Archive for the ‘Mc Laren MP4/26A Mercedes’ Category

Mc Laren MP4/26A – Protecting the brakes

         In Melbourne Mc Laren covered both the front and rear brake ducts with wire netting to prevent debris from entering inside the braking components . The Melbourne track is a street circuit surrounding the man-made Albert Park Lake and the track surface  is full of small and dangerous materials ( stones , plant parts, rubbish etc ) that could cause malfunction to the braking system.

          The net covered ducts have not been abandoned since Melbourne , proving their value and are being used to protect against  toffee-like debris shed by Pirelli tyres  this time .


Mc Laren MP4/26A – New front wing in last winter test


Mc Laren tested a new front wing in last Winter test ( Barcelona ) to boost car’s performance and overcome the inability to challenge Red Bull and Ferrari . The new wing had totally new endplates (1) with a single huge slot  in contrast to the old one which had four smaller slots . The philosophy of this concept is to increase the quantity of air passing under the wing by trapping air flowing outside the endplate surface . The triangular fin at the top of the endplate is also removed while the rear of the endplate is altered to cope better with the new design . Finally the endplates are placed now a bit outer  on the endplate floor (2)  to increase the wing’s effective span .  As regards the flap separator (3) , it is now much shorter and traditional  because there is no need to house the flap adjusting mechanism any more .






Mc Laren MP4/26A – Front brakes

The multiple upward bending winglets on the brake surface help to reduce the turbulence created by the wheel rotation and increase aerodynamic stability . The brake duct itself is very narrow but quite long to provide enough cooling to the brake components  but also to block less the air .

Brakes  usually undergo many revisions through the season according to each circuit braking special needs .

Mc Laren MP4/26A – Sidepod winglet addition


Mc Laren added a rectangular winglet  on both cockpit sides to smoothen the airflow passing over them and inside the U-channel created by the L-shaped sidepods and cockpit sides ,  reducing any unwanted turbulence . In the past we have seen similar winglets used by Mc Laren for the same cause but placed on nose sides , an area now unable to carry such winglets due to regulation restrictions .

To better understand the flow dynamics in real time conditions on this area mechanics even needed the use  of flourescent paint .

Mc Laren MP4/26A – Diffuser


Mc Laren MP4/26A not strangely tested till now a quite simple diffuser design because the team did not yet finalize its exhaust system  pipes regarding if they are to  blow forward or traditionally backwards . A simple diffuser would give simpler data to built upon any new developments , developments that would be bound to the way exhaust pipes blow the hot emissions .

The engine starter opening resembles a lot to the MP4/25 while there is  only a pair of vertical fences located in the middle of the side sections . Under the rear light  a larger tab was added  at Jerez to create a shadow of air behind it increasing diffuser sanction effect .  The endplates bottom are mounted onto diffuser roof via twisted outwards elements to divert air to the back of the rear wheels , a low pressure area , reducing drag .


Mc Laren MP4/26A – Studying front tyres performance


Mc Laren among other tasks at Jerez was also to examine carefully  the front tyres temperature variations . For that reason mechanics planted an infra red tyre sensor below the radiator inlet . Teams till now expressed  concerns about Pirelli tyres excessive ware and it is obvious that managing tyre performance balancing ware and optimum grip would give an advantage over rivals.

Mc Laren tries crown wheels at Jerez

February 14, 2011 1 comment

Jerez , February testing

Mc Laren is the first team to copy and test at Jerez the Ferrari’s innovative  crown front wheel rims (  presented last year by F10 and retained for the 2011 contender  F150th . This rim design helps to extract hot air from the brakes in such a way to disturb less the air flowing around the outer wheel surface improving air quality towards the rear . The main difference between  Mc Laren’s approach and Ferrari’s one is the number of the concentric rims , a single for the MP4/26 but double for the F10 and F150th .

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