Technical Analysis of the Mercedes W10: novelties in sight and hidden
The next to present his car for F1 2019 It has been Mercedes, with the Mercedes W10 . A car that has called me something more the attention of those presented so far, who honestly have disappointed me a lot. No changes have been seen as important as in previous years, just a continuation of what was seen last year or simply copies or adaptations of solutions from other teams that have introduced this year. But innovative things ... Where?
By the way, the W10 has already been shooting today at a filming day in Silverstone to ensure that everything works properly and make some shots for publicity. The first Mercedes engine tested this year, since Williams had planned to do another filming day but was suspended because the material suppliers had not supplied the parts on time, so Grove's problems start and I would not be surprised if those Delays were partly also due to the team's economy. I honestly do not like to see a story like this ...
Well, let's go to the topic of the engine, which as I say it has been very important to try it today and see what goes well before the preseason. The reason is that Mercedes has worked hard to raise the bar of F1 once again and has completely redesigned the previous engine to extract more performance from it. Awesome! Plus! This may be good for them, but not so much for the championship, since Renault and Honda may still be able to have lap times similar to the ones above, even though they have improved. I would have liked that Mercedes and Ferrari had problems to look for more performance and this season the engines would have been more equal as in the last years of the V8. Do you remember? People complained about the aerodynamics because it made a difference, now they complain about the engines ... It never rains to everyone's taste.
Andy Cowell, the head of engines of the firm German in F1 has said " We have made changes to the cooling architecture of the power unit, which hopefully provide an aerodynamic benefit in the car and also increase the efficiency of the propeller; so we hope it's an improvement in the chassis and the power unit. [...] Right at the heart of the engine is the conversion of fuel into heat release in the combustion chamber and useful work outside the crankshaft. [...] We have taken steps in combustion efficiency and in the ERS system. The union between the turbocharger assembly with the MGU-H, the inverter, the cells and the MGU-K means that the entire system is now able to operate more efficiently and help with the deployment of energy throughout a race . ".
Recall that this year the weight of the fuel tank rises from 100Kg to 110Kg to help teams not have to save so much in the race and can go more thoroughly. But that supposes a battle of the greater car and a considerable weight that affects the vehicular dynamics of a negative and evident form. That is why they have put so much effort into Mercedes to improve efficiency and lower engine consumption, despite the fact that they stop consuming more. This allows you to take less fuel and go lighter, with the advantages of speed that gives. " If you have an efficient engine with efficient aerodynamics and you are prepared to do a little lift and coast (fuel saving technique), then you have the opportunity to start the race with less than 110Kg.Honestly, it's a very smart move by Mercedes. Others might think about relaxing efficiency since they will have more kilos of fuel this year ...
We see the front wing that has not opted for the camouflage colors that the Mercedes guys had insinuated into their social networks before the presentation. Finally they continue with their silver. The spoiler, regardless of the color, adapts to the new technical code, they are that maximum simplicity in terms of aerodynamic appendages on the wing and on the endplates. But in this case, we do see interesting curves in the main plane, with two channels near the center and with a curvature as we approach the extremes in the style of Toro Rosso. In fact, mercedes has also included those profiles under the wing that we talked about with the STR14, and they are identical.
As for the nose , it follows the same philosophy as the passer year. A nose very rounded and narrow to let more air pass to the sides, and not so much exploit those channels on the sides of the nose as in other equipment. We also appreciate in this image the peculiar geometry to which Mercedes has accustomed us in terms of the front suspension, but a very important detail is that we saw in the previous designs that the arms of the lower part were joined in a large fairing arm with aerodynamic Y-shaped ends (you can see the suspension of the W09 here), but in the W10 it looks more like a V, that is, there is more opening between the two arms. Likewise, the front brake lines can be seen, very small compared to those seen in other equipment presented so far, in addition to being in a fairly high position and being divided inside.
In addition, in the nose they have accentuated even more those lateral profiles strong> like skirts to create a channel under the nose and redicirgir the flow of air. McLaren has already copied it in its new nose last year and we have seen that some of this year's teams have also implemented it soon. An area under the nose quite complex in the Mercedes, compared to the simplicity of the Renault, to give an example of the current year. We also appreciate the famous slot of the S-Duct on the nose, which I think this year is especially interesting to have cleaned the aerodynamic appendices and lose a lot of downforce. With that conduit, air is extracted under the front wing and accelerates to improve aerodynamic efficiency ...
Again we have the very simple halo, without aerodynamic appendages Red Bull style last year. In this sense, we have seen that not all the cars presented have opted for the same, and we will have to wait if mercedes continues it this way or adds complexity as the season progresses. The airbox is oval and large, with three quite different channels in the air intake, which as you know, are used for the intake of the turbo for the engine (central) and the sides to refigerate other systems such as oil from the gearbox, intercooler, ERS, etc. By requiring less intake surface with respect to the atmospheric engines, many cars have opted to reduce the openings of the pontoons and reduce the drag in that area and place them here in this higher area.
