Category: F1 tech stuff.

Professor Sid Watkins OBE death; A Tribute to his work.

RIP Professor Sid Watkins. We will miss you. You deserved a knighthood for all the work you put into saving drivers lives before the accidents occurred, alas you ‘only’ got an OBE. Without your input, the sport will have had many more fatalities since Senna’s death in 1994. Many drivers owe their lives and more to you. Time for you to go fishing with Ayrton

Let us take a look at some of the work that he has done for motorsport safety since Ayrton Senna‘s death in 1994.

At the 1995 Australian GP he performed a trackside tracheotomy to save Mika Hakkinen‘s life, and also restarted his heart not once, but TWICE.

He ‘invented’ the HANS device that is compulsory in all forms of motorsport. I say ‘invented’ because you had a helping hand in developing it.

He had the sides of the cockpits raised to give the drivers better head protection

He had wheel tethers introduced to try and keep the wheels attached to the cars in a collision.

He introduced collapsible steering columns, which as well as being used in F1 and other forms of motorsport , are also used in road cars.

He introduced new, much more stringent crash tests for the front, rear and sides of the car, which meant the cars had to be made much stronger.

He also introduced the foam padding around the cockpit to further protect the drivers in a collision.

He called for downforce levels to be reduced to reduce cornering speeds, and therefore accident speeds. In fact in the races after Senna’s death, downforce was reduced overall by around 15%, which is a noticeable drop in grip for a car as sensitive as an F1 car.

He also did work on the tracks as well as the cars. He called for larger run-off areas to reduce the chance of a high-speed collision with a barrier. He also called for new barrier types to be used to reduce G-forces in collisions.

He will be missed so much that people have said said seeing him in the paddock automatically made the sport feel safer.

I will end this article with 2 Sid Watkins quotes from the Senna movie at Roland Ratzenberger and Ayrton Senna’s death. Rest in peace. We all love you. Your death has hit us hard. You are the TRUE legend of Formula 1.

‘Ayrton got very, very upset and cried a bit. And that’s when I said to him ”You know, Ayrton, you’ve been three times World Champion, you’re the fastest man in the world” and he liked fishing, so I said ”Why don’t you quit, and I’ll quit and we’ll just go fishing?” ‘

‘We got him out of the cockpit, got his helmet off and got an airway into him. And I saw from his neurological signs that it was going to be a fatal head injury. And he sighed, and his body relaxed and that was the moment… I’m not religious… that I thought his spirit had departed.”

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Spa Francorchamps Tech updates

The first race of the 2nd half of the season saw several cars with new upgrades.

Ferrari with Massa have had new barge boards for a few races now, with extra little fins on the leading edge of the floor, which Alonso has never raced. This changed at Spa, with Alonso running them for the first time this weekend. Also at the start of the weekend, Alonso was running a higher downforce package than Massa, but on Saturday switched to a lower downforce package.

Both Ferrari’s used lower downforce front wings to match the lower downforce rear wings, which involved all cascade elements from the front wing and a smaller upper flap. It looks more like a conventional front wing.

McLaren had a very visible update on the leading edge of the sidepod. The vortex generators that sit on the leading edge of the top of the sidepod were removed, and instead replaced with a large aerofoil element, similar to that of Sauber‘s. This adjusted the angle of the airflow to make the coanda effect stronger, making the exhaust flow more stable over a broader range of vehicle speeds, and also making the effect a little stronger. This gives a little more rear downforce with not much more drag. In addition to that, they also had new winglets on the side of the cockpit underneath the mirrors, like Ferrari do, which are vortex generators. These send 2, smaller vortices over the top of the sidepod and engine cover.

Also on Friday, the drivers were using a new, lower downforce front wing, the upper flap inner section was made smaller to reduce downforce in accordance with the lower downforce rear wing that only Button ran for qualifying and the race.

For Quali and the race, McLaren went two different ways with the car setup, which went wrong for Hamilton. The car was lacking in straight line speed, which is a crucial element to lap times at Spa.

Torro Rosso were trying out their 2013 suspension at Spa, which involved a new wheel upright, and brake setup. They decided not to race the setup as they couldn’t evaluate it properly on Friday. To me this means that next years car (along with Caterham) is likely to be a development of this years car, rather than a whole new car.

