How brake designs can explain the differences between Red Bull and Ferrari tyres

However, the Red Bull rival quickly made its stride, and since the summer break it has become more visible, especially at the race pace, as the RB18 appears to have a clear advantage in its tire management characteristics.

Much of the focus on performance swing has inevitably focused on aerial development, as it’s an area where all teams make a lot of changes throughout the year.

However, there are other aspects of the car’s design and setup that can play an important role in the package’s overall performance, which is why Ferrari’s tire headache may not be just a pneumatic thing.

Ferrari tires seem to have a higher tendency to overheat compared to Red Bull tyres. This is ideal for qualifying sessions as it helps run the tires, contributed by Leclerc and Carlos Sainz He’s still able to challenge for pole position so far.

However, during the constant heat cycle that tires go through during the race period, Ferrari can heat up more quickly than its main competitor, offsetting the strategic advantage it once had.

See how different tires perform on Red Bull and Ferrari Cars, it’s interesting to note that the two teams are on opposite sides of the fence when it comes to how they handle the heat management of their brakes.

This is especially true when we consider the relationship this has with wheel rim and tire temperature.

2022 brake disc base
brake lining comparison

This is an area where teams spent a significant amount of their resources during the previous set of regulations, but the introduction of the new rules for 2022 has largely reset this research and development.

The arrival of the standard 18-inch wheel rim led to several changes in dimensions, as the discs at the front of the vehicle are now required to be between 325 and 330 mm, instead of 278 mm.

Moreover, the drilling holes that reach through the disc must be at least 3 mm, which changes the way heat is transmitted and also the behavior of airflow as well.

In addition, there is a requirement to reject airflow passing through the brake assembly only through a rear-facing port, while the differentials previously forced this out through the wheel face for added aerodynamic effect.

Ferrari F1-75 . Front Brake

Ferrari F1-75 . Front Brake

photo from photography: Giorgio Beola

In response to these changes, we’ve seen Red Bull, McLarenAnd the Alfa Romeo And the Alfa Tauri adopts internal fluidity of the disc brake. mercedes And the Williams I applied a semi-fair solution as well.

Meanwhile, Ferrari, AlpsAnd Aston Martin and Haas are the four teams that left the disc exposed inside the now larger brake drum, oversized to fit the enlarged wheel well.

McLaren’s first attempts to use the aerodynamic solution didn’t come without its own drama. While the MCL36 looked very competitive during the first pre-season test in Barcelona, ​​when she arrived in Bahrain, she quickly realized she had to make changes due to the high temperature.

McLaren MCL36 Front Brakes

McLaren MCL36 front brake

photo from photography: Giorgio Beola

This resulted in the original carbon fiber concept being dropped and a metallic version put into service in the meantime, while an extensive redesign could be completed.

The new version, which made it to the Spanish Grand Prix (right), resulted in a much larger fairing and required rerouting the cold air ducts to the calipers.

While other teams using this aerodynamic solution didn’t have the glaring issues McLaren had, they also spent the entire season refining their designs to improve performance.

Using Red Bull as an example, it’s easy to see how small changes led to a performance breakthrough, as the exposed insulation padding used in its original design (below, left) was removed when the team redesigned the aerodynamic shape.

The aerodynamics then received several iterative shape changes to help mitigate heat transfer between the brakes and the rim and tires (down, right, red arrow, for example)

Red Bull RB18 front brake assembly

Red Bull RB18 front brake assembly

Image source: Uncredited

In its quest to help manage this temperature transition, the team also applied a thermochromic coating to the fairing and (see interiors, below).

Given that Ferrari has already announced that it will not introduce any new major racing parts in the closing stages of the season, we can’t expect to see an F1-75 version of its competition’s approach.

However, this does not mean that Scuderia has not taken a close interest in its competitors and may look to incorporate something similar next season.

Red Bull RB18 front brake comparison

Red Bull RB18 front brake comparison

photo from photography: Giorgio Beola

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