Some features of the aerodynamics of the Haas VF-19February 8, 2019
Changes in the technical regulations that came into force in 2019 seem insignificant only at first glance. In fact, aerodynamics specialists had to solve very complex tasks: in fact, the parameters of the air flow became quite different, which flows around the car with its wider, constructively simple front wing and higher rear wings, which have lost a number of elements that in one way or another influenced aerodynamics.
Michael Schmidt, an expert in the German edition of Auto Motor und Sport, attempted to analyze some of the features of the new Haas machine, although so far the team has published only its computer images that do not provide a complete picture of the VF-19.
The new coloring of the car, which is dominated by black color, hides many nuances, but one feels that Haas F1 specialists, led by experienced Ben Agatangel, who is responsible for aerodynamics in the team, tried to compensate for the loss of downforce, which inevitably entails amendments to the technical regulations in 2019
The front fender really looks quite simple. Five elements, no cascade designs, only two stabilizers on the edges, end plates, as if from a Lego, turned 15 degrees to the sides – the maximum angle allowed by the regulations. Front air ducts have become significantly smaller, as required by the new rules.
The height of the deflectors located in front of the side pontoons is only 35 centimeters, the rear wing has become 10 cm wider and 7 cm higher, due to which a certain visual balance is also achieved against the background of a powerful front wing.
If you analyze the presented images of the VF-19 more closely and know what to look for, you can still reveal a lot of different nuances.
The tip of the nose fairing has become somewhat more miniature, and from the bottom it has become less angular. Everything is adapted to use the solution, which is called S-duct, already successfully tested by Ferrari. However, where his inlet is located is unclear – everything hides the black color. Since all the vortex generators disappeared from the front wing, stabilizers, which are under the longer nose cone, must now perform this function, and their profile has become more pointed.
To compensate for the partial loss of downforce, small wings are located in various places of the car – these are new mounts for rear-view mirrors, and a wing on the upper air intake, and a T-shaped element that is in front of the rear wing, suspiciously reminding us that last year seen on a Ferrari car.
The top wishbones of the rear suspension are similar to the solution implemented in 2018 on a McLaren car, but in Haas everything looks more elegant: the lever is attached to the highest point of the hub and is very high.
The end plates of the rear wing are divided into two elements connected in front of each other, but there is a hole in the back of the plate, and a kind of “comb” hangs from the bottom of the plate – these elements can be called small fins. They should create additional vortices, which allows to increase the efficiency of the end plate.
The VF-19 images also make it possible to discern that the wheels have a rather complicated “double” surface, which contributes not only to cooling, but also performs a certain aerodynamic function, directing the disturbed air flow to the side of the car.
Triangular levers of the front suspension are located above and less impede the flow of air to the rear of the machine, including the diffuser. The side pontoons became narrower than the last year’s car.
In accordance with the requirements of the adjusted technical regulations, on the machines of 2019 there are no number of elements that generated vortices, which allowed to some extent to imitate the “ground effect”. Therefore, now the cars will be less confident in cornering.
The team Red Bull Racing, on the machines which such aerodynamic solutions were brought to perfection, not by chance voted against the changes in the rules, but remained in the minority. But their rivals from Mercedes and Ferrari were behind – there was talk that they did this to harm Red Bull.
Judging by the appearance of the new Haas machine, the angle of the longitudinal inclination of the body, the so-called. “Rake”, it became less. But the wheelbase has become longer, about 6-7 cm. Also, the fuel tank volume is slightly increased, according to the new regulations it does not hold 105, but 110 kg of fuel.
Will all changes allow to achieve the goal for which they were conceived, namely, to simplify overtaking, to make the struggle on the track more interesting? Experts doubt this: most likely, it will still be difficult to overtake. Yes, and the speed will drop slightly: if the machines are relatively slow on the first tests in Barcelona, then the team in Melbourne will probably figure out how to compensate for the loss of downforce.
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