Sauber have started to run a new box shaped element behind the upper flap of the front wing, that also is used as a flow conditioning strake. The top joins to the curved section of the endplate which ajoins the main flap, and is angled to produce downforce. The inner side turns into the strake, which rather than being attached to the 2nd flap of the front wing, hangs loose.

Marussia were running with minor revisions to the new package they introduced at Silverstone. This includes new rear wing endplates, and a small revision to the exhast exits on the sidepods to make both areas of the car slightly more efficient.

HRT were once again running with their extreme low downforce wings that we saw in Canada, and once again the cars were excellent in a straight line, battling with the Caterhams during the race.

Analysis: F1 Fuel System

A nice in-depth look at the modern F1 fuel system, great work as usual from Scarbs.

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One of the great pieces of unseen technology in the F1 car is the fuel system. Comprised of complicated fuel tank and an array of pumps, the system is taken for granted. The super safe and highly efficient fuel system delivers the F1 cars 160kg of fuel during a race with barely any reliability issues.
Historically fuel tanks were simply metal tanks formed to fit in wherever they could be fitted. Often prone to puncturing during accidents and impacts, the fuel could easily spill and cause a huge fire. Major fires in F1 car are now thankfully rare. It’s fair to say the biggest leap in F1 safety has probably been the advent of the flexible fuel cell. Flexible bags to house the fuel have been part of the regulations for decades, There’s been no major fuel tank fire at an F1 race since Berger Imola crash in 1989 and…

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This is very clever stuff. It’s just a shame it proved to be so unreliable.

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McLaren went into 2011 with an aggressive design strategy, this was a response to the poor initial form in 2010 and resulted in the dramatic “U” sidepods and a mysterious exhaust system.


It was this exhaust system that stole most of the column inches in the F1 press and the fan forums during pre season testing. One particular column fed the interest around the exhaust and christened it the “Octopus”. The article suggested the exhaust was ducted to several exits and used high temperature Glass Ceramic Carbonfibre (GCC). It went on to explain the unreliability of the exhaust solution was due to the heat making it fail.
It was true McLaren’s first tests, even from the first private shakedown runs before the public testing had started, demonstrated a problem with the initial exhaust design. But this exhaust solution was not the “Octopus” as described; in fact McLaren Technical Director Paddy…

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Monaco tech – Car updates and technical problems.

I watched the whole weekend avidly to try and see who would be bringing massive rear wings. And I got a shock when I saw that actually, not as many teams as I was expecting did so. By massive rear wings I mean wings with a larger upper flap. Obviously, as we should know by now, a larger flap means a less-efficient DRS. At Monaco this isn’t important. A bigger upper flap produces more downforce. Downforce is key at Monaco. I was expecting Sauber, Lotus, Ferrari, Williams, the three youngest teams and McLaren to run the big rear wings. In fact only Sauber, Lotus, Caterham and Force India ran noticeably larger rear wings. Every team was running a slightly thicker main plane to boost downforce levels, with Sauber having the thickest.

It seems like there has also been more technical confusion over aspects of a certain car on the grid, the RB8 having a ‘hole’ in the floor, which shouldn’t have any kind of hole in it. It was found however to be within the regulations. The ‘hole’ looks like a hole from all the images taken of it, but apparently it isn’t, it’s a cut-out like Sauber and Ferrari are using. The outermost edges of the Sauber/Ferrari design makes a slot in the floor, not a hole. RedBulls seems to not have that gap, essentially making it a hole. The only way I can see such a design being legal is if the area where the slot should be (but looks solid) there is the tiniest of gaps, that cannot be seen in images. In this case, it does indeed make that area one whole part, with a gap to create a slot and not a hole.

Unusually, Mercedes were running yet more updates. New sidepods have been designed, and they actually did require new crash tests, such was the extent of the re-design. They now have a deeper undercut at the front, which gives a larger space between the sidepod and the turning vanes. This gives a more energised airflow to the rear of the car, boosting rear downforce. It certainly seemed to work for Schumacher, getting pole position. It’s very rare to see teams bringing brand new components to Monaco, due to the nature of the track.

Speaking of him, he retired from the race with what was reported on the official F1 website (www.formula1.com) as ‘tyre problems’ However I disagree. The car was tremendously slow on the straights, the engine didn’t seem to want to rev much higher than 14000-15000rpm, which is well below the power band of that Mercedes-Benz engine. He was still pretty fast in the corners however, which is what led me to suspect that it was a problem with the engine. I couldn’t get to hear it, but it didn’t sound as if it was misfiring, and without the data to look at, I’d hazard a guess at the car having a fuel pressure problem.

