Some applications of racing technology in the field of civil vehicles

This article is a project I carried out in school, and contains some examples of racing technology in the field of civilian cars that I know

4w ago


Motorsports has always been a testing ground to test the true strength of car companies' products, and it is also an exciting point for the majority of car enthusiasts. Racing brings us passion. In fact, the more important meaning is that the racing has promoted the continuous competition among many car companies in technology and accelerated the development of automobile technology. One of the most important results is that many technologies in motorsport have given birth to many civilian car technologies. From the earliest motorsports to the present, a large number of well-known or unfamiliar racing technologies have been applied to the civilian field, and some of them have even become common configurations in today's vehicles.

1. Four-wheel drive (4WD)

In the 1950s, due to the limitations of the chassis design of F1 cars at that time, it was difficult for high-horsepower engines to give full play to their advantages in racing cars, and the oversteer caused by rear-wheel drive was very serious. So someone started preparing to port the four-wheel drive concept to F1 cars. In 1961, the Ferguson team launched the first Ferguson P99 car with a front four-wheel drive in F1. However, it is a pity that F1 was still in the 1.5L era at the time, and the power had not yet reached the point where it required four wheels to rotate together, so this Ferguson P99, the first four-wheel drive in history, left almost nothing in the race. Achievement. It was the later Audi that really carried forward the four-wheel drive system. It was only 20 years later that Audi's Quattro car had a brilliant record on the rally field that made people realize the importance of the four-wheel drive system. In the 1980s, Audi was almost the king of the WRC. In 1983, it was taken away by Lancia’s rear-drive rally car 037. However, the continuous maturity of the four-wheel drive technology also made Lancia launch their four-wheel drive in 1986. Drive rally car Delta S4, the success of four-wheel drive technology in the rally field also makes this technology really begin to gradually spread to civilian cars.

2. Turbo boost

In fact, the first to install turbines on cars was actually civilian cars. After the end of World War II, both GM and BMW briefly used turbines on Oldsmobile Jetfire and BMW 2002 Turbo models, but they were all limited by their immature technology. , And has given up the option of using turbines for civilian vehicles. Until July 1977, Renault released the new racing car RS01 at the British Silverstone circuit. It was the first turbocharged F1 model with a horsepower between 700 and 1000 horsepower. For others that were generally less than 600 horsepower at the time In terms of racing cars, the power of RS01 is similar to that of rolling, and the sound of the turbo relief valve became a symbol of high technology at that time. And in December of the same year, Saab, which started by building airplanes, launched a turbocharged civilian production car-Saab 99, which not only solved the problem of unstable operation of civilian cars equipped with turbochargers, but also solved the problem that has always been The knocking problem. Nowadays, turbocharging system is a very common and practical system. It can not only bring better performance, but also environmental protection and lower emission standards are also a very important advantage of turbochargers. Nowadays, automakers must not only satisfy customers' desires for driving and riding in automobiles, and ensure that the products have sufficient driving pleasure, but also take the responsibility of protecting the environment and creating a good living space. The turbocharger can just meet the comprehensive requirements of improving fuel economy and reducing emissions without losing driving pleasure.

3. ERS system (energy recovery system)

Environmental protection is a big background of the current era, and ERS (Energy Recovery System) is one of the emerging technologies in recent years. The working principle is simply to use the large amount of energy generated by the car during braking and other tasks to be recovered and then reused. Its specific breakdown is divided into KERS (kinetic energy recovery) and TERS (heat energy recovery).

The KERS system was first introduced into F1 events by the FIA ​​(International Automobile Federation) in 2009. The general structure of KERS is an electric/generator, a high-energy battery pack and a control module. The braking energy of the car body is stored through technical means and used as auxiliary power during the acceleration of the car.

The TERS system was introduced into F1 in 2014 and has been used as an important part of the V6 hybrid engine. TERS is an energy-saving equipment that utilizes the high-temperature oil and gas heat energy of the compressor and makes full use of the heat energy through heat exchange. Through energy exchange and power saving control, it collects the heat energy generated during the operation of the air compressor, and at the same time improves the operating conditions of the air compressor. It is an energy-saving equipment with efficient waste heat utilization and zero-cost operation.

