Formula 1, the world's most prestigious motor racing competition, has teamed with Amazon Web Services, Inc. or AWS, an Amazon.com company, to develop next generation car for 2021 racing season.
AWS and Formula One Group, a unit of Liberty Media Corp., have completed a Computational Fluid Dynamics or CFD project, investigating how the aerodynamics of cars interact when racing. According to the company, the core of the CFD project was enabling closer, wheel-to-wheel, racing.
For Formula 1 or F1 cars, the downforce generated by their aerodynamics is the single largest performance differentiator, helping a car travel faster through corners. At present, a car running one car length behind another loses up to 50 percent of its downforce.
With a view to reduce the downforce loss, F1 used Amazon's technology to observe how the aerodynamics of cars interact during race in close proximity.
The project used over 1,150 compute cores to run detailed simulations comprising over 550 million data points that model the impact of one car's aerodynamic wake on another. F1, using the scalability of AWS, was able to reduce the average time to run simulations by 70 percent to 18 hours from 60 hours. Also, with the insights gained from these simulations, F1 has been able to design a car with only 15 percent downforce loss at the same, one car length distance.
Amazon noted that the project ran for six months using Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud or Amazon EC2 c5n instances. It delivered performance equivalent to that of a supercomputer, for a small fraction of the cost.
The project would result in a car featuring a brand new bodywork design with a new front wing shape, simplified suspension, new rear end layout, underfloor tunnels, and wheel wake control devices. It will run on 18-inch wheels with low profile tyres for the first time.
Pat Symonds, Chief Technical Officer of F1 said, "This project with AWS was one of the most revolutionary in the history of Formula 1 aerodynamics. ...We have been able to use AWS technologies to understand the incredible aerodynamic complexities associated with multi-car simulations."