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Smooth, heat-resistant ceramic minimises turbulence in 2011 ‘blown’ exhaust diffuser applications
Propel TechnologyJan 17, 2011 12:48 GMT
OXFORD –Zircotec is to offer a new derivative of its heat resistant ceramic composite coating for engineers looking to maintain the higher airflow speeds of exhaust gases that deliver improved downforce. The latest version of the firm’s ThermoHold™ for Composites coating has a smooth surface finish to minimise exhaust gas air flow disruption, enabling F1 teams to optimise their “blown” exhaust design features and recover downforce lost with the banning of double diffusers in 2011. Use of Zircotec’s standard heat resistant thermal barriers by F1 teams during 2010 increased to prevent composite substrates delaminating and to reduce surface temperatures by up to 125°C.
“Our first coating applications in this area enabled teams to blow hot exhaust gases through the diffuser and floor safely,” explains Zircotec’s sales director Peter Whyman. “Engineers were able to introduce the feature to cars that hadn’t been conceived to run blown exhausts. With reliability proven, teams are now seeking performance gains by maintaining high gas speeds. Our ability to finely adjust the surface finish means we can offer a smooth finish with no impact on thermal protection.”
The use of Zircotec’s heat resistant coating has also allowed teams to extend the life of composite components in other applications such as brake ‘cake tin’ or covers and ducting. “Our coating can reduce costs for the teams as the part service life is extended considerably,” adds Whyman.
The smooth coating retains the proprietary bond coat and zirconia-based ceramic of the award-winning ThermoHold for Composite coating with Zircotec changing the spray and finishing processes to achieve the new texture. In line with F1 requirements, an express service with 24 hour turnaround is available from Zircotec’s Abingdon facility for the new finish.