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Ferrari F2012 – Middle zone updates at China


Launch spec

Launch spec

 

       The F2012 had already received  several front wing updates before China , thus meaning that  some parts of the car should be re-examined to cope better with new aerodynamic elements .

 China- racing spec ,  old bargeboards and turning vanes are shown in the inset , the yellow arrows present the exact spots were changes took place .

China- racing spec , old bargeboards and turning vanes are shown in the inset , the yellow arrows present the exact spots were changes took place .

The first step to this direction was taken at China where new turning vanes and bargeboards replaced the old ones . The new turning vanes had a reshaped sharper end with  an additional vertical fin, while the bargeboard gained a winglet close to the turning vanes. Furthermore the large triangular chassis vane was replaced by more elegant double winglets spotted just behind the mirror, aiming to reduce further the amount of lift created by the sidepods .

 China – tested only ,the new double chassis winglets were tested even without the rest updates

China – tested only ,the new double chassis winglets were tested even without the rest updates

The new chassis winglets were even tested with the old turning vanes-bargeboards,  giving the impression that Ferrari was sure on their positive effect but had doubts on the rest updates .

 

 

 

Ferrari F2012 – color change on nose pillars since Mugello


        A minor livery change occurred at Mugello. Particularly the nose pillars adopted since then a semi black color , bringing into memory the old  black-red livery that Ferrari used to race many years ago  .

      Speaking for Ferrari’s livery ,it changed from a red-black livery in 1990’s to a red-white in 2000’s, then into a full red one (2007) to return back to red-white recently. It gives me a clue to expect  next year black colored front and rear wing flaps .

 

“Ventalia” type front wing on Ferrari F2012 –updates up to Hungary


      By the GP of Hungary Ferrari introduced at least 7 different front wing specs . The major wing revisions came alongside with extensive changes on the car reflecting the team’s will to erase the race pace handicap shown from early winter testing between the F2012 and the top cars (McLaren , Red Bull , Mercedes or even Lotus) . However some minor changes took place independently .

        The most striking feature of all concepts is the multiple flap design close to the endplates . At past Mc Laren raced with four or even five flapped wings but those concepts were abandoned due to revised 2009 technical rules . However slots on flaps are still allowed , a freedom which Ferrari took advantage to the maximum and opened a new era that I  call “a Ventalia” type design.

Spec : A           Debut : Launch      Raced : Australia , Malaysia
The most striking feature on the launch spec is the multiple slotted flap pattern that transforms the two flap concept into an effective four profiled .The gains in not only higher amount of downforce but also making the wing less sensitive to stall .

Spec: B                                                                                                                 Debut:pre season test at Barcelona on March                                  Raced:Not yet
It was obvious that lack of sufficient front downforce was among the major bugs of the new car that had to be solved .Thus a major wing update came at the third pre season test . The new wing had completely redesigned flaps including a different way the flaps attach to the endplate , triple slotted main flap and a large gurney tab pointed in green arrow. Modifications occurred also on cascades winglets and endplates which featured ducts to redirect air inside the wing area(all changes marked in yellow) . A more detailed look on the endplates reveals the strategy of Ferrari to redirect the lower flow inside the front tyres through the ducts while the upper flow is pushed away to the outer tyre surface .It is good to remember that Mc Laren curved the path of ducted endplates a few seasons ago .
The B spec was also tested at Malaysia and China . However the B version proved not suitable for the car needs thus never qualified to race .

Spec :C        Debut : China         Raced : Not yet
A modified B spec was brought at China lacking the large triangular gurney tab to benefit a greater top speed .

Spec : D         Debut : China , Raced : China , Bahrain
Ferrari raced in China with another new spec which included apart from the gurney tab lack , revised endplates and cascades ( in yellow) . The new upper deck has a deep cut close to the endplates to favor further drag cut .

