Giorgio Piola's F1 technical analysis
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Giorgio Piola's F1 technical analysis

Tech gallery: How the Sauber C36 evolved throughout 2017

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Tech gallery: How the Sauber C36 evolved throughout 2017
Matt Somerfield
By: Matt Somerfield
Dec 14, 2017, 1:13 PM

A selection of the best technical images of Sauber's 2017 challenger, the C36, courtesy of Giorgio Piola, Sutton Images and LAT Images.

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Pre-season testing

Pre-season testing
1/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The C36 with the exhaust relatively high up and a C-shaped monkey seat placed beneath in order to alter the shape of the plume being dispatched by the exhaust.

Pre-season testing

Pre-season testing
2/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Changes to the bargeboards and sidepod airflow conditioners were implemented in Barcelona - a pre-bargeboard added (blue arrow) and seated atop the new footplate (white arrow), while the bargeboard's shape was also optimised. The airflow conditioner is detached from the floor (yellow arrow) and left floating around the sidepod's flank.

Australian GP

Australian GP
3/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The C36’s floor features an opposing curved vertical strake ahead of the conventional one run alongside the rear tyre.

Chinese GP

Chinese GP
4/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The team added this cockpit canard (red arrow) in China in order to improve flow toward the sidepod's inlet, bolstering cooling efficiency.

Chinese GP

Chinese GP
5/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The C36’s high-downforce rear wing configuration and shark fin engine cover.

Bahrain GP

Bahrain GP
6/34

Photo by: Sutton Images

An additional cooling hood was opened up by the team in Bahrain in order to cool the power unit and ancillary coolers.

Russian GP

Russian GP
7/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Sauber incorporated a double-element T-wing in Russia, searching for more performance from the device.

Spanish GP

Spanish GP
8/34

Photo by: Sutton Images

Differing front wing configurations prepared and stored in the pitlane for Pascal Wehrlein at the Spanish GP. Note the flap tips curl over in the top wing's case but are cut short in the lower example. Furthermore, in the lower version, the upper flap has a notch cut out where the inner and outer sections of the wing meet.

Monaco GP

Monaco GP
9/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

An aerodynamic overhaul for Monaco included revised sidepod airflow conditioner and new sidepod deflectors (red arrows), extended axehead (green arrow), longitudinal floor slot (yellow arrow), detached double stacked floor scrolls (white arrow) and longer detached floor scroll (purple arrow).

Sauber C36 floor slot

Sauber C36 floor slot
10/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Another angle of the aforementioned floor slot, with its perforation on the floor's edge (for legality purposes) marked with a yellow arrow.

Monaco GP

Monaco GP
11/34

Photo by: Sutton Images

Changes made to the floor area ahead of the rear tyre included the curled winglet (white arrow) and additional slot (red arrow).

Monaco GP

Monaco GP
12/34

Photo by: Sutton Images

Close up of the Ferrari-style feathered winglets used on the upper corner of the C36’s diffuser from Monaco onwards.

Monaco GP

Monaco GP
13/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Flo-viz painted on the rear brake duct winglets and feathered diffuser winglets in order to ascertain that they’re performing as expected.

Canadian GP

Canadian GP
14/34

Photo by: Sutton Images

A close up of the double-stacked floor scrolls added in Monaco on top of the floor's extended axehead

Canadian GP

Canadian GP
15/34

Photo by: Sutton Images

A great shot of the C36’s front wing from behind shows the locale and shape of the vertical strakes that reach back behind the wing to guide the airflow's path.

Canadian GP

Canadian GP
16/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The C36’s front brake assembly with holes cut into the drum in order to release heat generated under braking. Note also the use of polystyrene on the main vertical fence during free practice in order to ascertain how close the fence can be run to the tyre before it causes damage.

Azerbaijan GP

Azerbaijan GP
17/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A close-up of the C36’s front wing in Baku,. Note the square and upwardly twisted flap tips, a trait shared (albeit more aggressively) with Red Bull.

