Renault's F1 involvement is not limited to Viry-ChÃ¢tillon and Enstone. The Technocentre at Guyancourt is also part of the winning team. Here's how. Renault's Guyancourt Technocentre is an ultra-modern technical base, a nerve centre for the...
Renault's F1 involvement is not limited to Viry-Châtillon and Enstone. The Technocentre at Guyancourt is also part of the winning team. Here's how.
Renault's Guyancourt Technocentre is an ultra-modern technical base, a nerve centre for the entire Renault Group. It is where the company's newest models take shape, from the design stages, to mechanical platforms and production technologies. Since 2000, this invaluable resource has also had another mission: playing its role in the Formula 1 programme.
"The aim was to provide skills in very specific technical areas according to the F1 team's needs," explains the man who started the project, Bertand Dumas. "In return, the Technocentre employees benefit from the experience of a unique working environment driven by intense competition." The programme is now in its sixth year.
Didier Defrasnes is the man with day-to-day responsibility for the F1 Partnership at Guyancourt. From the 8000 Technocentre employees, 16 were dedicated to the F1 programme in 2005 (10 at Enstone and 6 in Viry). "We don't want this opportunity to seem like a break in our employees' careers," he explains.
"It has to work as a springboard for them, and bring them experience and training in new areas. Our aim is to let people acquire skills using a different approach to that we have in Guyancourt, primarily thanks to shorter working cycles. These Technocentre employees work at the heart of the F1 programme until they return home."
The sixteen employees collaborate on numerous programmes. Among them are...
1. Optimising combustion: internal aerodynamic calculations on the engine. The power developed by the engine passes through the quality of its combustion.
2. Chassis control systems: this work concentrates primarily on how the car can be used in a 'degraded state', when systems are not operating at 100%.
3. Vibration management: this is a sector where the Technocentre has been particularly valuable recently. The work concerns engine auxiliary components as well as driver comfort.
4. Improving quality/reliability: Guyancourt focuses on establishing working practices that will enable improved vehicle reliability.
5. Off-car software: the software used at the track, particularly those dealing with telemetry data from the car, cannot contain any bugs. Guyancourt helps fine-tune the programming.
6. Engine optimisation: the mathematical tools used by Renault's Research Department assist in the search for engine performance.
7. Materials: Renault's Materials Department is often consulted in order to improve the team's database of new materials.
8. Engine reliability: two people work on monitoring the engines at the track to assess problems, or evaluate the life cycle remaining on specific components. The aim is to optimise component design, and maintain engine reliability throughout two race weekends.