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FIA 2014 Formula One regulations published - with surprises

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July 25, 2011

The FIA published their revised technical regulations for 2014 Formula One season last wee...

The FIA published their revised technical regulations for 2014 Formula One season last week and they never fail to surprise

The FIA (Fédération International de l'Automobile) published its revised technical regulations for 2014 Formula One season last week. Having caused uproar amongst the engine manufacturers and F1 fans with a proposal for replacing the naturally aspirated V8s of today with turbo-charged 4-cylinder engines, an agreement was finally reached amongst the various interested parties to introduce turbo-charged V6s of 1.6 liter displacement. The continuing effort by the the FIA to "green" the sport and push development still provided a number of surprises in the published regulations, however.

The biggest shock is that the cars will have to move under electrical power only in the pit lane. Engine ignition and fuel systems must be shut off. This has a number of ramifications. To ensure there is enough power to move the cars quickly in and out of the pit lane, the capacity of energy recovery systems has been increased to 120kW. To ensure that amount of power is available, in addition to the mechanical energy recovery system (today's KERS) there will be allowed a heat energy recovery system that operates off the exhaust gases. The most interesting consequence is that the cars will have to carry their own starter motors under the control of the driver, since the engine will need re-starting the moment they exit the pit lane.

There are a number of other changes - the width of the front wing is reduced to 1,650 mm (65 inches), less than the width of the car, and the construction of the front and rear wings has been more strictly defined, in part to reduce the number of front wing collisions. The minimum weight of the car has been increased by 20 kg/44 lbs (in consideration of the weight of the energy recovery systems), plus the eight forward gear ratios and the mandatory reverse must be declared at the beginning of the season and cannot be changed - although for 2014 only, the teams will be allowed to change them once.

There is always wailing and gnashing of teeth at each new development of the world's most advanced racing formula. The circuit owners are very concerned that the reduction in maximum revs (down to 15,000 rpm) and the use of turbos will severely reduce the noise level that is part of motor racing. Those of us that remember the last time turbos were used will share those concerns.

The mandatory use of electrical power in the pit lanes could be a stroke of genius however, since this instantaneous switching between combustion and electrical engines is likely to be a very common real-world scenario. It is after all the justification of F1 that its technology trickles down to the High Street and Autobahn, and you can be sure that there will be intense development of the "re-starter" motors by the teams - pit stops will be fascinating. Team mechanics are going to have to keep their eyes peeled at all times for cars arriving in the pits - they won't be able to hear them.

The complete list of the revised regulations can be viewed as a PDF file.

About the Author
Vincent Rice Vincent Rice has been an audio-visual design consultant for almost 30 years including six years with Warner Brothers Cinemas. He has designed several large retail installations in London and a dozen major nightclubs across the world from Belfast to Brno to Beruit. An accomplished musician and 3D computer graphics artist, Vince also writes for AV Magazine in the U.K. and the Loudscreen digital signage blog.   All articles by Vincent Rice
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25 Comments

Formula one is a tax payer funded scam anyway.

A big area around the race track drowning in engine noise... for MILES and MILES.

Hugely expensive tickets even for the most shittiest of seats... I mean standing positions.

All the scam artist vendors selling 1 hotdog, in a white goo-bread roll and a coke for like $20, that usually comes from the supermarket for $2.

Crowds and toilets...

Formula one should be scrapped - it's batch of vampires going from one land to the next sucking the places dry.

Rule changes? It's nothing being done that is not already available - and much of it by the ordinary people.

Mr Stiffy
25th July, 2011 @ 06:40 pm PDT

Seems to me that in many respects the real world has overtaken Formula 1. Can't quite see any of the benefits F1 is providing to everyday drivers, that haven't already been generated by the energy crisis.

johnniesazzler
25th July, 2011 @ 08:14 pm PDT

and most of the new hybrid cars, just FASTER not more fuel efficient, most disgusting, the manufacturers and the buying public need to realize it is about conservation, not faster, so many stupid people on this planet, a Mickie BenZ AMG in the headlines for days 0 to 62 mph in less than 4 seconds, oh please, that is so last century, so sad for humanity, we will kill ourselves

Bill Bennett
25th July, 2011 @ 09:52 pm PDT

Even if they invent nothing new, the money they invest in making things light and reliable is appreciated.

