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Old 02-07-2012, 12:17 PM   #214
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Joined: Sep 2009
Location: Oakland, Kalli Fornia
Oddometer: 688
Originally Posted by doyle View Post
The limit becomes one of geometry. The upper and lower wishbones have to be a certain distance apart on order for the wheel/upright to maintain the proper angles through it's movement. That said, most of this nose issue is prompted on the new rule that the nose height may not exceed 550mm due to the fact that some noses were getting too close to the cockpit minimum height of 625mm. The difference between the bulkhead/chassis placement and the nose height restriction is why the hump noses are now appearing. Simply moving the suspension down may help with CoG, but it then interferes with the aerodynamics through the massively important frontal zone which serves to channel the airflow to the most critical of areas, under the car and around the sidepods. The more 'free' area under the nose, the better they are able to control and sculpt the airflow. The last thing they want is to have to incorporate clunky suspension bits there.
That makes sense, but the problem I see is that in stepping the nose you're creating a lot of drag and turbulent air. Why not give it a series of curves to achieve the same goals but without the step (a la McLaren)? For some reason I can't see an aerodynamicist liking that shape, in that area, on an otherwise slippery chassis.
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