Wind tunnel problem impeding development – Ferrari

2012 Japanese Grand Prix

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Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali said their wind tunnel problem has had an effect on the development of their car.

During a press conference at Suzuka Domenicali was asked whether the difficulty the team have experienced correlating wind tunnel data with real-world results has impeded development of the F2012.

“I think that?���?� well, I’m sure that is happening also to other things,” said Domenicali. “I’ve seen above all in the second part of the season when we were trying to bring new updates on the car, that not all the updates were working on the track.”

“So, we start to investigate a little bit better and we’ve found that was this issue, that going into the deep analysis of the reason, we understood, we considered it was coming from the tool that is… not obsolete, but not really up to the speed of the new technologies that are available on the market.

“So, that was the reason why we are thinking to do that, to make sure that at the least the percentage of the things that we bring at the track is higher than what we have now.”

Ferrari brought a new rear wing to the last race at Singapore but decided not to use it in the race after running it during practice

Domenicali said the team’s wind tunnel “is not the best one in that respect, it is quite old”.

“We’re trying to improve the quality of the tools that we have. And this is something that we are trying to do mainly to improve the correlation issue that we had and this is the plan: that we should be able to do in the next season.”

Domenicali added: “It’s still open and we’re working in our wind tunnel. As you know we are using another facility and in the next couple of weeks we will define what is the problem to be more specific than that, in order to see what’s really the time we have to spend by shutting it down and trying to improve the things that are not at the maximum level at the moment.”

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    Keith Collantine
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    25 comments on “Wind tunnel problem impeding development – Ferrari”

    1. Ferrari should have sorted this problem out by now.. its been haunting them for a couple of years now.

      Ugh… I do not know which team is more disappointing – Mclaren for producing race winning cars but screwing up on the track, or Ferrari for doing consistently well on track but always screwing up on their car design.

      1. McLaren are the bigger disappointment. At least Ferrari still manage to do really well with their below-expectations car. McLaren don’t seem to be able to manage much of anything at the moment (in terms of whole-season results, that is).

        1. @ajk that logic works both ways. For example:

          Ferrari are the bigger disappointment. At least McLaren still manage to make fast cars. Ferrari don’t seem to be able to manage much of anything at the moment (in terms of car design and updates, that is).

    2. I seem to recall “our windtunnel has a problem and it’s hurting out development” was Honda’s favourite excuse in 2007 and 2008 …

      1. Indeed, that is a really lame excuse. Even if it is true, competing with outdated tools is an amateurish mistake (since Ferrari has enough money – or at least they can afford having Massa around).

        1. I know that Scuderia fans may disagree with me, but such excuses are floating around for the last two years.
          When you have a problem like that, which is totally crippling your championship ambitions, you either find a new tunnel, or you fix the current one with immediate effect, or third option is to stop using it at all and rely on CFD only.

          Ferrari did none of these, so there must be something else involved.
          We all know that there’s plenty of wind tunnels in UK, for example, there are Airbus specialist really close to Italy, there are tunnels all around Europe, German Aerospace Center (DLR)
          DLR Cologne as example, etc.

          1. The problems with the wind-tunnel definitely were around last year. I think their updates they brought to the F150th Italia last year were a step backwards due to the lack of correlation between their computer models and wind tunnel, with the tunnel being the problem. I think there may have been problems with 2010 in this area also.

            I was under the impression that they had fixed these problems before the start of this season, yet here we are again. Hopefully they can fix it, or manage to work around it quickly. Alonso cannot afford to end up fighting Lotus/Mercedes/Sauber in races, they should be mixing it with Red Bull and McLaren.

    3. Then find a new wind tunnel…! Many small teams don’t have a wind tunnel…!

    4. Those ppl who are responsible for this humiliation immediately expelled, this is just unacceptable.
      Luca and Domenicali also should join that group.


      1. Yes, leading the championship in a car that was nigh on undrivable six months ago is an “humilation”.

      2. Calm down. Tools by their very nature will become outdated and less useful. All they need is an upgrade, what’s wrong with that?

    5. Then buy a ******* new wind tunnel. Why is this even allowed to happen? Unless it’s part of RRA, which could then mean they didn’t have an option to spend that much money…

      1. @brace
        But why should Ferrari be the ones bying it?
        Ferrari is owned by Fiat, so couldn’t they (Fiat) just simply send one in the mail along with some flowers for Luca’s birthday?

    6. I saw Stefano this morning in the garage without headset, he just looked disfranchised from the team. Could their windtunnel be doing the same?…… And it seems Mr. Fry has used all the IP he brought from McLaren. Hard times ahead of Fred. No wonder he looked glum on the podium in Singapore.

    7. Will this have compromised the design of next year’s car as well? Or do they do wind tunnel work later in the development process?

    8. Build new one please!!

    9. So let me get this straight, Ferrari have basically had a default wind tunnel al year. Yet they turned a dog of a car into a race winning package?

      If it is true then they got the car the way it is on sheer luck! They say it is Alonso’s title to lose but if his team has a problem like this you better be in for a hell of a ride.

      1. If it is true then they got the car the way it is on sheer luck!

        They have been using CFD alongside the Toyota WindTunnel in Cologne.

    10. there is a belter one in colonge the old toyota one can they not use that again?

    11. If I remember correctly the reason why their wind tunnel has never been that great is because LDM wanted it to be a kind of sculpture, I think he brought in famous architect Renzo Piano… but that was against what aerodynamicist Willem Toet (now in Sauber) had originally planned and had to do a lot of compromises. They’re paying the price now that there is no testing.

      1. @mantresx
        Are you serious?

    12. Teams having these sort of problems with WindTunnel’s isn’t unheard of, Its actually more common than you sometimes hear & the speed of which its fixed varies depending on a number of things.

      As I understand it the problem Ferrari have & the reason its been a problem for as long as it has is that they initially mis-identified the problem. Initially in early 2011 they thought it was a calibration issue but have since found it to be something more serious.

      In the meantime they have CFD & the Toyota WindTunnel in Cologne which they have been using & thats where the successfull updates introduced to this years car have come from.

      1. Begs the question, why didn’t they stay put!?

    13. What is most disappointing was that this seemed to be behind them. They had an awful car for the first 4 GPs but then the transformation from midfielder to front runner was almost overnight. The car was right up there from Spain to Germany. Then it seemed well off the pace again with the exception of Monza. It feels a bit 2011 all over again.

    14. I believe it’s rubbish, Ferrari wouldn’t operate that way, Alonso wouldn’t stand for it. Dom is just covering his behind. Besides, is the Ferrari really that bad of a car??

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