at a high quality European circuit with the set-up described in Table 1, except the rear ride height is +10mm (10mm above minimum allowed), front is at minimum and the wing is in position four. During the practice session, using a good set of used tyres on target with pressure, the driver complains the car cannot get to the apex on the corners while trail braking and becomes unstable at the rear on corner exit. This doesn’t happen for corners that don’t require braking. In fast corners the car can be placed well but the driver feels that…

14 min.
hot tubs

A racecar’s monocoque is one of its single most complex components, a blending of advanced engineering and artisan skills Under the skin of any modern racecar, at least of the Sports Prototype or formula variety, is the tub, or monocoque. A multi-functional component that must fulfil many design requirements, some of which are diametrically opposed. Its primary role is to fill the void between the front suspension and the engine, providing sufficient structural stiffness for said suspension to operate correctly. At the same time, it must safely house the driver (to varying degrees of comfort, depending on the application), the fuel cell and, as is increasingly the case, an energy storage system (ESS) for either an electric or hybrid drivetrain. Additionally, the tub must be as light as possible, while also having as…