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Reliability testing in Formula One

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With the ban on in-season testing, one of the greatest increase in uses of any other testing equipment is that of the power train transient dynamometer. Costing millions of pounds to buy and even more to run, these are used to simulate precisely the events experienced by the engine and transmission as if it were installed in a vehicle circulating around the track. Controlling not only the engine speed and load but just about every other parameter you can think of – air temperature...

Addressing the Envelope

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Today is the first of many strikes, or so we are told. The continuing dispute between management and unions in the Post Office has resulted in this, the first of a number of planned one-day stoppages across the UK on which the mere thought of reaching for an envelope and putting pen to paper is but the last thing on my mind. As engineers however, ‘addressing the envelope’ has an altogether different meaning. Other than a flat paper container with a sealable flap, to engineers an...

When to hit the red button!

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The author well remembers the first time he was given sole charge of overseeing the running in of an engine on the dynamometer of an un-named race engine manufacturer. The engine in question was the first ever example of a Le Mans Prototype V8 and the author’s role was to do nothing other than warm the engine up on a base map which would be followed by a check over before the real mapping work commenced. For around five minutes (no-one ever went through the data in much detail)...

Never Assume Anything

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Here’s a word of warning for you which highlights the importance of getting the basics right. The author recently visited a company who run a small water brake dynamometer for training purposes. The company recently came into possession of a brand new 4-cylinder Honda road car engine, donated to them by Honda as the car it had come from could not be sold and therefore needed to be disposed of. They were delighted; the Honda would replace an ageing Ford engine which had seen better days...

Winning with dynos

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Leading race engine manufacturer Engine Developments, of Rugby, Warwickshire, commissioned a new dynamometer data acquisition system earlier this year. The system incorporates the latest hardware and software technology in order to improve the dynamometer data acquisition capability to the benefit of the company internally and to its customers. The company, which manufactures Judd racing engines, has three dynamometer cells, all of which contain a Froude G490 water brake dynamometer. The...