Spec : D         Tested : Spain
It was also tested at Catalunya having a Santander logo addition on the endplates

Spec :E                  Debut: Mugello test on May                                     Raced: Spain, Monaco, Canada, Valencia, G.Britain,   Germany, Hungary
Mugello test was very fruitful for Ferrari as many new parts undergone evaluation testing , including new rear end , exhausts and a new front wing. Speaking for the front wing changes occurred on the wing sides and particularly the endplates. They may look similar at their lower part but the top is completely new , less curvy having a small horizontal triangular fin at the rear to improve airflow management close to the tyres . The top rear fin concept is not new but derives from older seasons .Moreover the cascade inner winglet adopted a new double profile and a revised trailing edge .Finally some modifications took place on the outer flap separator ( all changes are marked in yellow ) . Ferrari brought at Spain both E and D spec in order to perform a comparison test between the new and the old version.  Finally the nose pillars are half painted since in black carbon color .

Spec : F     Debut : Europe ( Valencia)      Raced : Not yet
This spec was tested at street circuit of Valencia , Silverstone and Hungaroring . It featured a new second flap which resembles more to launch spec , new flap separators and a deep cut on the triangular winglet of the endplate .The endplate itself inherited multiple ducts to enhance further the Ventalia concept efficiency .

Spec : G       Debut : Germany      Raced : Not yet
The latest update tested at Hochenheim and Hungaroring . It had modified endplates having even more ducts, five now instead of four , the cut on the winglet is gone and the flap separators gained a simpler appearance for both aero and mechanical reasons . Finally an extra slot was added on the second flap close to the endplates , increasing so the  effective profile of flaps from five to six !

 

Ferrari F2012 – New nose vanes at Mugello test


          Ferrari has introduced since Mugello test a new front end aero package with the nose cone no longer featuring the  L shaped vanes . As a consequence a new set has been transferred to the underbody of the chassis . Compared to the old units the new set is more complex and actually  consists of two elements with a curved upwards lower section , lacking also the  horizontal connecting winglet ( pointed in Alonso illustration via an arrow)  . Both versions are designed to boost the airflow underneath the raised front section of the chassis, but additionally the new set creates significant vortexes over the vertical axis aiming drag cut and a better flow to the diffuser  .

      Massa adopted right away the new set from the Spanish race after the Mugello test but instead Alonso continues to race ( up to Hungary) with the old ones . It is not the first time to observe Ferrari duo follow different development routes reflecting primary the difference between Alonso’s and Massa’s driving style . Alonso is manhandling the car squeezing the most out of it thus needing a very predictable car and probably the new vanes may have improved the overall aero performance but likely may have caused instability in certain conditions . Another example this season is the Red Bull drivers , Vettel and Webber (exhaust configuration difference this time) .

Ferrari F2012 – rear wing evolution from Monaco to Silverstone (including Mugello Test)


 

G spec – Debut : Mugello test on May , raced : Not yet
Notices : It is actually the wing raced in Spain (F spec) without the mini plane .Ferrari tested at least three new types of rear wing ( F ,G and H spec) at Mugello before the Spanish race .

H spec – Debut : Mugello test on May , raced : Not yet
Notices : It is actually the Spanish wing ( F spec) with a small vane on top of the endplate ( in yellow circle ) aiming drag cut . The endplate vanes featured since the Australian spec ( C spec ) force the air flowing at the outside surface of the endplate to follow a similar pattern with the air flowing inside them . When the two air-flows meet and mix at the trailing edge of the endplate will eventually create weaker vortexes favoring top speed .

I spec – Debut : Monaco , raced : Monaco
Notices : New wing for Monaco.It is actually a hybrid between the Australian ( C spec) and Spanish (F spec) wing . The second flap recovered the V-less profile while the gills reshaped curvy once more . The mini plane is also new having now a double profile, a wavy main flap and supports having the front edges to curl outwards, all to create more downforce ( the old mini plane  in inset) .

      Beyond Monaco Ferrari brought back the Spanish spec .Of course some adjustments on wing attack angle were made from race to race to suit better with each track special characteristics .

