Formula 1, Carmakers Strike Deal, Agree on Committment to Energy-Efficient Technology
17 November 2006
Formula 1’s carmakers and the FIA (the organization that governs world Formula One racing) have come to an agreement on a new framework that will govern the sport until 2012. FIA president Max Mosley and Burkhard Göschel, chairman of the Grand Prix Manufacturers Association, also reaffirmed F1’s commitment to developing energy-efficient technology as part of an effort designed to make F1 more relevant to the road car industry and more environmentally responsible. (Earlier post.)
Mosley and Göschel pronounced the deal a major breakthrough, and a fundamental change in the way that the rules are managed.
Max Mosley has spoken before of his desire to see F1 at the cutting edge of green technology, suggesting that in future engine power should be limited by energy consumption rather than capacity. In June, Max Mosley described in a press conference the organization’s intention to head toward hybrid technology for future years. (Earlier post.)
Mosley and Goeschel emphasized that the commitment to energy efficiency will be a core part of the new agreement.
We want to make the research work done in F1 not just cost-effective but also road relevant. That is to say, new developments in F1 should be those that are directly helpful to the car industry and in particular things which are relevant to perhaps the biggest single issue which confronts the car industry worldwide, namely the reduction of the output of CO2. That’s why in the shorter term we are looking at energy-recovery and re-use from braking. That will come in 2009. We will come out with a regulation before the end of this year. And then recovery and re-use of the excess heat or waste heat from the engines. We intend to have a regulation for that before 2010. Both those things are currently fundamental to road car research.
In the longer term we are looking at the possibility of a completely new F1 engine reflecting the industry tendency which is to have a downsized, turbo-charged engine. At the moment that is still a discussion point between us and the manufacturers. That very briefly is where we stand at the moment.—Max Mosley
Our understanding as a manufacturer is that F1 is the pinnacle of technology. If F1 for us as manufacturers is to make sense we have to show into which area technology should go to solve the problems of the future but also to have the fun of Formula One racing. Without question we will have that.
Max also said we are starting with energy recovery in 2009. And as everyone already knows the engines are losing two-thirds of the energy by heat and one of the ideas is how do we bring that back. The first step is that bringing the energy back into the car is one of the most important recoveries, the second step is to do this without losing the energy of the first step. So not only the engine but also the drive train must be made very efficient. That is the outlook for the future.
What we are doing in the car industry, and you can see this at BMW, is that we are shifting over to turbo-charged engines with a high-point of efficiency. In the future we will have down-sized engines with turbo-chargers.
We have to look at all areas for reducing consumption but also keeping the dynamics of F1. It might sound like a contradiction but it is not. The targets of modern engineers is not just to say you can only recognize this area or that area but a modern engine has to cover both and if something seems to be not possible he has to find a solution to ensure that F1 is still dynamic, interesting, and emotional but it is following the modern ideas of technology.—Professor Burkhard Göschel
(A hat-tip to Chris Ellis!)
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