The FIA has confirmed the modifications that it will introduce from the 2022 Belgian GP to reduce the effect of porpoising with some changes to the technical regulations that will have a direct impact in 2022 and also in 2023 after receiving the approval of the World Motor Sport Council .
The governing body of motorsports indicated that changes are approved with the aim of addressing safety issues, especially due to the porpoising effect, a consequence of the technical regulations introduced in 2022 with the return of ground effect, but also in the anti-roll rings of the single-seaters after of the incident of the Alfa Romeo of the Chinese Guanyu Zhou.
FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem had this to say: “Safety is the highest priority for the FIA, and we have devoted a lot of time and resources to analyzing and resolving the problem of porpoising.”
The director of the international organization admitted that there was a kind of resistance from some teams, but in the end it was clear that the FIA had to act. “I have personally discussed this matter with all the teams and drivers, and while there are of course different opinions due to different competitive positions, it is very clear that the FIA has a duty to act and ensure that drivers are not put at undue risk of suffering. injuries as a consequence of this phenomenon”.
To do this, the FIA confirmed that “the phenomenon will be measured and they will expect the teams to operate below a certain threshold for their car to be considered safe.”
For this same season, changes in the flexibility of the floor will be sought to redefine the rigidity requirements of the floor and the skids around the holes that measure its thickness.
The biggest modifications arrive for 2023 as follows:
- The edges of the floor will be raised 15mm.
- The height of the diffuser throat will be raised, taking care to avoid any impact on the designs of the mechanical components of the equipment.
- The stiffness of the diffuser edge will be increased.
- The installation of an additional sensor will be ordered to control the phenomenon more effectively.
The roll-over arch
Zhou Guanyu, Alfa Romeo C42 choca en la salida
Photo by: JEP / Motorsport Images
After the accident at the 2022 British Grand Prix, where Zhou traveled several meters with the car upside down, the FIA analyzed the incident to improve the vehicle’s operation and rescue systems, including the roll-over arch.
The analysis of the accident concluded that the “roll bar was stuck in the asphalt, which caused a large horizontal force that caused it to break”.
For this reason, the new way of homologating said piece will be with round designs that “will reduce the possibility of said element sticking to the ground during an accident”.
Along with this, the following modifications have also been approved:
- A change to guarantee a minimum height for the application point in the homologation test.
- Creation of a new physical approval test in which the load pushes the roll bar forward.
- Definition of new tests to perform by calculation.
As a medium-term goal, by 2024, it is intended to carry out a major review of the roll bar tests to ensure that the cars of the future withstand much more severe loads.