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Based on the McLaren 17D, this geometry was provided to Imperial College London for Jonathan Pegrum’s PhD thesis, “Experimental study of the vortex system generated by a Formula 1 front wing”. 

Front Wing

Figure 1: Streamlines from a spectral/hp element simulation of the unsteady LES flow past the Imperial Front Wing geometry

It is representative of one of the major points of interest in Formula 1, i.e. the interaction of vortical structures generated by the front wing endplate with the front wheel wake. As such, it exhibits complex flow dynamics with vortex interaction/merging, and said vortices are subjected to strong adverse and favourable pressure gradients when negotiating around the tyre, affecting their stability. Capturing the behaviour of the wheel wake is also a challenge on its own. Detailed experimental results (PIV and total pressure probe) are available in Pegrum’s thesis for validation, and we aim to provide a set of geometries for the different experimental conditions. 


 McLaren Car  Laser Smoke Visualisation

Figure 2: Experimental setup (left) and laser smoke visualisation behind the endplate (right), courtesy of Jonathan Pegrum


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