A. Benedetto, A. Calvi, M. Messina

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Pages: 127-138

In this paper the authors present the first results of a study for analyzing the engineering problems in the design and improvement of a Formula 1 or competition circuit and for the optimization of the pilots’ race performances. The authors have used a driving simulator. The physical and mechanical characteristics of the simulated vehicle have been improved in order to reproduce as possible a competition vehicle. For the tests we have simulated the urban circuit of Rome that has been recently proposed. The circuit is 6056 m long, the maximum longitudinal slope is 3.5% and the curve radii are between 8 and 400 m. The geometrical standards of the circuit are basically coherent with the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) regulations. Two professional pilots have been requested to drive for the tests. During the tests we have observed an average speed of the best lap compatible with the speeds observed in analogous urban circuits. After the tests the time histories of longitudinal speed, longitudinal and transversal acceleration have been post processed. Moreover the vehicle trajectory and lateral displacement have been analyzed on the average and in the case of the best lap. Finally the rate between used and available friction has been studied following a two dimensional approach. In particular three curves have been isolated as most critical being the rate between used and available friction over 0.80. These mentioned rates have been visualized on the maps so that the spatial distribution of used friction is in evidence.

Keywords: driving simulation; Formula 1; friction; trajectory analysis; longitudinal speed

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