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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
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KERS not helping Ferrari tyres
01 April 2009

The Ferrari team claims that the new Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS) is resulting in tyre worries for the team. The unit, which allows drivers to make use of a small boost of power during the race, adds an estimated 40 kilograms of weight to the car and it is this, the Italian team says, which is causing the problems when using the Super Soft Bridgestone tyre compound.

"The softer tyres have caused many problems for Ferrari, as well as other teams," team principal Stefano Domenicali explained to Italy's Gazzetta dello Sport. "An important thing to understand is that the performance of the tyres is linked to the use of KERS - there are many things that we need to understand these days."

Reigning World Champions for constructors, Ferrari has already admitted that Felipe Massa was using too agressive a strategy in Melbourne, as they switched their driver to a 3-stop strategy during the Grand Prix; despite the shorter stints, the Ferrari still struggled with the Super Soft tyres. "Kubica had a strategy like ours, but the BMW did not destroy its tyres like we did, especially at the rear" Domenicali continued. "Something we must consider is the weight distribution of the car and how it affects the tyres, particularly with KERS onboard - we need to discovery how to solve this problem, but still be able to use KERS".
 

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Hmm - not so sure.
An f1 car ready to rock with min fuel is circa 400kgs/880 lbs.

Throw in a driver of say 75kg/165lbs and some fuel you'd be looking at a ready to race setup of about 500kgs/1100lbs with min allowed weight of 605kg/1331lbs.

If KERS is 40kgs all in there is still a huge scope for ballast placing. Also many of the teams running the electrical system sacrifice some fuel tank volume for the battery unit to reduce the weight effect and polar inertia.

My view is that Ferrari (and it wasn't any secret pre-season) are having lots of problems with their system where as other teams/drivers can make it work better.

If you look at the on board video with data overlay Hamilton only really used the kers on straights when he was appraoching top speed. In fact he often used it just on the long start finish straight where you can KERS before the line and as soon as you cross the start/finish line you get a KERS reset which he would use immediately - effectively boosting the whole start finsih straight. Definately much easier on the tyres.

Masa appeared to be boosting out of the corners which is always going to wear the rears alot more esp on soft tyres.
 

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cant you opt out of the KERS system on your car and have a weight reduction which is supposed to keep things equal, vs KERS and non-KERS cars?
i thought i heard that comment during the race that all teams are not using it.

ferrari sucked this last race:clap:, and i think they are now just crying because they got their asses kicked badly.

persoanlly i like the "new order" of things in F1 with the potential of all teams being competive, not just MCL, and ferrari duking it out up front.
 

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cant you opt out of the KERS system on your car and have a weight reduction which is supposed to keep things equal, vs KERS and non-KERS cars?
i thought i heard that comment during the race that all teams are not using it.

ferrari sucked this last race:clap:, and i think they are now just crying because they got their asses kicked badly.

persoanlly i like the "new order" of things in F1 with the potential of all teams being competive, not just MCL, and ferrari duking it out up front.
It's optional this year, mandatory starting in 2010.
 

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how about that triangle warning symbol for the trackcrew to know whether or not its safe to touch the car and not get zapped by the system.

holy crap!!!!

so how does the driver not get buzzed from this set-up?
 

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^ I was wondering about that as well (driver safety). What's the use of a HANS device, if there is a danger of getting electrocuted in case of a big crash ?
 

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not all the cars had KERS onboard. Kubica didn't, but Heidfeld did, IIRC. strictly because of their weight differences. BMW were testing cars' performance for each. Vettel did not have KERS on board, either. So no KERS they were 2nd and 3rd place...hmmm...that is until they felt the need to get physical with one another. Save that sh*t for the hotel room. :D :eek:

makes sense anyway. Less weight = better tire wear.
 

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KERS not helping Ferrari tyres
01 April 2009

..."despite the shorter stints, the Ferrari still struggled with the Super Soft tyres. 'Kubica had a strategy like ours, but the BMW did not destroy its tyres like we did, especially at the rear' Domenicali continued. "..."we need to discovery how to solve this problem, but still be able to use KERS".
What's ironic is it turns out Kubica wasn't running KERS in Australia. Maybe that's why he didn't "destroy his tires." Heidfeld was using KERS, though, since he weighs quite a bit less than Kubica. Kubica is apparently undecided if he will run KERS in Malaysia, as well.