Expensive tickets, monopoly pricing from the vendors, and lines for the toilets is expected and if the hosting city does not think they are getting their money's worth, they don't have to renew the contract.

Slowburn
25th July, 2011 @ 10:08 pm PDT

@Mr Stiffy, @johnniesazzler, @Bill Bennett

I don't know who you are or what your are doing in your lifes but hope to be really good to what you are doing and very healthy and i am sure you are since most of your everyday life that i believe it is getting better, are due to innovations that either implemeting and sent to the limit or inveted in F1.

Highest examples are all the new materials that make our life better and reducing C02 footprints came from F1 so that to fly for your holidays, to break safer while driving your car, making your helmet stronger when riding your bike, and so many other examples...not to mention inventions that lead direct to medical inventions that save lifes...

For something to be able to say it is bad or good, you have to look not only the direct impact it has in life, but the indirect also...

johnpsom
26th July, 2011 @ 02:43 am PDT

You do not need a starter to start an engine if you are already at speed. Just pop the clutch. The problem, of course, is that the vehicle will be decelerating using this procedure where it should be accelerating. But a starter is not necessary.

Brillig
26th July, 2011 @ 08:16 am PDT

I wish the MotoGP organisers were as imaginative when changing the regs as the F1 people are!

paulblez
26th July, 2011 @ 09:30 am PDT

johnpsom just name anything and I will bet it was the aerospace industry that introduced it and the F1 industry made use of it.

You need to expand your interests beyond F1.

dgate
26th July, 2011 @ 09:44 am PDT

Hi, what a superb opportunity for F1 .....

Thousands of motoring fans have taken to using Hydrogen Supplementation in their cars so; why not F1 ?

Read why F1 should do so, here ... http://preview.tinyurl.com/5skps4g

Less fuel would be used, better running would probably be experienced - and emissions free exhausts would become the 'standard'.

The FiA is seeking lower noise emissions - so why not go the whole way and achieve virtually emissions free exhausts too ?

Worldwide - millions of road miles a day for years have never produced a broken or damaged engine - to my knowledge.

The world's motoring communities are - daily - delivering cleaner driving - AND GREATLY REDUCED CARBON FOOTPRINTS FROM EVERY HYDROGEN SUPPLEMENTED VEHICLE ON THE PLANET - with greater fuel economy; and whilst cleaning up their engines and making them last longer.

C'mon FiA ... even if you don't make it a rule change this year ... tell the teams they are at liberty to use Hydrogen Supplementation. That would be a great message to the fan base - and a REAL CHALLENGE to Big Oil, Big Motor and Big Government.

Let's hear it from the fans .......................!!!!!!!

millgate
26th July, 2011 @ 10:05 am PDT

@Mr Stiffy: with exception of the 'taxpayer' comment, how does this differ from football, basketball, hockey, baseball, Nascar, Tour d' France, rugby, futbol, Indy/Champ car, etc, etc, etc, etc...it is still Billionaires employing Millionaires to put on a show to alleviate us from the pennies we actually work for!!!

If you despise it so, do as I do: DON'T GO! Stay home, pay your pound of flesh to your preferred video supplier, and watch it on tv in the air-conditioned, multi-camera view comfort of your very own hovel...and buy your hotdogs and soda-water at your favorite outlet store.

As to the 'taxpayer' funding, I'm sure big bad Bernie (that's Ecclestone, not Madoff) would LOVE to scam those stupid Americans out of free money to put on his show, but instead he does it to the tracks and teams...they just pass it on to you and smile!

L8RB
26th July, 2011 @ 10:10 am PDT

Face reality, people. Racing, any kind of racing, isn't about being green, it's about going faster than your opponent. Even bicycle racing isn't green: how much money and energy do you think is spent designing and building a racing bicycle that weighs less than 15 lbs and is made out of carbon fiber and unobtainium? How much application to real world use does that bicycle have? (hint: next to none).

Even as inefficient as F1 cars are, the impact to energy consumption and pollution is negligible, simply because there are only 24 of them. Even the impact of sending them all over the world is trivial compared to the tens of thousands of commercial, cargo and military flights that occur every day. Abolishing F1 would make no difference in the environment. Eliminating cars from downtown NY would accomplish more.