Caterham had a storming race with Heikki Kovalainen, having an almost race-long battle with Jenson Button. The Caterham was consistently on the pace of Button’s McLaren, and was in fact pulling away from him at one point of the race! It seems like Caterham have massive performance gains in low speed corners. In the race, Heikki was quite often less than a second per lap slower than the race leaders. It still looks to be a little unstable in the higher speed corners.

Speaking of higher speed corners, at Piscine (the swimming pool, for those who don’t speak French) Perez crashed in qualifying. I believe that he hit the barrier at the exit of one of the right hand corners previously in the lap, and this broke a track rod. At lower speeds such as the Nouvelle Chicane, it would’ve made very little difference to the steering of the car, however when the car was on two wheels through Piscine, that wheel couldn’t steer, so the car carried straight on into the barrier.

Also, Jean-Eric Vergne lost the back end at the exit of the tunnel in Q2, after this section had been re-surfaced to stop it happening! Button also had a moment when trying to overtake Heikki Kovalainen during the race, you could see it in the slow-motion replays! MY theory is that offline there is still a few large-enough bumps to unsettle the car in the braking phase. Vergne may have gone too wide, hit one of those bumps and lost the back end. Luckily it wasn’t as violent a collision as what happened to Sergio Perez last year in Q3 and he was unhurt. HRT were right with their predictions, Monaco did bring them much closer to the other teams, I was a little sceptical when they said that they would be challenging Marussia, so I have had to eat my words in that respect! It doesn’t take away what I said in part 5 of my technical series about what could be wrong with their car however.

F1 technical series. Part 5 of 5 – chassis

The chassis is one of, if not THE most important part of an F1 car. The design process generally starts in July of the previous season, and is crash tested at the beginning of the next year (generally mid-late January, early February). The chassis must conform to bodywork, strength, flexibility regulations. Everything bolts to the chassis. The front suspension is placed in a little compartment about 4 inches in front of the drivers’ feet, the brakes, the fuel tank and the engine are all attached to the chassis.

The chassis forms 2 functions. The first and arguably most important is the drivers’ survival cell. This is the ‘crash-proof’ structure that is safety critical. It must be impact resistant, in a frontal impact it must remain undamaged. The crash structures that are mounted onto the survival cell are the front and side crash structures, the front and rear roll over structures and the rear impact structure is mounted on the gearbox. It must also have FIA specified intrusion panels that stop debris and car parts from puncturing through the chassis and seriously injuring the driver. The material that the intrusion panels are made of is Zylon. These intrusion panels have to pass strength tests which the Haynes Owners Manual on the RedBullRacing RB6 was 1mm/s intrusion for 150seconds. The force that is required to meet this intrusion level is calculated and must meet a minimum requirement. In 2012 the Zylon has to be in multiple layers for extra strength.

The second function is to provide a mounting point for all the mechanical components, and provide good feedback through the suspension to let the driver know what is happening. A bad chassis will inherently flex a little too much and provide poor feedback from the suspension. It will also handle slightly worse, making it inherently slower. If your chassis is bad, then no matter how many mechanical or aerodynamic updates you bring, you will have a slow car. I think this is probably the problem with the HRT. The car seems to have a complete lack of balance, and the drivers seem to have no confidence in the car. It looks completely unpredictable. Narain Karthikeyan said that the car feels as though it has more downforce, and it probably does, but mechanically the car is terrible. It seems to be a very hard car to set up correctly, and they need to have a complete rethink in the way they design their cars.

The fuel tank is situated directly behind the driver, in the chassis tucked between the engine and the back of the cockpit.

The structure of the chassis is very complicated. It’s essentially solid carbon fibre, but rather than being a one piece moulding, it’s actually cast in two halves, which are then bonded together. Each half is made from several hundred plies of carbon fibre, each of which is cut to a different shape, layered in the female chassis mould, and checked against a construction manual before the next ply is positioned on top. The plies are layered in a way that gives the chassis overall strength, but more strength in critical places, such as the suspension mounts and the engine mounts.

Once all plies are positioned correctly the whole assembly is placed in a bag, which the air is then sucked out of to create a near vacuum and then placed in an autoclave where it undergoes a thermal curing, at a set pressure and temperature. The completed halves are bonded together after the curing process is complete. The two surfaces to be bonded together are meticulously cleaned as no fasteners like screws or dowels are used to supplement the bonding.

