V3.co.uk visited Silverstone on Friday to catch practice ahead of qualifying for the British Grand Prix. We were given a sneak peek into the Mercedes GP Petronas team pit garage where we had a look at some of the tech on Nico Rosberg's car.
The cars are stripped down and subjected to very precise checks before being sent out onto the track.
Brake fluids are located at the front end, and the brakes are housed inside cake tin-like structures. The brakes on a Formula 1 car are extremely efficient and can bring the car from 62mph to 0mph in about 15 metres. A high performance roadcar needs around 30 metres.
A Kinetic Energy Recovery System is built into the Mercedes GP car, taking energy generated by the braking process and reusing it to provide a short-term boost which can be activated by the driver.
The brakes are connected to the suspension. Below we can see the front suspension, which weighs a couple of kilograms and comes with different layers of carbon fibre. The suspension is designed to handle large amounts of force in multiple directions, and can take the stress of a seven tonne weight, for example.
Aerodynamics are key in Formula 1, and the front and rear wings are designed to create downforce to push the tyres onto the track, improve cornering and reduce drag. Drivers can make limited adjustments to the front and rear wings from the cockpit during a race.
Mercedes was testing a redesigned exhaust on Friday, but at the time of writing there was confusion surrounding the off-throttle diffuser technology relating to this part.
Some teams, including Mercedes GP, have been able to blow exhaust gases over the rear floor of the car even when the driver is not pushing down on the accelerator. This has the effect of increasing downforce and grip, but there are claims that this is giving some teams an unfair advantage.
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