F1 2010: Ride height adjustments during pit stops

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autogyro
autogyro
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Re: Red Bull RB6

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In the 1980s I was involved with some experimental work with electrolitic fluids.
These were fluids designed to change viscosity when an electric current is passed through them. At that time the application was for clutches in transmissions and direct engagement clutches, although damping and ride height was briefly looked into.
Of course for F1 this would be an 'active' system.

I do not believe that the 'custard' idea would have sufficient energy within the chemical reaction to work in this high load application.

Designing a pasive system within a damper is easy anyway and IMO would still be within the regulations even with gas under pressure as a control force.
If the teams cannot figure this out, then it proves to me just how dominating the aero aspect of F1 is and just how desperate a change is needed to limit DF, so as a sensible competitive balance can again be achieved.

autogyro
autogyro
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Re: F1 2010: Ride height adjustments during pit stops

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You do not need any outside energy source gambler.
A gas under pressure does help make the system work more efficiently and cooler however just like conventional damping.

avatar
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Re: Red Bull RB6

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autogyro wrote:In the 1980s I was involved with some experimental work with electrolitic fluids.
These were fluids designed to change viscosity when an electric current is passed through them. At that time the application was for clutches in transmissions and direct engagement clutches, although damping and ride height was briefly looked into.
Of course for F1 this would be an 'active' system.
That's cool. I believe some road cars are now using electrolitics for the ride stiffness changes in "sport" buttons etc.
autogyro wrote: I do not believe that the 'custard' idea would have sufficient energy within the chemical reaction to work in this high load application.
I haven't really looked into the fluids available, though I think you're right about custard (cornflour based fluid) itself, there may be some suitable materials out there. That said, both vibration & G-force are likely to make the fluid more viscous and that would need to be accounted for in setup.
autogyro wrote: Designing a pasive system within a damper is easy anyway and IMO would still be within the regulations even with gas under pressure as a control force.
If the teams cannot figure this out, then it proves to me just how dominating the aero aspect of F1 is and just how desperate a change is needed to limit DF, so as a sensible competitive balance can again be achieved.
I figured this might be the case. Using a valve on/in the damper that restricts flow under pressure would provide similar effects & be more tunable, but my inspiration came from custard, so I thought I'd share...

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ringo
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Re: F1 2010: Ride height adjustments during pit stops

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from james Allen:

Interview with Paddy Lowe
“This was to stop people changing springs and ride heights,” according to Lowe. “Where this has got a little bit tricky is that you can design suspensions that self adjust during that period. There are all sorts of physical means to do that. Imagine a suspension where without any human intervention it changes its set up. You could argue that as you haven’t touched it, it’s not been changed. But what the FIA have now clarified is that even if you don’t touch it, if you have programmed it to change you have effectively made a change of set up.

“They will inspect the cars (in China) and look at what equipment is there and how it works,” in light of the new clarification.
http://www.jamesallenonf1.com/

Basically the FIA makes it clear the suspension cannot be touched, but not only that i cannot be programed to move on it's own.
However i still think there are ways around this with the fuel tank adjuster. The suspension is not programed, it only has a direct relationship to the sprung mass, which is typical of any suspension system.
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ringo
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Re: F1 2010: Ride height adjustments during pit stops

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some more:
“We got the feeling we were rather late to the game, relative to some others.” said Lowe. “We don’t know if anyone has been racing anything in the nature of ride height control systems. We definitely got the feeling that others were further advanced in development.”
All in all, i believe that even if a team does not have an adjustable suspension; they do have some interesting suspension dynamics. I think i put a silly drawing of a redbull car where the car pitches down as the ride height increases. This is one idea, but there could be other very ingenious ideas used by the teams to get the most out of qualifying and the race aerodynamically.
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bill shoe
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Re: F1 2010: Ride height adjustments during pit stops

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Thoughts on F1 ride height control, circa April 2010.

I posted before the season began that-

* Ride height control would be very important in 2010 due to light fuel qualifying and heavy fuel racing with no adjustments allowed in between.

* Initial pitstops are too late. The step change in fuel load occurs between qualifying and the race.

* It is possible to keep ride height consistent with different fuel loads.

* This approach was not just theory. It already exists. A typical example was a Nivomat, a passive damper that’s mass produced for road vehicles.

* I explained how the system complies with all (non-contradictory) 2010 FIA regulations. The system also complies with the spirit of the rules in the sense that it’s not an active suspension or a driver aid.

I think this was good analysis. I was ahead of the situation at F1 Technical and, apparently, at most F1 teams.

Ride height control has obviously become an important issue in 2010. James Allen mentions engineer estimates that 1mm ride height is worth 0.1 sec per lap. The extra ride height needed for full vs qualifying fuel is around 3 or 4 mm. So ride height control is worth 0.3 to 0.4 sec per lap in qualifying, and a similar amount late in the race.

The FIA has now decided that ride height control is “likely” illegal because it violates article 3.15. This article says “any specific part of the car influencing its aerodynamic performance” must comply with bodywork rules and therefore be rigidly fixed to the car. If 3.15 was consistently applied it would ban all suspension. However, other articles require suspension, so the articles are contradictory.