F1 Technical series. Part 4 of 5 – Powertrain

The powertrain of any vehicle with an internal combustion engine consists of the engine, gearbox and differential. An F1 car also has the KERS motor/generator.

Formula 1 engines are amongst the most efficient ‘petrol’ spark ignition engines in the world. They use exactly the same operating principles of your ordinary car engine, the 4 stroke ‘Otto’ cycle. As James May put it ‘suck, squeeze, bang and blow’. The 8 pistons travel up and down inside bores known as cylinders that are pressed into the engine block. Each cylinder has to be a set size of capacity. Total capacity of the bores and combustion chamber must be equal to or less than 2400cc. The pistons are then in turn connected to the crankshaft at the bottom of the engine via con-rods (connecting rods) which is also connected to the camshafts by a series of gears. This means that there is no belt, or chain to snap under high speed and load conditions, and therefore the engine can rev higher, and also there is less mechanical drag on the engine, giving more performance. There’s also less weight to contend with. Each car has an alternator, and a water pump. The lubrication system actually has more than one oil pump. A high pressure one for distribution inside the engine, and a scavenge pump to take any unwanted engine oil from the sump back into the holding tank. This type of lubrication system is known as a ‘dry sump’ system and is actually more reliable under high cornering forces as the oil pump isn’t starved of oil when going around a corner.

Another difference to your ordinary road car is the valvetrain. F1 engines are limited to 4 valves per cylinder. The valves inside your average 2 litre engine are closed by springs. At high engine speeds these springs can actually cause catastrophic valve backlash, where they LITERALLY bounce in their seats and then hit the top of the piston. This then destroys the internals of the engine. So, instead of ordinary valve springs, the valves are actually set into pressure chambers that are filled with high pressure Nitrogen gas from a gas bottle in the sidepod. The compressed Nitrogen acts as the valve spring, which means that metal springs aren’t needed to close the valves, the engines can rev higher and therefore produce more power. This type of valve spring mechanism was first pioneered by Renault back in the mid 1980’s, and the engines would freely be revving in excess of 23,000rpm if it wasn’t for the regulations restricting engine speed to ‘just’ 18,000rpm. Each piston is subjected to acceleration forces of around 9,000 times the force of gravity at full engine speed, and going from 0-60mph in just 5 ten-thousandths of a second! An F1 engine can actually go from idle at 4000rpm to its limiter in just 0.3 seconds! F1 engines also have no flywheel! This is to improve acceleration and to keep the centre of gravity of the car as low as possible.

Direct-Injection fuelling is not allowed within current regulations, so the fuel is injected directly into the intake trumpets housed in the engine air intake snorkel that sits above the drivers head.  Here’s a good video of fuel being injected. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dB0J94ayu5k

There is also one ignition coil and one spark plug per cylinder. Both fuelling and ignition are controlled electronically by the EMU

In 2014 the engine regulations will change, as will the aero regulations too. The engines will have 6 cylinders arranged in a ‘V’ shape, and a maximum total capacity of 1600cc’s. There will also be a single turbocharger mounted in a central position of the cars.

The gearboxes in F1 cars must have 7 forward gears and 1 reverse gear. Each set of gears must be made out of steel, and must be of a set dimension. Each team is allowed a maximum of 30 different gear ratios for use on every track. The gear ratios must also be set on Saturday morning, after which they are not allowed to be changed until the next race. Each gearbox also has to last 5 races, and any unscheduled changes incur a 5 place grid penalty added to the qualifying position at the first weekend the gearbox is used. The gears are not selected y your normal ‘H-Gate’ gearshift mechanism, instead they’re electro-hydraulically selected. The gears are actually selected by a hydraulic barrel mechanism that uses valves actuated by electronic signals from the gearshift paddles on the back of the steering wheel to control the flow of high pressure hydraulic fluid from the hydraulic pump mounted to the engine. When the pressure is sent to a specific gear selector fork, the fork moves to lock the gear it’s attached to, to the shaft it sits on. There is no synchromesh mechanism in an F1 gearbox, but your road car has one. All F1 gears are straight-cut gears as they are stronger.