New rear wing at almost every race from Scuderia Ferrari


         Teams revise the car’s front and rear wings during season to make them function better. Any front wing revision is though  regarded more crucial because an optimization of air flow towards the central part of the car is offered additionally  . However over  the last seasons  all teams choose to develop more and more sophisticated rear wings. There are three key areas that teams usually work hard to improve . The upper part of endplates aiming drag reduction, secondly the flaps themselves to generate more downforce with the minimum possible drag and thirdly the lower part of the endplates to  improve the way diffuser functions . Very important also is the efficiency of the DRS , a factor added in the already complicated equation that aero designers have to solve since 2011 .

       Speaking for Scuderia Ferrari , solid steps made on rear wing development rate with the fruits of hard labor to deliver from Australia to Spain  at least  6   specs ( named below with capitals letters from A to F)  .  None wing, apart from the last F spec, was radically different from its ancestor but rather a modification so as to cope better with the rest numerous developments that have taken place on the car  (front wing, vanes, bargeboards, exhausts, diffuser). The different specs listed and analyzed below

A spec – Debut : Launch and early testing , raced : no
Notices : There are three air vents on endplate top surface , a V cut in the middle of the trailing edge of the second flap to cut and three flap fasteners

B spec – Debut : Barcelona test on March , raced : no
Notices : The V cut in the middle of the second flap vanished , there also new endplate bottoms to improve diffuser efficiency

C spec – Debut : Australia , raced : Australia and Malaysia
Notices : spoilers added on endplate outer surface

D spec – Debut : China , raced : China
Notices : there are new air vents which are four in number  and also more curved ,a new main plane , double V cuts on the trailing edge of the second flap and two flap fasteners instead of three

E spec – Debut : Bahrain , raced : Bahrain
Notices : mini plane addition to add downforce

F spec – Debut : Mugello test on May , raced : Spain
Notices : A rear wing of new breed with a new main profile and an upper flap to merge with the endplates featuring a different gilled pattern. The new air vents on the endplate are more in number and straight instead of curved like they did before .The vanes at endplate bottoms are now doubled in number from two to four while the beam wing is  raised in the middle section and wavy .The small cut at the point where the beam wing meats the endplate helps to decrease drag and even the rear light was reshaped to help the middle raised section to generate even more downforce .

Ferrari F2012 – Frenzy exhaust evolution


           From the very early testing, Ferrari understood that one of the weak spots of the F2012 was the exhausts. Due to new 2012 regulations all teams forced  to move away the exhaust outlets from the floor level .However the ardent desire to take advantage of the exhaust blown effect yet remained strong and thus Ferrari  designed the exhausts to blow through the zone between the rear wing endplates and the wheel . The hot emissions bent progressively downwards as they travel to the rear of the car and seal the diffuser sides improving its efficiency . Another interesting thing is the common bodywork opening for exhaust pipes and radiators cooling exit .

        At least  nine different configurations tested  from Launch to Melbourne and are all summarized in the illustration above  . The launch exhaust abandoned very quickly because it caused tarnished dots on the bodywork around the exhaust outlets,indicating overheating .Since then the exhaust zone suffered several changes before Melbourne . The revisions that took place include :

–              Horizontally cut exhaust pipes ( specs  B, C and D )

–              Cuts on the bodywork ( specs C, D, E, F, G and H )  to both improve cooling and the strengthen the  downwash effect of the emissions

–              Carbon heat protective patches on the bodywork ( specs C, D, F, G, H and I )

–              Shifting of the exhaust outlet angle initially upwards and then inwards

      First steps in exhausts evolution  obliged the team to even place carbon heat shields on the bottom outer surface of the rear wing endplates for protection. Finally numerous thermometer stickers placed  on the suspension wishbones and car body to investigate overheating issues displayed by each different exhaust system tested.

Jerez test on February
visualization of gas flow in red,
yellow arrows point out the thermometer stickers

Jerez test on February
smaller heat shield

     The target for Ferrari with this continuous and frenzy exhaust evolution was  cooling improvement, car protection from heat and rear down-force gains .Nevertheless the quest of extra more never fades away .