British GP

British GP
18/34

Photo by: Sutton Images

The C36’s front brake assembly with the brake drum removed gives us an insight into how the team uses various airflow channels to manage temperatures and improve the aerodynamic inconsistencies generated by the deformation and rotation of the tyres.

Hungarian GP

Hungarian GP
19/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

As part of a package of parts taken to Hungary, the C36’s bargeboards were updated to include these vertical slots.

Hungarian GP

Hungarian GP
20/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The team also sought to rectify flow conditions around the sidepod's shoulder, carving a chunk of the bodywork away.

Hungary testing

Hungary testing
21/34

Photo by: Sutton Images

In the test that followed the Hungarian GP, Sauber ran this kiel probe array behind the rear tyre of the C36 as it continued to study the impact of the tyre's wake on the diffuser and rear wing.

Belgian GP

Belgian GP
22/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The area ahead of the rear tyre on a Formula 1 car has become an ever more complex affair, with numerous slots and strakes used to guide the airflow around the tyre and mitigate the effects of tyre squirt on the diffuser as the tyre deforms. Note the use of the curled flap just ahead of the rear tyre, a design similar to the one already used by McLaren and assimilated by Sauber in Monaco.

Italian GP

Italian GP
23/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Looking to reduce the amount of drag generated by the car is a primary concern for the Italian GP and so more often than not teams will run very different aero configurations, such as this option tested by Sauber, with just a single upper flap used.

Italian GP

Italian GP
24/34

Photo by: Sutton Images

Singapore GP

Singapore GP
25/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A close up of the C36’s sidepod deflectors and floor. Note the double-stacked floor scrolls on the edge of the extended axehead and the longer scroll further downstream.

Singapore GP

Singapore GP
26/34

Photo by: Sutton Images

The front wings' flap tips are curved down toward the mainplane, an area of development for Sauber, the team aiming to manipulate the Y250 vortex shed from the mainplane and flapped juncture below.

Singapore GP

Singapore GP
27/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A high-downforce set-up for the Singapore street circuit, utilising an extremely high-downforce rear wing, complete with six open-ended endplate louvres to reduce drag, a lower hooped T-wing and an upper hooped and slotted T-wing.

USA GP

USA GP
28/34

Photo by: Sutton Images

Spare wings for Pascal Wehrlein stacked up in the pitlane. Note the squared flap tips, an area of quite intense development for Sauber during 2017.

Sauber C36 engine cover

Sauber C36 engine cover
29/34

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Having run several versions of the shark fin throughout 2017 and struggled to get the kind of gains expected, Sauber began having a more conventional engine cover on standby for the last few races.

Japanese GP

Japanese GP
30/34

Photo by: Sutton Images

An unobstructed view of the C36’s diffuser close up shows the similarities to Ferrari’s design on the upper, outer corners. Both designs feature a cluster of winglets used to create a pressure gradient that’ll work the outer portion of the diffuser harder.

Mexican GP

Mexican GP
31/34

Photo by: Sutton Images

Not new for Mexico but a detail worth looking at is the C36’s wing mirror design, as a blister makes way for a thermal imaging camera - used to monitor the surface temperature of the front tyre.

Abu Dhabi GP

Abu Dhabi GP
32/34

Photo by: Mark Sutton

Marcus Ericsson at the wheel of the C36 while fitted with a kiel probe array ahead of the rear wing. Data is collected from the array as the engineers look to assess the aerodynamic impact of the Halo that will be introduced next season.

Abu Dhabi testing

Abu Dhabi testing
33/34

Photo by: Joe Portlock / LAT Images

A large kiel probe array is mounted between the front wheel and sidepod of the C36 - piloted by new recruit Charles Leclerc - to evaluate how the wake generated by the rotating assembly impacts on the aerodynamics of the car.

Sauber C36 steering wheel

Sauber C36 steering wheel
34/34

Photo by: Sutton Images

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About this article

Series Formula 1
Teams Sauber
Author Matt Somerfield
Article type Special feature