Both KERS and TRES systems are emerging systems introduced into F1 in order to deal with today’s environmental issues. These two systems are gradually being applied to some high-end civilian vehicles, such as McLaren P1, Porsche 918, and the new generation of Similar technology of ERS is used on Honda NSX. In the development process of today's very popular electric and hybrid vehicles, these energy-recovering systems will also be the main force to improve vehicle endurance.

4. Multifunctional steering wheel & paddle shifter

The multi-function steering wheel is almost the configuration of some mainstream models in the market. Today, but the first integrated function keys on the steering wheel are also popularized from the racing track. Still taking F1 as an example, the steering wheel is its entire core. In the race, the racer needs to adjust various data of the vehicle through various knobs on the steering wheel, such as throttle range setting, fuel consumption rate and so on. Later, this technology was introduced to family cars, mainly to facilitate the operation of the driver, reduce the distraction caused by operating other functions while driving, thereby improving safety.

Paddle shifting was first used in F1 racing cars at first. The reason is that the space inside the car is small, and the gear shift lever cannot be installed. You can only use paddles to shift gears, and because the shift paddles are near the steering wheel, you can shift gears. More convenient and faster. And such easy-to-use functions will naturally spread to civilian cars.

5. Active suspension system

The first active suspension system was the Lotus 97T F1 car in 1985. The biggest difference between active suspension technology and passive suspension system is that when the passive suspension is working, the body will tilt to one side under the action of gravity when encountering a curve. The active suspension uses a complex system to actively control the body to lean toward the corner when turning, so as to achieve a higher cornering speed. However, in F1, due to the great advantage of cars using active suspension technology, this technology was banned by F1 in 1993, 8 years after its birth. In the field of civil vehicles, active suspension systems have many advantages compared with traditional steel car suspension systems. The most important point is that the elasticity of the spring, that is, the softness and hardness of the spring can be automatically adjusted as needed. For example, the suspension can be hardened when driving at high speed to improve the stability of the vehicle body. When driving at low speed for a long time, the control unit will think that it is passing a bumpy road and use the suspension to soften to improve shock absorption comfort. In addition, the acceleration generated by the impact of the wheel on the ground is also one of the parameters considered when the air spring is automatically adjusted. For example, when cornering at high speed, the air springs and shock absorbers of the outer wheels will automatically harden to reduce the body's roll. The electronic module will also strengthen the springs and shock absorbers of the front wheels during emergency braking. To reduce the inertia of the body forward. Therefore, models equipped with air springs have higher control limits and comfort than other cars.

6. Aerodynamics

Compared with civilian cars, racing cars that pursue extreme speed and maneuverability take into account the use of aerodynamics earlier. For example, the rear wing commonly found on various sports cars today. The earliest appearance of the rear wing was in the F1 event. I have to admit that as the top event of the automobile event, many technologies in F1 have been feeding back the field of civilian cars. The first model to use the rear wing component was the Lotus 49 race car in 1968. Since then, F1 race cars have gradually begun to focus on downforce instead of blindly reducing wind resistance. Until now, the various extreme or practical Pneumatic shape. For civilian vehicles, the excellent aerodynamic shape brings faster speed, more stable driving and more eye-catching styling. Even if the aerodynamic research and development of civilian vehicles does not require a large investment, it still It is an important development direction in the future.

High-intensity and high-pressure racing competitions force engineers to rack their brains and try their best to make the already excellent vehicles more perfect. As a manufacturer, the racing track is a testing ground for various new technologies. Through intense long-term operation to test the reliability of new technologies, these technologies have become more mature and advanced after being tempered by the racing track. It is natural to transplant these technologies for civilian use. Therefore, even though motorsports require unimaginable human, material and financial resources, major auto manufacturers will still participate in the race. We can expect that more practical technologies will be put into the civilian field in the future.

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