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Advanced aluminium alloys

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The previous article (Pin Critical) on Advanced Metals last month continued on the subject of titanium alloys. This month, we shall look in more detail at some of the more exotic aluminium alloys which are available, following on from a previous article in this vein. Whilst in some applications, a low modulus material is very useful (fasteners for example can benefit from having a low elastic modulus), in many of the applications where aluminium is used, high stiffness would be a useful...

KERS at Le Mans

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Having looked last month at the McLaren Mercedes KERS system, this month we will investigate the use of energy recovery systems in La Sarthe, the home of the Le Mans 24 Hours. The ACO (Automobile Club d’Ouest, organisers of the Le Mans 24 Hours) currently incorporate the following section into the technical regulations for LMP1 cars in the ALMS and at Le Mans itself (see end of feature). KERS is currently only utilised in an ACO sanctioned series by the Corsa Motorsports Ginetta Zytek...

Principles of journal bearing design

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The purpose of a bearing is to support a load. Deflection of the journal within the bearing can adversely affect the load carrying ability of the bearing. This deflection can be greatly reduced by increasing the diameter of the journal and decreasing its length. This results in a short bearing with a consequential greater flow of oil out of the ends of the bearing. This outflow of oil transfers heat from the bearing and helps to reduce the bearing temperature.The factor which controls the...

Lift versus Duration

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So the next generation of British Touring Cars (BTCC) as far as we know at the moment will be 2.0 litre and turbocharged. Starting in 2011, the engines according to the initial press release, will need to be based on 4-cylinder production units and give something like 300 bhp with a 7000 rpm limit and 0.8 bar boost. Running through an inlet restrictor however, for the first time since 1999, camshafts will we were told, be totally unregulated. Way back then there were no restrictions on the...

Coatings for threaded fasteners

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As far as threaded fasteners are concerned, there are a large number of coatings which can be applied, and in doing so we are generally seeking to address one of a small number of issues, the main ones being: Corrosion- Material incompatibility- Friction- Lack of suitable lubrication In terms of addressing the problem of corrosion, the main candidates come from a list of metallic platings, although polymeric alternatives exist. The common types of plating aimed at limiting or delaying...