As for the rules changes, the fixed gearbox ratios rule is just idiotic. Another artificial attempt to stimulate competition, because some teams will choose rations that are better at certain tracks, and other teams will pick rations that work better at different ones. Just silly. Teams should be able to choose the ratios that suit each track best.

F1 keeps saying they need to make the sport cheaper, then they keep making rules changes that force teams to spend millions of dollars to build new designs. They'd save more money by just leaving the rules alone for the next 10 years.

bobmeyerweb
26th July, 2011 @ 12:11 pm PDT

All the grousers are first on the comments' scene as usual with their puerile moaning.

The terrible noise and disruption described is for one weekend a year at each venue, whilst bringing cash into the surrounding economy, and pleasure to millions around the globe.

The autotechnicians are the best in the world, the drivers are the best in the world, the fans are keen and don't roll around drunk, swearing and fighting, the innovations are valuable.

Long live F1, I just love it. Maybe the biggest plus though.....it upsets Mr. Stiffy et al.

Ian Colley.

TexByrnes
26th July, 2011 @ 03:30 pm PDT

F1 was great, once; back when industry found ways to commercialize the technological breakthroughs developed within the series. Then someone who probably doesn't drive said, 'we should use F1 to develop technologies we'd like to see in road cars.' And now look at what we have; reliability, safety and limits. Limits on this and limits on that; shorten this and remove that. Get rid of it all. Make it dangerous again; make it worth watching again.

Please, please, please let F1 be what it was when I was young; guts and risk. Make the cars so fast that not even an average F1 driver may take full advantage of the vehicle's performance; let the teams power the cars however they want. F1 is no place for those with limited budgets. Go to NASCAR if you can't afford F1.

But no; the nancy's have had their way and now we have to manufacture ways to inprove the show; seems to me it's like F1 has been put on life support.

Christopher Porozny
26th July, 2011 @ 03:42 pm PDT

PDF Regulations link here :http://argent.fia.com/web/fia-public.nsf/A0425C3A0A7D69C0C12578D3002EBECA/$FILE/2014_F1_TECHNICAL_REGULATIONS_-_Published_on_20.07.pdf

By the way, ESP, ABS, TC, Active Suspension, etc. have been direct benefits from racing, F1 racing.

Jesús Arenas
26th July, 2011 @ 05:15 pm PDT

Ralph Nader and the Sierra Club will love F1 soon, I suppose. Electric power on pit road is absolutely PC and nothing else, except maybe stupid.

Run full electric cars if everyone is so interested in developing them.

No wonder no one in America watches F1.

Guy Macher
26th July, 2011 @ 05:27 pm PDT

i agree with u Christopher Porozny.They have severely cheapened the experience that is F1. It will neva go back to the way it was b4. :( lol

waiel
26th July, 2011 @ 06:52 pm PDT

Formula One - Bah humbug.

Mr Stiffy
26th July, 2011 @ 07:03 pm PDT

If you're into racing cars, then F1 has, this year, shown that there is actual racing with passing. The regs amount to 77 pages, hence a study of the overall package might be required before adding useful comment d;-)

Jetwax
26th July, 2011 @ 09:34 pm PDT

They want competition....change the rules as follows.

The engine can be no larger than 1 liter and must be a diesel. Then they can all run biodiesel, or better yet, used fry oil to make the fans hungry for more snacks.

NASCAR needs a similar update. They have been running restrictor plates on the V-8's for decades now as the car were just to fast without it. HELLO! Run a smaller engine and let development start all over.

VoiceofReason
26th July, 2011 @ 10:35 pm PDT

@dgate

I do have my horizons open, but because you challenge my engineering knowledge here we are:

Disk brakes

Aerodynamic shapes - Remeber silver arrows?

Jet engines - introduced in motorsports for braking the speed world record

Drive by Wire - it was first F1 cars that introduce that years before aircraft started

Composite materials - Most of the modern techniques for production of complex surfaces were introduced in F1 and in car racing general

Electronics - nothing to say

see the idea of my comment before was that you do need to accept that all fields have made their contributions to humanity. There is no need to put away one field instead of another. It is not a competition between F1, racing, aerospace, etc...

This is the idea of evolution...

johnpsom
27th July, 2011 @ 12:34 am PDT

Seriously, why doesn't F1 just go straight to the Flintstone-mobile and get all of this "green" bullshit over with? Could they ruin the greatest form of car racing any more than they already have? Yes, as seen in these new rule changes.

