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Analysis - tech insights from Australia

21 Mar 2016

With the help of renowned technical illustrator Giorgio Piola, we take a look at some of the latest car developments and updates seen at the 2016 Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix...

McLaren TV camera mountings

Aerodynamic research is being pushed to extreme limits this year as teams look to eke out an advantage in a period of relative rules stability. The result is solutions like this one on McLaren’s MP4-31, where for the first time the team have added a slot (red arrow) to the nosecone’s camera mountings in order to better channel air to the central section of the car.


Ferrari front wing updates

For Melbourne Ferrari retained the new front wing introduced on the SF16-H at the final Barcelona test, with a slightly serrated first flap (red arrow), and a small vortex generator (black arrow) on the innermost vertical fin in the upper flap section, designed to better manage the large vortex generated by the front wing.


Toro Rosso S-duct

This drawing shows in detail the airflow (blue arrows) through the innovative S-duct on Toro Rosso’s STR11. The large NACA duct on the side of the nose feeds the vertical ramp (as on other teams’ machines) that allows air to pass from the side to the top of the nose. Meanwhile, the smaller NACA duct on the base of the nose (immediately below the large duct) allows air inside the chassis, probably for the purpose of cooling electronics boxes.


Ferrari rear suspension

Ferrari have retained the usual pull-rod configuration for their 2016 car's rear suspension, but its placement has been changed to allow for easier access via the removal of just a small section of the engine cover. The drawing above highlights the differences between last season's SF15-T (top) and the new SF16-H (bottom). The new machine also has a very slightly shorter wheelbase, reduced by less than an inch over its predecessor.