Formula One car development blog

Williams use lower rear wing at Spa

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Spa-Francorchamps is the first medium downforce track on the 2009 calendar, so teams are coming up with smaller rear and front wings to reduce drag and increase top speeds. Williams for one is special, as it didn't only make its rear wing smaller, it is now also lower.

The arrow in the image clearly shows that the main flap is not extending to the maximum height - which is the upside of the end plate - by a few centimeters below. The solution puts the wing slightly more behind the c... Read more

Williams carefully improve floor efficiency

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Because of a considerable simplification of upper bodywork, the aerodynamicists at Williams are spending a lot of time to investigate the efficiency of the car's underbody. It is well known the this part of the car can bring a lot of downforce with a low drag penalty. For the same reason, the team developed their double step diffuser which reportedly is good for 15% more downforce compared to the simple designs that follow 'the spirit of the rules'.

More at the front though, at the ... Read more

Williams improve rear wing efficiency

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Development is still going on at a devastating pace ahead of Melbourne, and Williams have come up with a new solution to optimise the airflow around the driver's helmet. This area is well known for being 'trouble', hence lots of progress can still be made there. The new solution somewhat resembles the famous BMW Sauber 'towers' positioned ahead of the cockpit. On the FW31, the extensions aim to straighten airflow aside of the driver to better guide it towards the rear wing. Such des... Read more

Williams FW31's unique airbox inlet

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Williams' new FW31 is a very elegant design and ahead of schedule as the team started its development earlier than most of its rivals. One of these details is the addition of 2 air inlets - one on each side of the airbox - to catch cooling air for the hydraulics.

Last year, the team mimicked Ferrari's idea of splitting the airbox itself in two, but the team have now apparently found a better solution. The result is also that the main airbox inlet could now be made smaller, something... Read more