This is what happens when you have a bunch of Euro-Socialist countries that are obsessed with being "green". Well, we see how well "green" works in Spain.

Motor racing is about nothing other than pure speed, acceleration and close racing -- anything less is bullshit racing.

Why don't we just start all of the cars at the top of a hill with a wooden, no that's not "green", track -- better make it a track constructed of recycled plastic trash/grocery bags. Let them all coast down the hill and whichever car reaches the Finish line first wins! Hey, didn't I do that as a young boy back in the 1960s with my Hot Wheels cars?

The FIA has ruined F1. Go back to the heyday of the mid 90s with mega horsepower and some exciting racing. Look how Ralley racing has been ruined. Those cars look and drive like those three-wheel putt-putt cars in Europe from the 1960s and 1970s. What a joke.

I digress...

Bill Near
27th July, 2011 @ 06:53 am PDT

Want a solution? Get France out of international sporting competition control and regulation. How did France get to be top dog in in this? Why does France control the historically Greek Olympics? At the Olympics, announcements are always done first in French, then the host country's language, then English, then Greek - as a nod to the historic olympic games of Greece.

The only time French should be on that list is when the games' host country is a place where French is the official language.

The French also control football (soccer) which is in no way a game that began in France, nor have French teams dominated the sport. So why does France control it?

As for NASCAR, it got to its current state from cheaters. Instead of just saying "No. You can't do that because it's NOT how the car came from the factory. The S in NASCAR is for STOCK." the rules makers let cheaters through the decades bully them into converting many of the cheats into rules - until to build a "stock" car left so little of the original car it was simpler to build fake cars from scratch. All the bodies are identical in shape, the chassis are all virtually identical even though built by different shops. The engines are built by different companies yet also nearly all identical. All the rear axles are based on the venerable Ford 9" - which Ford itself hasn't produced for road vehicles in many years.

NASCAR should start a new division by getting out their 1948 rulebook and updating it only as much as needed for safety purposes. In other words make it so that anyone can buy a car off a dealer lot, make the modifications then go racing without having to spend millions of dollars. Once the rules are finalized, allow ZERO exceptions. If you can't buy the part over a dealer's parts counter, it can't go on the race car - just like it used to be 50 years ago!

One of the biggest opportunities in motorsports development was crushed in the 1960's when gas turbines were banned from Indy cars. They'd go like stink for most of the 500 miles but since they were running gasoline instead of jet fuel (which is basically like diesel or kerosene) they ran hotter and had less lubrication, thus always failed shortly before the end. A far better solution would have been a 400 mile race at Indy for turbine powered cars.

Gregg Eshelman
27th July, 2011 @ 02:55 pm PDT

I miss the V10 dearly...

rderion
14th August, 2011 @ 08:18 am PDT

What a shame. The FIA is bound and determined to put the final nail in the coffin of what was once the very best racing series in the world. Formula 1 used to be a nearly unlimited class - build the very best, lightest, fastest car and GO WIN! The Can Am days back in the 70s were even better. That was a truly unlimited class that produced some of the best racing and some of the finest, fastest cars ever. Which, by the way, is what racing is all about in case you have forgotten. Beating your opponent with superior skill and a superior car. A 1.6 liter V6? What a waste of time. They may as well just put them all in Priuses and let them go at it.

I'm afraid that after this year I'll be done with F1 - Thanks, Bernie, you idiot.

Raptorreport
15th March, 2013 @ 12:37 pm PDT

Oh man! Yes, I do miss CanAm as well. Great memories of going to those races. But, not to fret. Every time F1 has had rule changes to attempt to "tame" it, it's backfired. In the early `60s when engines were downsized severely, all it did was make for lighter and faster cars once the smaller engines were tuned properly. I remember in the late `80s when they banned ground-effect configurations, it didn't really slow things down much. Drivers had to develop some new cornering skills, though. And then, when the Honda turbo engines were killing the competition and they were then banned. Well, then Honda's normall aspirated engines just went on to do the same thing.

The 2014 rule changes won't make things any less exciting. Personally though, I prefer the days when wings and airfoils were illegal in F1. The racing was much more exciting to watch then. (and the cars were prettier too!)

Patrick Taylor
16th March, 2013 @ 09:12 pm PDT
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