How to copy a front wing

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At the beginning of the season, Ferrari came up with a double plane front wing. The upper planes were however attached to the nosecone by flexible joints, causing much controversy and the demand to chance the design. As the wing was found legal in after the changes, other teams started investigating the idea and Renault came up with a similar design at Hockenheim. This time around it's Williams who have seemingly copied the Renault design in terms of the upper planes and their curvy connections to the nose cone. The upper plane in all these specifications is meant to decrease drag by actually helping the lower plane elements. The suction effect under the upper plane helps air to move over the lower plane, making the direction changes of the airflow smoother.


By DaveKillens on 04-10-2006 at 15:19

This front plane seems to be very thin close to the nose structure. The last 10 to 20 cm probably has very little aero benefits, they are there most likely for structural support. We have seen planes like this on many other cars, but instead of the plane extending from the wing endplate to the nose structure, it only goes half way, or two thirds of the distance to the nose. Then a vertical strut provides the structural support.
With the weird curve before contact with the nose structure, three issues are dealt with. First, the aero-messy strut is eliminated, cleaning up that part of the wing structure and allowing better airflow without any turbulence creating device. Secondly, the curve of the plane means the plane meets the nose section at a right angle. This makes for a more efficient aero design, and eliminates the complications of having to add fairings or anything to deal with the more complicated airflow.
Third, the pronounced curve makes for a structure that could easily flex. The old Ferrari controversy over their strut was that when viewed by the onboard camera, the plane flexed horizontally, sort of in and out. With a curve we see on the Renault, that kind of movement is possible, it\'s just that the curved area of the plane flexes.

By ketanpaul on 04-10-2006 at 18:10

I am dont have much tech knowledge but the upper part is pushing the air down and the lower part pushing the air doesnt that cause a very disturbed air pattern?

By ketanpaul on 04-10-2006 at 18:10

I dont have much tech knowledge but the upper part is pushing the air down and the lower part pushing the air doesnt that cause a very disturbed air pattern?

By joseff on 04-10-2006 at 18:54

Plus, the inner part (near the nose) of the new upper plane has a positive angle of attack (like ferrari\'s monza nose winglets)

By DaveKillens on 05-10-2006 at 17:29

The inner part of the upper plane (where it attaches to the nose and is also very curved) is very low chord, and must have negligable effect on aero. Only near the endplates does it have substantial chord, where it makes itself felt.

By Lightspeed on 07-10-2006 at 16:58

And what makes you think Williams did not come up with this on their own ?

Its similarity might only be a coincidence.

By DaveKillens on 07-10-2006 at 17:44

Maybe a coincidence, but not likely. The time frame indicates Renault had this system many races before Williams. Whenever any team reveals anything new, all the other teams explore that concept and implimentation. It\'s a fundamental part of the fast paced development in Formula One. Sometimes it\'s a red herring, forcing other teams to spend money, time, and resources on a dead end. But usually, if it works, it finds application on other teams.
Just about everything you see in and on a Formula One car was discovered by one team, and copied by the rest. Wings, endplates, high nose, bargeboards, sidepods, airboxes, diffusers, all started with just one team\'s introduction.
As well, BMW has now started to use a very similar wing device on their airbox, something McLaren has had for all season.

By Tp on 11-10-2006 at 15:53

Well it was actually Sauber who first tested this design back in 2005. But the designs this year are vastly more complex.

By Saribro on 11-10-2006 at 19:11

Indeed: ... po_129.jpg

relatively straightforward design.

By m3_lover on 14-10-2006 at 08:26

I thought Renault introduced this at San Marino in 2005

By Saribro on 14-10-2006 at 20:36

not over the full width of the wing, no. the same partial winglets they started 2006 with.

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