What is Aerodynamic in Formula One?

What is Aerodynamic in Formula One? - Formula 1

Concept that revolutionized the F1 some years ago and leave in second plane the power that motors give to the car in the asphalt. Let’s start defining it by parts …

  • Load: That thing that generates weight or pressure with respect to another, or to the structure that is transported.

  • Aerodynamics: Part of the mechanics that studies the movement of gases over parked bodies and the behavior of things that move in the air.

If we go back to the history of this concept that has completely revolutionized transport systems and naturally to the great Formula 1, we can mention two great characters:

  • Giovanni Battista Venturi: Creator of the “Venturi effect” which is based on hydrodynamics and that a moving fluid inside a closed duct decreases its pressure by increasing the velocity after passing through a smaller section area.
    If at this point in the conduit the end of another conduit is introduced, aspiration of the fluid contained in this second conduit occurs.

  • Henri Coandă: A pioneer of modern aerodynamics who performed a series of flow experiments to discover what was eventually called the “Coandă effect” whose objective is the analysis of a series of events that describe the behavior of a fluid at Impact with a surface.

But how do we apply these effects to Formula One?

The Venturi effect is best known in Formula 1 as a floor effect and translates the “closed conduit” already mentioned in the space between the floor of the chassis and the asphalt as such.

That is, the engineers are looking to create a high pressure zone above the car and a low pressure underneath it, pushing the vehicle against the ground and we know it much better under the concept of “Downforce.”

On the other hand, the Coandă effect is more focused on improving the design of a car in order to improve the flow at all times through wings, endplates, diffusers, etcetera. Hence an F1 will be faster as the air flows through the whole car.

Every year, in the month of February during the preseason we see cars with yellow spots throughout its length. But beyond its color? What are they? What are they for?
Well, the answer is paraffin which is a fluid that imitates the air and whose goal is to leave marks on the car so that the team can see if the air flows as it should, that is, as originally conceived in the wind tunnel.

Theoretically, the formula one is completely the opposite of an airplane, fly?, yes, but crushed against the ground.
It is said that a car is capable of overcoming the Earth’s pulling force; That is, if we put a formula one inverted in a kind of ceiling at maximum speed will surely continue there as long as the downforce is greater than gravity by the speed factor.

Surely, we wonder, that force that crushes has no negative effects on cars?
Of course it has them, mainly in the tires that must withstand all that load generated in curves at high speeds, because the total weight of the car multiplies several times in the action. Thats why the tires of an F1 last much less than those of normal cars.

Now, if we put a normal person to handle a formula one out of nothing without any training would be ridiculed in the first fast curve or strong braking, because we do not have the necessary strength (neck, torso) to finish by putting up with all the Forces mentioned above.

In conclusion, we have already talked about the aerodynamic beasts that are stuck to the ground, but which of those that take advantage of these effects to fly through the air?

One fact: The world’s fastest aircraft stopped operating in 1998, its name? SR-71 “Black Bird” its speed? Mach 3 (3540 km / h).The speeds change too much between ground and air due to the resistance of each medium separately. The concept of aerodynamics is fascinating and more if we apply it to our passion: motorsports!

I hope you liked this article.