- ERS Explainer
- Ferrari’s twin battery
- Free energy tricks & Extra Harvest mode
- Free load mode / Supercharger mode
- Potential rear wing ‘stall’
- As the car slows into the corner the MGUK will recover energy, sending some of it to the ES for use later in the lap and the rest directly to the MGUH to keep the turbocharger spooled and in the optimum window for the acceleration phase.
- Accelerating out of the corner (once no longer traction limited) the MGUK will request the full 120kw to help propel the car forward. The MGU-H, having already kept the turbocharger ‘alive’, will start to recover some energy and send it directly to the MGUK, whilst energy is deployed from the ES to supplement it.
- As the car accelerates out onto the straight the MGUH will continue to recover energy and feed it to both the MGUK and ES, topping up the latter for use elsewhere around the lap.
Each circuit will provide an entirely different challenge for the drivers and engineers as they strive to find the perfect way around a lap. Oftentimes it will require sacrifice in one corner or straight in order that the laps overall energy strategy is not compromised, which brings me to another misunderstood concept - SoC.
|Ferrari's energy store, which ordinarily resides under the driver, was captured here by Craig Scarborough in Abu Dhabi last season, Craig kindly allowed me to use the image
It got me to thinking about a less than obvious energy trick that Honda dragged out into the light in 2016 - Extra Harvest Mode. This little nugget of information came via Motor Fan illustrated (a Japanese publication) and showed that if you don’t explicitly write something down in the regulations the teams and manufacturers will exploit it.
In short the exhaust, due to its placement, currently has an influence on the aerodynamic airflow structures it touches (rear wing and diffuser airflow structures ‘talk to one another’, creating an upwash behind the car). Renault use the exhaust to blow the underside of their rear wing, improving downforce at lower speeds, something they’ve tried to enhance by reducing its proximity to the mainplane (which also features heat protection to guard against the increased temperatures it might encounter).
|Giorgio Piola captured the wastegate arrangement as the car was torn down after the test in FP1, note the lower wastegate pipe is merely there to comply with the regulations and isn't directly connected, rather merged with the upper pipe
|A rear view of the wastegate setup (red arrow) and the oddly cambered mainplane (line added in yellow to define the surface change) was captured by Giorgio Piola
The gains made by Ferrari over the last few seasons have been astounding but rather than being considered 'cheats' they should be lauded for their brilliance and ingenuity. Afterall, we've all marvelled over Mercedes dominance between 2014-2016, so the Scuderia's resurgence should be admired too.