|Phantom diagram of the 911 GT3 R Hybrid. Click to enlarge.|
Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG will introduce the 911 GT3 R hybrid for production-based GT racing at the upcoming Geneva Motor Show in March. The hybrid is equipped with a flywheel energy recovery system (KERS) developed by Williams Hybrid Power initially for use in Formula One racing. (Earlier post.)
The 911 GT3 R Hybrid features an electrical front axle drive with two electric motors developing 60 kW each supplementing the 480-bhp (358 kW) four-liter flat-six at the rear of the 911 GT3 R Hybrid. Instead of the usual batteries of a hybrid road car, an electrical flywheel power generator fitted in the interior next to the driver stores recaptured energy and delivers it to the electric motors.
|CAD rendering of the Magnetically Loaded Composite (MLC) flywheel. Source: WHP. Click to enlarge.|
The flywheel generator itself is an electric motor with its rotor spinning at speeds of up to 40,000 rpm, storing energy mechanically as rotation energy. The flywheel generator is charged whenever the driver applies the brakes, with the two electric motors reversing their function on the front axle and acting themselves as generators. Then, whenever necessary—i.e., when accelerating out of a bend or when overtaking—the driver is able to call up extra energy from the charged flywheel generator, the flywheel being slowed down electromagnetically in the generator mode and thus supplying up to 120 kW to the two electric motors at the front from its kinetic energy. This additional power is available to the driver after each charge process for approximately 6 - 8 seconds.
|The GT3 R Hybrid. Click to enlarge.|
Depending on racing conditions, hybrid drive is used in this case not only for extra power, but also to save fuel. This again increases the efficiency and the performance of the 911 GT3 R Hybrid, for example by reducing the weight of the tank or making pitstops less frequent.
After its debut in Geneva the 911 GT3 R Hybrid will be tested in long-distance races on the Nürburgring. The highlight of this test program will be the 24 Hours on the Nordschleife of Nürburgring on 15-16 May. The focus is not on the 911 GT3 R Hybrid winning the race, but rather serving as a spearhead in technology and a “racing laboratory”, according to the company.
Although he energy storage system was originally developed for use in Formula One by the AT&T Williams team, Williams Hybrid Power is now focused on applications in road vehicles. In October 2009, Williams F1 and the Qatar Science & Technology Park (QSTP) formally signed an agreement to inaugurate the Williams Technology Center (WTC). The WTC is initially tasked with the progression of two Formula One inspired R&D projects with clear commercial goals.
The first is the development of an industrial-application large Magnetically Loaded Composite (MLC) flywheel—essentially a wholly composite flywheel which integrates the magnets of the electric motor into the composite. The second is the advancement of Williams F1’s simulator know-how for competition and road car application.