 

 

 

 

Ferrari F2012 – diffuser update before Melbourne stays in the shadow


Launch spec

Ferrari tried a modified diffuser before Melbourne but the new diffuser is not  yet raced so far ( up to Bahrain) . It features an arched roof above the two large vertical fences ( enclosed by a yellow circle in the illustration below), a design concept origins from Red Bull RB6 ( 2010 car) .

Barcelona test on March

The team exploits the vortexes spilled by the V shaped  areas of the roof  to prevent any mixing  between the flow coming out from the centre  zone with the flow coming out from the side  tunnels of the diffuser .Of course absolute prevention of mixing is not possible to happen but the lesser degree it takes place the more efficient the diffuser becomes .

Ferrari F2012 – Cooling (Launch to Malaysia)


 

   F2012 before Melbourne inherited a set of gills at sidepod ending and a new larger hot air outlet of gearbox radiator  . At Sepang cockpit gills were added to improve the cooling efficiency of the car  and a rectangular duct in front of the cockpit  to cool down the driver .

cockpit gills for Sepang

 

nose duct to feed cockpit with fresh air

Ferrari F2012 – Born RED but….not a BULL


Side view comparison

          The F2012 , coded 663 project , looks at first glance really ugly but Ferrari what needs in 2012 is to see the ugly duckling being transformed into a swan on track . Besides Formula 1 is not a beauty contest but still  a crown and glamour wait for the victorious ones . The new car is an aggressive evolution of F150o , thus only a few parts from the previous car had been carried over the new one . Therefore mechanics in technical office and in production  had to work harder than usual to get the work done in time .

     The team announced that an aggressive development program is followed and upgrades of components  are expected for the third test and first race of season .

 

Front zone details

        The new technical regulations for 2012 aim to lower the nose cone height for safety reasons and are responsible for the bizarre stepped nose shaping of F2012  .

 

The maximum dimensions allowed by 2012 technical regulations are shown above  

          Ferrari exploited the chassis and nose cone dimensions to the largest limit . The nose starts 450 mm wide (point A) and gets narrower where the nose box meets the chassis (point B , named also bulkhead  ) , being only 300 mm wide . Then the nose drops down steeply to meet the maximum height of  550 mm at a distance of 150 mm ahead of  point B . After the point C the nose becomes wider till the nose tip (easily noticed on top view image) in order to allow the maximum possible quantity of air to flow under the nose . So the goal to retain a rich flow underneath the nose box under new regulations gave birth to the stepped nose structure for 2012 which is also called by some authors “crocodile” nose . Crocodile term was also used some years ago to describe the very thin Mc Laren nose tip and thus a confusion might rise between the two designs which bear no similarity other than the name .

   Top view comparison

 Some other significant characteristics of the front zone are the following :

      – The very wide nose pillars , inherited by F150o , help to isolate the flow directed under the nose box from the air flowing over the wing flaps which is dirtier and harder to exploit . The pillars are connected via a horizontal flap acting as a flow stabilizer , similar to the one used to connect the nose vanes in F150 .

       – The nose vanes resemble a lot to the ones featured by F150 and are within 2012 regulations provided they do not extend below the reference plane set by the front wing endplates . More efficient omes similar to  Renault’s R30 – 2010 might be seen at Jerez test in a few days .

    – There is a small duct under the chassis to cool nose electronics and even the driver himself . Ducts in front of the cockpit are frequently used by many teams to cool the cockpit zone especially in hot conditions . Under chassis duct could be even more efficient because it receives a stronger airflow and leaves the area in front of the cockpit cleaner .

    –  The laser sensor to record the car’s ride height is a must on all modern F1 cars

 

Front wing

        The front wing that will be seen on first test at Jerez  is an evolution of the one introduced in the last three races of last season . It is going to be further developed at the third pre season  test .

Sidepods – Radiator inlets – Exhausts

 

         Radiators inlets resemble more to F10’s , having a quarter circle shape different from the boxy shape of  F150o’s .

      The sidepod tunnels are even more sculpted at their bottoms and end to a slimmer coke bodywork due to repackaging of the chassis and engine rear part , the narrower gearbox and the shifting of the hot air exits to the back ala Red Bull style .

      Central body aero elements such as sidepod panels and bargeboards are also new .

