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Rapid prototyping

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Having seen the extremely brisk pace of development in rapid prototyping methods over the past decade, it strikes me that this is a technology that stands to revolutionise the way we will come to make many parts for race engines. For a number of years there have been rapid prototype parts run on racecars on everything from Formula Student to Formula One. The method offers a way to have small numbers of complex parts made quickly and in a cost-effective manner, with the costs of design...

Electric motors

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Energy recovery, based on the capture, storage and re-use of braking energy is not new in motorsport, and several series had pioneered the technology before Formula One embraced it and called it KERS - and then let go fairly quickly before embracing it again for 2011! Whatever the method of storage and redeployment of energy though, the aims are the same: either more power and a quicker lap time, or the same lap time with greater fuel conversion efficiency. Greater efficiency is in keeping...

Bear in mind...

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In earlier RET-Monitor articles I have written about the application and challenges of lead-free bearings. Until now the focus has been on the main bearing shells, mainly linked to the crankcase main bearing bore shape and split line quality. In this article I will put focus on the application of lead-free bearings in the small end of the con rod, as well as the design features for creating a reliable small end. A number articles, in both Race Engine Technology magazine and here in...

Hydraulic tappets

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In the OE roadcar business, where noise and cost of ownership are major barriers to many prospective buyers, the hydraulic tappet has much to recommend it. But in the world of motorsports, where lightweight and efficient valvetrains are most desirable, their use is generally viewed with disdain - or so I thought until recently when, via the industry bush telegraph, I heard of a particular race team owner actually specifying hydraulic tappets in his latest engine. To recap, a hydraulic...

PVD coatings

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The subject of coatings in motorsports is a hot topic, and has been for some time. Coatings have proven to be a 'silver bullet' in curing some problems, or knocking down obstacles that stand in the way of improved performance and reliability. There remains a lot of development activity in the development of coatings, and increasing willingness in motorsports to work with coatings companies to find the correct solutions to problems or to develop new coatings. PVD (physical vapour...