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 .
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 .
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 .
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 .
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.
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) .
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 (formula1techandart.wordpress.com)
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
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.
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 .
- First sight: Ferrari Revised Mugello Exhaust (scarbsf1.wordpress.com)