3.15 is a catch-all rule that allows the FIA to ban things it is uncomfortable with. I have some sympathy for the FIA as they try to apply the letter of the rules to maintain the spirit of the rules. I don’t understand why they think ride height control violates the spirit of the rules. Again, it’s not active suspension or a driver aid. Meanwhile, active aero F-ducts are allowed precisely because they are driver controlled. Go figure.

Rule re-interpretations over the last few years relating to tire shoulder wear or mass dampers have had pretty clear political overtones. I don’t see any political equivalent for the ride height control issue, so that’s a big improvement.

It will be interesting to see if Red Bull continues their strong qualifying pace, and if their cars are still so high in parc ferme that the undertray scrapes the leading edge of the rear tires. If so, then what are they doing?

Thanks for the great discussion on this thread.

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ringo
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Re: F1 2010: Ride height adjustments during pit stops

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I want to know why the splitter scrapes the ground in the turns, that's what i wanna know!
No explanations yet.
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f1ar
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Re: F1 2010: Ride height adjustments during pit stops

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First of all, sorry if this has been posted before, didn´t read the whole thread.

Just an idea, but what if you control the damper´s fluid reservoir temperature via the driver (ala F-duct so to speak) to control its pressure hence altering the car´s ride height? would that be legal?

You can, for example, duct air from the sidepod to the dampers and have a driver controlled valve, make the air pass through the exhaust and warm it up as desired. I know ride height is quite sensitive and it must be hard to control it this way, but maybe it´s workable. What do you guys think?

marcush.
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Re: F1 2010: Ride height adjustments during pit stops

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the whole springs and damper layout and setup is dominated by aero considerations since a long time ago ,in fact since the days of wingcars which produced so much df that you needed rock hard springs.
Also changing attitude of the car in terms of rake (flat or nose up at maximum speed
back up in slow corners and braking areas is really nothing new in F1.
It is not desireable to have a non moving platform ,it is desireable to have the optimum rake in all situations,especially for those who have big changes of downforce AND big movements of COP with changing rideheights fronmt and rear.
So with these Aero device discusssions all current suspension springs and Dampers is effectively aero and is therefore illegal.
Also ,putting in fuel(burning fuel is adjusting ride height ....also prohibitied?

the rules as they are cannot govern the situation ,thats my impression.

pgj
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Re: F1 2010: Ride height adjustments during pit stops

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Could the RBR system be as simple as variable springs and variable dampers (I,
J or K type)?

It does not answer ringo's question though as this system might rise when downforce is reduced when cornering.
Williams and proud of it.

Richard
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Re: F1 2010: Ride height adjustments during pit stops

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bill shoe wrote:It will be interesting to see if Red Bull continues their strong qualifying pace, and if their cars are still so high in parc ferme that the undertray scrapes the leading edge of the rear tires. If so, then what are they doing?
Isn't that because the fuel tank is empty so the car is very high? That doesn't prove anything. How does the RB ride height in parc ferme compare to other cars?

If a team was running a Nivomat damper (or similar ride height control)then you would expect the car to be low when it came into parc ferme from the track.

What we need to see are pics that show ride height at critical moments:
  • As soon as the car comes into parc ferme (empty tank, lowered height)
  • After the car has been standing in parc ferme overnight (to see if it mysteriously changes in height)
  • On the grid when cold (full of fuel, would ride height control not be active after a single out lap?)
  • On the grid after the formation lap (ride height control should have taken effect)
Last edited by Richard on Wed Apr 14, 2010 11:38 am, edited 1 time in total.

DaveW
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Re: F1 2010: Ride height adjustments during pit stops

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pgj wrote:Could the RBR system be as simple as variable springs and variable dampers (I,
J or K type)?
Please forgive the dumb question, but what are I, J, & K type dampers?

Richard
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Re: F1 2010: Ride height adjustments during pit stops

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By the way, there are interesting parallels with the ground effect cars in 1981. Lotus designed a very clever sprung system, the other teams opted for a up/down switch!

IFAIK that's why we have the rules about sprung mass need to be firmly attached, and also the suspension can only move due to forces exerted by the wheels.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lotus_88

You can also read about it in Peter Wright's own words ... http://www.grandprix.com/ft/ftpw021.html
Last edited by Richard on Wed Apr 14, 2010 4:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

pgj
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Re: F1 2010: Ride height adjustments during pit stops

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DaveW wrote:
pgj wrote:Could the RBR system be as simple as variable springs and variable dampers (I,
J or K type)?
Please forgive the dumb question, but what are I, J, & K type dampers?
http://www.f1technical.net/features/10586

http://www.racecar-engineering.com/arti ... -work.html

http://www.engineerlive.com/Design-Engi ... %27/20573/

Hope this helps. I and K dampers were, broadly speaking, a variation on a theme.
Williams and proud of it.

DaveW
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Re: F1 2010: Ride height adjustments during pit stops

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pgj wrote:Hope this helps. I and K dampers were, broadly speaking, a variation on a theme.
Many thanks, pgj. Actually, inerters are not dampers (not intentionally, at least), & I had forgotten McLaren's distracting code name. It clearly worked on my small mind....

... & I don't think they would help for ride height control, unless they incorporated a ratchet mechanism (like a bicycle free-wheel). I can't think that would be free of other issues, however.