The differential is an integral part of the gearbox, and is of the electro-hydraulic, limited slip type. It is full adjustable and the torque bias between each side can be changed in 3 ways to help steer the car through the corners, so setting up the differential to have the perfect torque distribution between each rear wheel is critical for mid-corner rear end grip and traction under acceleration. The three ways a differential is adjustable by are entry, exit and mid-corner. The flow of hydraulic fluid is controlled by ‘moog’ valves, which actually use a very tiny amount of electric current to control the flow of a LOT of hydraulic fluid.

The clutch is actuated electro-hydraulically, no mechanical linkage to the paddles on the back of the steering wheel. The whole clutch weighs just 1.5kg for absolute minimal inertia, and is made up of several solid carbon plates, metal pressure plates and the outer casing that holds the plates together. There is a hydraulically actuated clutch fork that opens the clutch up to disengage the clutch for gear changes and for race starts.

The final part of the powertrain system is the KERS unit. This consists of a motor-generator built onto the back of the engine underneath the oil tank and attached directly to the crankshaft. When the brakes are applied this unit generates electricity that is stored in super-capacitors or batteries. When the car is travelling above 100km/h the generator can be used as an electric motor, using up the energy stored in the batteries or super-capacitors to give an extra 80hp boost for up to 6.6 seconds per lap. The time that the KERS is used for is controlled by the FIA standard ECU from McLaren Electronics. KERS was first introduced in 2009, but only McLaren and Ferrari were using it by the end of the season. Originally Renault and BMW-Sauber started the season with the system. There is another type of KERS system that Williams Hybrid Technologies started to develop, but because of the weight and packaging of it they decided to go for an electrical system. The system they started to develop was the flywheel type, where the flywheel stored rotational energy and was then engaged by a clutch that used the momentum of the flywheel to give the required power boost.

Very interesting….Thanks Scarbs.

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Having been slightly off the pace in the opening three races, Red Bull clearly do not have the RB8 working as they had expected. Pole position in Bahrain doesn’t prove their issues are over, but the car sports a revised sidepod set up this weekend and this has perhaps has unlocked the potential in the car. The new sidepods are a revision of the Version2 spec sidepod/exhaust set up. The Bahrain spec simplifies the sidepod, removing the complex crossover tunnel under the exhaust ramp.

Exhaust Versions

Sidepod Version1

At the cars launch the RB8 features a simple Version1 exhaust set up, aimed at being a benign solution to get the bulk of testing out of the way, without interference from complex exhaust issues. Then later in testing the focus could switch to the greater potential performance offered by the V2 set up. The V1 set up placed the exhaust in…

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F1 Technical series. Part 3 of 5 – Suspension

                                                            The suspension on a Formula 1 car is very important. It has an effect on the aerodynamics of the car. It is also the only way for the weight and...

The suspension on a Formula 1 car is very important. It has an effect on the aerodynamics of the car. It is also the only way for the weight and loading on the car to be transferred through the wheels/tyres to the road, so its geometry (toe, castor and camber) is crucial to the handling of the car. Formula 1 suspension has to meet 3 requirements. These are to reduce the amount of unsprung mass (any part of the car in which its weight is not supported by the torsion bar), disrupt the airflow as little as possible and be strong enough to withstand the high loadings that they are placed under. There are a couple of examples where loading can be too much, especially if there is a small flaw in the elements. The most recent of which was Sebastien Buemi in Shanghai 2010, where the pushrods had a small fracture in them, and the high loading placed on them under braking for turn 14 after the long straight caused them to fail. Another case is Kimi Raïkkonen’s accident in 2005 at the Nurburgring. There a flat-spotted tyre caused huge vibrations in the suspension, eventually causing it fatigue stress at which point it failed and he crashed in turn 1.

The suspension also plays a crucial role in controlling the tyre temperatures. The camber of the tyre affects how evenly distributed the loading on the tyre is, and therefore how hot each part of the tyre gets. Every F1 car will run with a slight degree of negative camber where the outside top of the tyre is further in than the bottom. Too much can cause blistering of the tyre on the inner shoulder, which leads to shorter tyre life and even less grip. There is a good effect of running negative camber however, and that is that as the car goes through the corner, the roll of the tyre forces the outer tyre to be moved slightly further inwards, which stretches the outer sidewall and gives a larger contact patch. If the car ran with positive or no camber at all this would impair the grip from the tyre. The geometry of the suspension, particularly that at which the wishbones are angled and controls tyre motion over bumps, kerbs and changes of direction is particularly important as having a car that can ride the kerbs better than others can seriously improve lap times, especially in lower speed corners.

