Aerodynamic: Formula 1 – Report Example

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The paper "Aerodynamic: Formula 1" is a great example of a report on physics. Aerodynamics has over years been considered as the key to success within the Formula 1 sporting industry. The most important concerns to the modern aerodynamic designers have always been identified as minimization of drag through streamlining and creation of downforce to ensure the car does not veer off the track. The F1 evolution has therefore seen tremendous improvements on the ground effect as brought about by downforce optimization in as much as challenges have faced the F1 fraternity during the experimentation processes.

According to Formula 1 (2014), Aerodynamic downforce is identified as the force that is developed when air pressure acting at the car top is greater than that generated by air pressure at the bottom. In other words, when the air pressure at the top is less than that at the bottom, a formula 1 car is likely to generate a lift. Aerodynamic enthusiasts have developed aerofoils as part of the F1 cars in order to aid in speed improvements especially when negotiating corners considering the fact that vehicles lose a lot of time in the race due to the fact that they have to decelerate.

Downforce in Formula 1 is therefore realized due to the massive increment in pressure as a result of aerofoil inversion (Adams, 1993). This laboratory assignment, therefore, sought to investigate the speed increments that come with the introduction of aerofoils by utilizing such concepts as the coefficient of friction, centripetal force, angular acceleration, unit conversion, aerofoil lift, moments of forces, Newton’ s laws, scaling and dimensioning, estimation and problem-solving. The main objective of this laboratory report was to learn how to analyse and present information in a meaningful way and write a report suitable for presentation. Discussion In order to solve the problem on speed improvements brought about by the aerofoils mounted on Formula 1 cars, the following assumptions were put into consideration: The car will be travelling around a bend of the fixed radius of 50m, 100m, 200m and 500m. Car mass is 620kg. The centre of gravity is 2/3rds of the way back between the wheels, and 1/3rd of the height up from the ground. The maximum width of car = 1.8 m (this is defined by F1 regulations). The maximum height = 0.95m. The coefficients of friction between the tyres and the road were assumed as follows: Intermediate tyres in the dry: 0.7 Intermediate tyres in the wet: 0.4 Slicks in the dry: 0.9 Slicks in the wet: 0.1 According to the laboratory manual, the first problem was aimed at calculating the maximum speed of the car around the four bends radii without the aerofoils, i.e.

with no downforce for each of the four tyre conditions mentioned in the assumptions section above.

The equations below were derived with the aid of the video tutorials provided as part of the learning process involved. The first derivation is the centripetal force Fc which is defined as the force that keeps an object in circular motion (Georgia State University, 2014). This component is usually directed towards the centre of a circular path on which the motion is taking place. It is calculated by equation 1 below:

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