The middle zone , sorry, but I do not dare to comment it It is extremely complex, and it would take a deep study to understand what each of the cuts, profiles and elements that exist right in that area, which as we see is becoming more complex two years ago, are useful.All this to redirect flows that profile and caress the pontoon and engine cover to the rear area.
Last year, with the W09 we had very small pontoons or sidepods , leaving little opening for engine oil and water radiators. But they were in a very high position and their shape was elongated and flat to make the upper area of the car wider. On the other hand, for the new philosophy of the W10 this has been changed to a more Red Bull style, giving us a key on that aerodynamic efficiency to reduce the drag that has been cited by Conwell. Now, in the W10 the openings have grown a bit in terms of height, but it has been reduced considerably in terms of the width of the same. As a result, we have a very narrow and stylized central area "has thinned" to generate less drag and the lower area has been tight to the body to let more air pass to the rear area.
The redesign of the engine has made that rear area very compact, as always sought. Taking a look at the previous photos that show the rear area from a better point of view it is appreciated that we can see much of the flat bottom. And if the floor remains in sight, I would say that the engine cover is very tight. As for the floor we are talking about, we see that it is quite worked as we saw at the end of last season in many cars, with the molded edges and the area just in front of the rear tire with those ribs or grooves to try to prevent the air dirty that generates the rear tire affects the clean and laminar air that travels under the floor, or otherwise the efficiency of the diffuser would be affected. We also see some small profiles on the ground, just in the area that covers the rear tire and is closer to the upper area of the diffuser, to redirect the air, something that many teams use ...
If we analyze the rear wing, we see under it two T-shaped wings that we saw last year, with two central supports on the wing instead of one. And it is appreciated that the exhaust blows quite low, they have not done something similar to what they tried in Renault last year to blow with a greater inclination and that the high-energy air that comes out of the exhaust can help to accelerate the air that travels under the rear wing (you know the law: more speed - less pressure, so it encourages positive or downward lift). Likewise, the rear wing follows a similar form to last year, but adapting to the dimensions and new regulations.
In principle, it seems a pretty small wing, but we do not know if they have mounted a low load or high for the presentation, besides that the perspectives from which the images are taken, sometimes cheat. But that is the feeling it gives. However, in the image that is rolling in Silverstone, it does not seem to be big for that circuit, which is precisely not one of low load. If we see a small wing, it can indicate that they have an efficient diffuser and a good traction by the geometry of the rear suspensions, which does not force them to mount much bigger wings like what happened to the McLaren MCL33 . So it's good news for them ...
It is interesting to analyze the rear wing, very straight and with a V-shaped groove in the flap of the DRS , as they are presenting many cars in the last 5 or 6 years. As estimated by the new regulation, there are no gills in the endplates, so it seemed especially rare to see them in the Williams, which in principle, that spoiler would not be legal, unless they have cut all the way to the end of the endplate, the The regulation is valid because they have taken advantage of a vulnerability or lack thereof.I mean, it's not something innovative, but there it is ... Remember that it serves for when you have very large angles of attack, that the flow traveling under the wing does not separate and cause it to stall before or lose efficiency, with the Gurney manages to use a greater angle of attack without this risk.
As for the rear endplates , they follow the philosophy that McLaren introduced, of those curves, cuts and profiles to redirect the air, but as the regulations estimate, without profiles in the area external thereof. The new rear wing and endplates is one of the most complex seen in what we have of presentations. And porcierto, I finish with this last image that I have drawn, and apologizing if I have hurt the sensibility of some reader because of how badly they are drawn, but I just wanted you to see it in a more graphic way what I was saying about the prohibition of and what Williams has done that could be declared illegal or not and other teams choose to copy this interesting solution.
Look, the first drawing would be the endplate as says the new technical regulations that should be, without those gills on the rear wing that make part of the air escape and escape through them to improve wing efficiency. In the center we have what we have had in past years and that is not already allowed, with those bruns that you can observe. On the other hand, what Williams has done is to keep those brochures but without an edge, that is, it is the same edge of the bruns that delimits the shape of the endplate (I do not know if I explain myself). They fulfill the same function, but perhaps the FIA can not say that it is illegal because it could be considered that they are not grooves carved in the endplate, but that is the form of it ... This kind of things are what you like when you do analysis, the mischief of engineers and innovative solutions that can make a difference.
Conclusion of everything seen and heard in the presentation of the Mercedes W10, because it looks like a winning car and that only Ferrari and Red Bull (if Honda complies), could give it battle or it will be another boring world where it would be a walk of Hamilton. So let's hope that Ferrari is also there and that Red Bull joins the battle and we have a hard-fought world championship like last year. And be careful with the said engine and efficiency, because if others have been entrusted by this greater deposit this year, they could have screwed up to the bottom, and during the season (without tokens but with the penalties for change of engine) It would be difficult to repair the error, apart from the time needed to redesign and make the new engine architecture reliable ... In the end!You may be interested