The front suspension wishbones are attached directly to the chassis which fives them optimum stiffness. However the rear suspension is attached to the gearbox, which is only attached to the car through the engine. Which is only attached to the car through the backplate of the chassis. It is for this reason why some cars may sport a strengthening arm or 2 linking the gearbox to the chassis. Ferrari have been using it so far this year, but was originally brought into the sport by Renault.

The uprights which house the wheel hubs&bearings, brakes, brake cooling and wheel attachment must be made out of Aluminium. In previous years Metal Matrix Compound or MMC was used as it is stronger than aluminium and lighter too. However it was very costly to manufacture, so was dropped in favour of the cheaper alternative

With the exception of the Ferrari, the setup of the front and rear suspension is different. Every other car uses a pushrod-actuated front suspensions system and a pullrod-actuated system at the rear. Ferrari however use pullrod on the front too. There is a small aerodynamic advantage to this. There is also a mechanical advantage as the front torsion bar (spring), ARB (Anti-Roll Bar) and multimatic dampers could be mounted lower in the chassis, which gives a lower CoG (Centre of Gravity) and improves the handling of the car at lower speeds.

Formula 1 car utilize a very simple double wishbone and inboard suspension setup on both the front and rear. By contrast most modern cars (with the exception of some Honda models) use a typical MacPherson strut type suspension where there is just one lower control arm attached to the lower half of the wheel hub and the strut (which houses the springs and the dampers) attached to the top of the wheel hub.

The components of an F1 car suspension are as follows

Top/bottom wishbones – Control wheel angle (camber and castor) and wheel movement. Also houses the mandatory wheel tethers which are required by the regulations to hold the wheel close to the car as long as possible in the event of an accident.

Pushrod/Pullrod –  Transmits the suspension and car loading through from the upright to the rockers (bell cranks) or to the tyres.

Rockers (Bell cranks) – Transfers the vertical reciprocating movement of the push/pullrod into rotational movement at the torsion bar.

Torsion bar (springs) – The torsion bar acts as the spring that absorbs shock loads from the suspension movement. Its strength is controlled by the alloy mixture, its thickness and the length. Most F1 torsion bars are of equal length and its diameter only changes in the middle as the outer ends need to be the same size to fit in the splined holes in the chassis and on the rockers. Stiffer torsion springs increase the handling responsiveness at that end of the car, but reduces overall mechanical grip in the middle of the corner. Cars are also less pitch-sensitive as the car changes its pitch a lot less under braking/acceleration loadings

Heave spring – The heave spring controls how stiff the car is when both sides of the cars suspension are compressed together for example under braking, or acceleration, or over a hefty bump. Cars are less pitch-sensitive as the car changes its pitch a lot less under braking/acceleration loadings when the heave springs and dampers are stiffer. This means the car may have more grip going into a corner, and may have better traction on the exit of the corner.

4-way Adjustable damper – These are fully adjustable dampers. They are adjustable in 4 ways. High and low speed bump, and high and low speed rebound. Bump settings are the compressing of the damper, rebound is the extending. So when a wheel moves upwards it compresses the damper, when it moves downwards it extends the damper. The dampers are critical for fine-tuning the handling of the car. The softer the damper the easier it is to compress and the more oscillation from the torsion bars you get and vice versa. When talking about the speed of the damper we don’t talk about the speed of the car, we talk about how quickly the damper is moved. Low speed is a slow extension/retraction and high speed is a fast extension/retraction. There are 3 dampers at the front and 3 at the rear of most F1 cars. 2 directly attached to the rockers and one that connects both front rockers together. The 3rd damper is often called the ‘heave’ damper and controls how the car reacts when both front wheels move together.

Track rods – The track rods controls the steering of the wheel hubs. They are normally attached to the front of the wheel hub, and quite often run in front or in the wake of the lower wishbone, which slightly reduces drag and

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/formula1/17742439

ARB – The anti-roll bar links both sides of the car together through the suspension elements. This means that the car is less sensitive to roll. The balance of the car can be fine-tuned by altering the stiffness of the ARBs. Softer front/stiffer rear  ARBs give less understeer and stiffer front/softer rear give more understeer.

Raïkkonen’s suspension failure 2005 – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lFG4mdEVmKQ

Buemi Suspension failure 2010 – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ek3ybBIq

Ferrari gearbox-chassis linking arm – http://www.formula1.com/news/technical/2012/865/948.html