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Mercedes W04 – winter testing (pre season) tech summary


Mercedes W04 SV Jerez 18 F

Chassis :  W04

Engine : Mercedes-Benz FO 108F

 

    The new W04 has higher mirrors to improve rear view , redesigned  airbox zone, reshaped sidepods, reworked  thermal management, multiple chassis vanes ala Ferrari, Coanda exhausts, a more traditional DRS, a more aggressively packaged rear end, a circular modesty panel on the nose and retains the front push rod suspension refusing to follow Ferrari and Mac laren example .

Winter testing updates :

     At least three different rear wing specs were tested , one combined with a blown wing system to cut drag very similar to the one seen last season . A more complicated front wing also hit track  while the exhaust zone  also been reconstructed to ensure a better heat protection .

EVALUATION :

Aerodynamic performance :  guarantee a predictable car and very promising on development

Speed :.  Very fast on low fuel

Tyres management  :   problems rises on long runs but by far in a better shape than last season

Reliability  :  insignificant overheating issues , good but still questionable

 

Mercedes W04 FW Jerez 14 F

The new front wing is now 5 planed 

2013 F1 cars – Nose Fairing patterns

February 19, 2013 1 comment

 

        Despite the fact that FIA attempted to discourage teams from exploiting the nose fairing and gaining aero advantage over it, many teams bypassed the regulations spirit and developed elegant structures both to gain  improved airflow over the nose and keep the weight penalty due to the added fairing as low as possible . To be honest this was something more than expected as many changes caused the opposite effect than the wanted    one, with the recent ban of the blown diffuser to be the best example. The only team which does not need a fairing is Marussia because of its low chassis .

       Ferrari, Mc Laren, Force India, Williams and Toro Rosso followed a conservative pattern as shown in the illustration below

Ferrari , Mc Laren , Force India , Toro RossoA full cover from stepped point to the nose tip , highlighted in orange color .

Ferrari , Mc Laren , Force India, Williams , Toro Rosso
A full cover from stepped point to the nose tip , highlighted in orange color .

 

         Sauber developed a unique “ Π ” shaped fairing to create a deep channel on top of  the nose, separating the air stream flowing over the nose with the one flowing at sides .

Sauber - Π concept

Sauber – Π concept

 

   Red Bull’s dwarf fairing is an outcome of the desire to limit the fairing dimensions to the minimum required for opted aero efficiency so as to keep the extra weight as low as possible .

Red Bull - dwarf fairing

Red Bull – dwarf fairing

 

    Mercedes evolved further last season arched nose . Instead of being flat at the top it has an intense arched shape and a more smooth  bulkhead height  transition . This is to reduce drag by diverting the air flowing above the nose tip towards the  nose sides while the main flow is channeled smoothly over the bulkhead  , all aiming lower drag production . The optical result of this pattern resembles to a duck nose .

Mercedes - duck fairing

Mercedes – duck fairing

 

 

       Finally Caterham and  Lotus  rejected the possibility of fixing a weight costly fairing and instead developed a sculpted chassis on top, thus forming a smoother airpath for drag cut . However Caterham features a deeper and a more obvious sculpted area than Lotus does .

Caterham and Lotus - sculpted chassis

Caterham and Lotus – sculpted chassis

 

 

        It is of high possibility to see teams developing further their initial idea or even coping rivals patterns . It is good to remember that the nose fairing,  as all new designs, needs to be examined and studied further , unless FIA decides to make regulations even stricter .

 

 

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