 

     Periscope style exhaust are imposed by 2012 regulations so F2012 exhaust outlets are located inside sidepod extensions to the rear and blow the rear brake duct zone. The solution  brings to memory the Mc Laren MP4/14-1999 car which featured elegant holes at analogous sidepod extension to allow hot air to exit and Prost AP02-1999 which had the exhausts blow in front of the rear wheels. Different exhaust positioning scenarios are still under investigation and will for sure be over season . I predict that some solutions involving tyre heating might also rise. We should not forget  Renault example a few years ago .

Engine cover

 

   The engine cover is literally wrapped around internal components like skin , thus some bulges can be seen on the smooth surface . The large funnel at the end is gone but likely it will be seen again among other cooling options .

Airbox zone

 

         Airbox zone is completely new . A triangular main inlet, which feeds the engine with air, replaced the previous circular to allow more air to reach the smaller inlet sitting behind. The second inlet was seen also on Mc Laren (MP4/26-2011) and Williams (FW32 2010) and feeds the gearbox radiator . The airbox zone is also sculpted further under the triangular inlet to minimize as possible the overall frontal surface .

Mirrors

 

  The mirrors are mounted higher to block less the flow over the sidepod surface . The small triangular fin under the mirror and in front of the radiator inlet has grown in size to maximize its ability to split air over the sidepods and towards the radiator .

Suspensions

 

   In an attempt to lower as possible the centre of gravity Ferrari changed to pull rod philosophy not only the rear suspension but for the front as well . It took Ferrari a lot of work to regain back all the desired mechanical characteristics offered by the former push rod configuration and team also believes that gained a small aerodynamic advantage out of the solution . Front pull rod configurations were seen again in F1 and particularly on Arrows and Minardi teams back in 2000 and 2001 respectively .

Wheels

          The crowned front and rear thicker rims are replaced by  more conventional designs .

Rear end

 

     There is a new narrower gearbox casing and a relocation of some mechanical components . Part of the radiator cooling is hosted on top of the gearbox so as to reduce the cooling area required at the lateral part of the car .The diffuser was covered during the launch of the car to hide structure details .

 

KERS unit – Engine

 

    In 2011 top teams used special engine mappings that increased engine’s fuel consumption so as to blow more hot fumes on diffuser area when cornering to gain performance even when the driver had his foot of throttle  .  Thus with the ban of  EBD  ( exhaust blown diffuser ) and FIA control over engine mapping, the 2012 engine will be more fuel efficient .

     Another change is that engine was tuned in 2011 to work with very long exhaust pipes placed directly inside the floor . 2012 periscope exhaust pipes are by far shorter and so the engine had to be retuned once again , but that was not a problem because analogous periscope exhausts were raced with the same Ferrari engine back in 2009. Furthermore the current engines were once designed bearing in mind the periscope exhausts length .

    The KERS components maintain their low central location in the car for safety and packaging reasons . The 2012 unit undergone an update to save weight and improve the efficiency of individual components .

 

 

Ferrari F2012 – technical specs


 

.Chassis – F2012

  • Carbon-fibre and honeycomb composite structure
  • Gearbox: Ferrari longitudinal gearbox
  • Differential: Limited-slip differential
  • Command: Semiautomatic sequential electronically controlled gearbox – quick shift
  • Number of gears: 7 +Reverse
  • Brakes: Brembo ventilated carbon-fibre disc brakes
  • Suspension: Independent suspension, pull-rod activated torsion springs front and rear
  • Weight with water, lubricant and driver: 640 kg
  • OZ Wheels (front and rear): 13″

.Engine

 

  • Type: 056
  • Number of cylinders: 8
  • Cylinder block in sand cast aluminium: V 90°
  • Number of valves: 32
  • Pneumatic distribution
  • Total displacement: 2398 cm3
  • Piston bore: 98 mm
  • Weight: >95 kg
  • Electronic injection and ignition
  • Fuel: Shell V-Power
  • Lubricant: Shell Helix Ultra
 
 
credit : Scuderia Ferrari
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