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GP Week : Issue 39
> F1TECH> Ferrari rear diffuser BRAWN GP’s interpretation of the revised diffuser regulations is highly innovative. Much of the diffuser’s central section is actually lower than the outer sections. However, clever shaping of the rear crash structure immediately below the rear light effectively creates a second central section (upper red arrow – diagram below, left). In combination, the result is a central section that exceeds the 175mm height allowance that applies to the diffuser alone. This in fact provides a second venturi channel that helps in terms of air extraction from underneath the car This diffuser dramatically differs from the ‘standard’one, as, say, on the Ferrari. Here the central section is the same height as the side sections, to a maximum of 175mm. The central section contains a single inclined profile, as the teams who have protested claim is within the ‘spirit’of the rule. The use of the more radical diffuser as used by the Brawn, Toyota and Williams Elsewhere ... WHILE the diffuser stole the engineering limelight, the Brawn BGP001 has many other interesting design elements which illustrate the accurate design process undertaken and clever interpretation of the aero regulations. The front wing and nose cone are a clear example. In detail, the endplates of the front wing (1) are not in a single piece – instead they are made up of two separate elements with the foremost one, diverting the airflow outside, impacting the wing, to reduce dramatically the turbulence generated. Mounted on top of the main profile is an interesting double winglet (2), curved upwards, capable of increasing the downforce in this area, but at the same time working together with the endplates. In this way, the airflow that will impact against the flap will not be disrupted by any turbulence generated in this area. An interesting, though tiny, element is represented by a narrow spoiler (3) placed on both sides of the nosecone, whose function is to split the airflow in two parts, in order to divert it towards the sidepod inlets in a more efficient way, to improve the cooling capabilities of the car. Ferrari F60 rear wing slit It is the small details that matter in Formula 1. In particular wings may not only differ in relation to their profiles, but also in small changes that are absolutely relevant. Ferrari introduced a completely new rear wing for Melbourne, that features a central slit in the middle of its main profile. This solution is not completely new to Formula 1 as it was seen last year on the Toyota. Its function is to improve the efficiency of the diffuser by helping the extraction of the air from underneath the car. This happens thanks to the fact that the airflow passing through the slit increases its speed and pressure, so it accelerate the remaining flow exiting from the central section of the diffuser and helps its extraction. 15 cars, is capable of providing a performance advantage around three to five-tenths of a second per lap, on the evidence to date. It is unlikely that, in case the protesting teams lose their appeal (April 14), they will be in a position to introduce a similar system of their own before the first European races, in Spain, on May 10. Most difficult to ‘convert’will be the Red Bull. Its pull-rod rear suspension will need complete redesigning to create the space for such a development.