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Pin Critical

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The article on Advanced Metals last month looked at some of the titanium alloys currently being used in racing engines, and some of the alloys currently under development. The article mentioned that, despite restrictions on the introduction of new materials in Formula One, the engine manufacturers continue to invest time and resources to investigate materials development. The two main uses for titanium in racing engines currently are con rods and valves, although there have been efforts to...

KERS Success

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The veil of secrecy which has surrounded Formula One’s most successful KERS system was partially lifted recently when Zytek Automotive were unveiled as motor and power electronics supplier for the Formula One KERS system as fitted to the 2.4 litre Mercedes-Benz FO 108W V8 engine.The KERS system was developed and brought up to racing standard in 24 months by Mercedes-Benz High Performance Engines in collaboration with Daimler / Mercedes-Benz Research & Development. Zytek were one of...

Bearing the brunt

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For all of its engine bearing needs in NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (CWTS) engines, PME Engines of Mooresville, North Carolina has researched heavily to meet its main and rod end requirements. On a mile-and-a-half oval like Chicagoland Speedway, where the CWTS raced the final weekend of August, PME owner Mark Smith acknowledged that he is “always fighting temperatures because they never lift here. They’re running wide open throttle all the time, so the temperatures are...

A Material World

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If you were to compare an engine of today with one built, say for instance 50 years ago, no doubt much will have changed. Cylinder head layout, block construction, pistons, rods and cranks have all changed in their various ways. But the one component that is outwardly very similar, having changed very little in that time, is the camshaft. That is not to say there has been little development over the years. Hollow cams, smaller cams, bigger cams, even multiple cams per valve have all been...

Alternatives to DLC

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Whilst DLC seems clearly to be the favourite coating at the moment, there are some applications where it isn’t necessarily favoured, for various reasons. One area where ‘traditional’ DLC coatings have struggled is in applications where temperatures are significant. The DLC coating begins to degrade at quite a low temperature in comparison with other coatings, such as titanium nitride (TiN) for example. Many of the more common and traditional coatings were developed years...