In addition to designing energy-efficient attachment cooling solutions for the cars themselves, Ebm-Papst, as an official team partner of Merceds AMG Petronas racing team, has also developed a special cooling and heat extraction solution for the team’s garage.
This new heat extraction and cooling system will be brought into play this weekend for the first time at the Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia where working temperatures inside the garage can exceed 40°C and humidity levels often rise above 90%.
The garage provides space for the team’s two race cars, mechanics, aerodynamic, electronics and IT specialists as well as car parts and tyre storage areas. It’s a large area that is completely open at the front, allowing heat to come in.
The bespoke system consists of a specially developed water cooling system which cools the critical working areas of the garage down to room temperature. With dimensions measuring 1m by 2m by 90cm and a modular air distribution system, the unit can also be configured for use across the range of dimensions and layouts seen in different Formula One garages around the world.
Although the physical exertion behind the wheel during a typical Malaysian Grand Prix will see a driver’s heart rate reach as high as 170 bpm, see him or her burn up to 1,500 calories and will result in a loss of around three litres of body fluid.
However, the worst effects of the humidity from a driver’s perspective can actually be seen once they return to the garage. At this point they no longer have airflow rushing around them and there is suddenly a huge amount of heat rejection and perspiration to endure. An efficient and effective cooling system in the garage therefore critically improves the working conditions for both the team and its two drivers, Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg.
Gareth Jones, managing director of Ebm-Papst Automotive & Drives (UK) Ltd, who was responsible for developing the garage cooling system, commented: “During the preparations for the garage cooling I always joked with the team that it is our mission to make Mercedes AMG Petronas officially the coolest team in Formula One.”
Ebm-Papst became an Official Team Partner last year. This followed changes to F1 rules for the 2014 season, allowing the incorporation of greater energy efficiency and hybrid technology. The German fan company has since developed energy-efficient attachment cooling solutions for the team’s F1 W05 Hybrid and F1 W06 Hybrid cars. Fans in the sidepods and roll hoop openings of the car cool the temperature-sensitive components of the vehicles down to the optimum operating temperature.