Brembo Unveils Formula 1 Use Of Its Braking Systems At The 2017 Russian GP

By: Brembo

Brembo Unveils Formula 1 Use Of Its Braking Systems At The 2017 Russian GP  An in-depth look at the braking systems on the Formula 1 single-seaters at Sochi Autodrom

DETROIT, (April 28, 2017) - The Sochi Autodrom will host the fourth race of the 2017 Formula 1 World Championship, April 28 - 30. In 2010, the contract to host the Russian GP in Sochi was signed and four years later, the circuit was completed. Built within the Olympic Park used for the Winter Olympic Games in 2014, the circuit stands out for the 710-yard curve at Turn 3, the longest curve in all of the World Championship.

Designed by architect Hermann Tilke, the track is one of the longest in the World Championship (6,395 yards) and makes use of 1.05 miles of street normally open to traffic. That is why the single-seater performance improves little by little as more rubber is laid down on the tarmac. Increased mechanical grip will be a highlight this year compared to last because of the larger dimensions of the tires being used in the 2017 season.

The added brake torque inspired Brembo technicians to redesign every single element in the braking system. They started with the brake calipers, which were adapted to the thicker discs that went from 28 mm to 32 mm, then tackled the Brake-By-Wire components.

According to Brembo technicians, who classified the 20 tracks in the World Championship on a scale of 1 to 10, the Sochi Autodrom falls into the category of highly demanding circuits for the brakes. The Sochi track earned an eight on the difficulty index, the same score given to the Monza, Melbourne, Baku and Spielberg circuits.

The demand on the brakes during the GP

The time spent braking every lap is 14.5 seconds, which is equivalent to 16% of the overall race time and in line with a good part of the other races. The 4.6 G peak average deceleration per lap is very high on the other hand, and is due to the 10 braking sections that each have a deceleration reaching at least 4 G. This value is significantly higher than it was last year as a result of the increased brake torque mentioned previously.

Therefore, even the energy dissipated when braking has increased: this year, each single-seater will probably hit 208 kWh, the same amount consumed daily by 11 Russian residents. However, this year the Brembo discs on the cars have 200 ventilation holes more than in 2016, leading to significant benefits in terms of cooling.

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    From the starting line to the checkered flag, each driver uses his brakes at least 530 times, exerting a total force on the pedal of approximately 82.5 tons. In other words, each driver applies a load of almost 1,990 lbs. per minute, which is four times the clean and jerk world record for weightlifting athletes in the weight classes up to 105 kg.

    The most demanding braking sections

    Of the 10 braking points on the Sochi Autodrom track, four are classified as demanding on the brakes and the other six are of medium difficulty. For all ten however, the load on the pedal is never below 308 lbs.

    The most difficult braking section is at Turn 2: the single-seaters approach the turn going 195 mph and brake for 1.72 seconds to enter the corner at about 80 mph. They manage to do so in just 173-feet, or less than one third the length of a K-139 Belgorod submarine. The drivers are required to apply a remarkable amount of force: a load of 359 lbs. on the brake pedal and 4.8 G in deceleration, which equates to the value usually experienced by Russian astronauts during their return to Earth.

    Almost just as challenging on the Brembo brakes are turns 13 and 5, which are characterized by 4.7 G and 4.8 G in deceleration respectively. The single-seaters generate a peak braking force of over 2200 kW at both corners.

    Brembo performance

    Of the three Russian GP races contested, single-seaters equipped with Brembo calipers took the pole position each time and finished the races in first and second place. In 2016, cars with Brembo calipers filled the entire podium. Ferrari has yet to win a race in Russia however.

    About Brembo SpA

    Brembo SpA is the world leader and acknowledged innovator of disc brake technology for automotive vehicles. Brembo supplies high performance brake systems for the most important manufacturers of cars, commercial vehicles and motorbikes worldwide,as well as clutches and other components for racing. Brembo is also a leader in the racing sector and has won more than 300 championships. Today the company operates in 15 countries on 3 continents, with 24 production and business sites, and a pool of about 9.000 employees, about 10% of whom are engineers and product specialists active in the R&D. 2016 turnover is € 2,279.1 million (12.31.2016). Brembo is the owner of the Brembo, Breco, AP, Bybre, and Marchesini brands and operates through the AP Racing brand.

  • Photo credit: Brembo
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