Tom
 

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I have a couple if thoughts on KERS can the car be started if the driver stalls by using the KERS to get some forward momentum? What about if they are running out of fuel can you feather (turn on briefly) the KERS system to get you into the pits?

These scenarios all assume the KERS system is charged. Anybody know??
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I have a couple if thoughts on KERS can the car be started if the driver stalls by using the KERS to get some forward momentum? What about if they are running out of fuel can you feather (turn on briefly) the KERS system to get you into the pits?

These scenarios all assume the KERS system is charged. Anybody know??
Don't know about the first question, but interesting idea. KERS doesn't work below 100MPH, so #2 would be hard to do. I'm sure they COULD engineer it to work that way, but the rules don't allow it right now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
so is the KERS system a way to show all the "greenies" that these cars are now hybrids, and doing something to "save the enviornment"?
Something like that. Racing in general has come under the gun for being wasteful of fossil fuels, so different series' are doing different things to give the appearance of being in touch with the times. Audi did the TDI diesels, F1 is doing KERS, IndyCar does methanol. They're all token efforts, done more for the PR factor than for any real changes.
 

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I have a couple if thoughts on KERS can the car be started if the driver stalls by using the KERS to get some forward momentum? What about if they are running out of fuel can you feather (turn on briefly) the KERS system to get you into the pits?

These scenarios all assume the KERS system is charged. Anybody know??
Doubt very much you could push start a modern f1 car. The valves are pneumatic and need a bloody big air compressor to get the car to fire and it doesn't do it first time.

As for cruising into the pits... you could but if you get your fuel strategy so badly wrong to need it then you've got bigger problems.

There's no benefits to having KERS with regard to weight limits. All cars fitted or not fitted with KERS can not weight less than 605kg (including driver) at the end of the race.

so is the KERS system a way to show all the "greenies" that these cars are now hybrids, and doing something to "save the enviornment"?
kinda... In A1GP drivers have a boost button that they can use 3 times per lap for a few seconds. This just removes the rev limit dictated by the rules. It was found to add more bit of strategy and encourage overtaking.

The systems in the F1 cars are going to be considerably more advanced than anything in a road car probably for the next 5-10 years. But it does encourage development that will get more mainstream.
 

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As for cruising into the pits... you could but if you get your fuel strategy so badly wrong to need it then you've got bigger problems.
oh, i dunno. do you remember the ALMS race last year? Who was it, ran out of fuel on the last lap, just before the start/finish line and was passed by 2 other cars and lost a podium.

There's no benefits to having KERS with regard to weight limits. All cars fitted or not fitted with KERS can not weight less than 605kg (including driver) at the end of the race.
not weight limits, but certainly weight distribution.
 

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...i'd prefer that KERS was mechanically discharge-recharge limited rather than simply resetting each lap - its current implementation is too contrived and videogamey for my tastes...

"Ooh, hit the turbo button, Annie!" - my SO reliving her arcade podracing days during the australian grand prix
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Doubt very much you could push start a modern f1 car. The valves are pneumatic and need a bloody big air compressor to get the car to fire and it doesn't do it first time.
F1 cars are started with normal electric starter motors. The pneumatic valve system is sealed, and has no bearing on it. A possible reason they might not be able to push start is that the transmission is hydraulically controlled, and with no hydraulic pressure, there is no way to shift the box.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
...i'd prefer that KERS was mechanically discharge-recharge limited rather than simply resetting each lap - its current implementation is too contrived and videogamey for my tastes...

"Ooh, hit the turbo button, Annie!" - my SO reliving her arcade podracing days during the australian grand prix
Only one team is working on a mechanical KERS, using a flywheel for storage. It remains to be seen if it's any more effective than the battery-based type.
 

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Only one team is working on a mechanical KERS, using a flywheel for storage. It remains to be seen if it's any more effective than the battery-based type.
...i mightn't have been clear - i don't mean mechanical versus electrical recharge/discharge cycles, i mean physics-based versus lap-based recharge/discharge cycles...
 
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