More than solely the drivetrain: other in-house developments for the BMW iFE.18


The BMW iFE.18, with which the BMW i Andretti Motorsport team won the opening round of your season’s ABB FIA Formula E Championship, includes many features developed internally at BMW, along with the standard parts stipulated inside the regulations.

The most apparent could well be the Racing eDrive01 drivetrain. However, the engineers at BMW i Motorsport had various other areas, to apply their know-how. Here’s a breakdown of BMW’s in-house developments to the BMW iFE.18:

Rear-end structure and rear suspension

As along with the drivetrain, the rear-end plus the rear suspension are definitely the two places where the BMW i Motorsport engineers had the most leeway with regard to their own developments. Although chassis, battery and tyres are standard Formula E parts, in order to keep a lid on costs, the engineers at BMW i Motorsport designed the trunk axle, including suspension and shocks, themselves and integrated the drivetrain within the rear the main car. As each drivetrain does have it’s individual properties, each team is mainly responsible for integrating the drivetrain in the rear-end structure from the cars and locating a cooling set-up that meets these properties.

The team can configure typical set-up parameters on the chassis of the BMW iFE.18, which include spring rates, anti-roll bars, ride height, toe and camber. The chassis set-up plays a major role in achieving maximum mechanical grip on the tarmac surfaces of the street circuits, some of which are incredibly uneven when compared with permanent racetracks. It is also critical that each chassis additionally, the rear-end structure are robust enough to handle driving over aggressive kerbs and light touching the barriers in the pub circuits utilised in Formula E.

The so-called Generative Design process was developed when developing various components. This gave the chance to directly derive the appearance of the constituents through the load cases, while using help of computers, to add in the event and expertise of your BMW i Motorsport engineers, after which to provide the parts from aluminium utilizing a 3D printing procedure. Regarding other components, this combination of know-how and technology has made it viable to very efficiently integrate various functions, like during the cooling circuits, in only a few parts.

The several years of experience possessed by BMW i Motorsport engineers inside development and output of fibre-reinforced plastics really got into unique from the style of the rear-end structure. The dwelling is not merely very light, but a variety of functions are also integrated into the structure. The crash load requirements within the sporting authorities were also met completely and with no problems along at the first attempt.

The topic of sustainability also plays a primary role from the progression of the BMW iFE.18. BMW i Motorsport engineers are working very closely using colleagues being produced to increasingly integrate renewable resources in suitable components.

Brake-by-wire system

Another major in-house BMW development is the electronic, brake-by-wire foot brake. The roll-out of this method represents a major technological step for Formula E and, labels on homeopathic products, takes it for the same level as Formula 1 along with the LMP1 category within the FIA World Endurance Championship. Since Season 5, brake-by-wire controls the marriage between mechanical braking force, when the driver pushes the brake pedal, and the braking effect generated by energy harvested during deceleration and braking. Should the motor recovers energy on the braking process over the race, it basically functions as an additional brake within the rear axle of your car. Previously, drivers wanted to manually adjust the brake balance to balance an added braking effect. The electronics about the BMW iFE.18 now perform this balance.

The integration of your brake-by-wire system and, certainly, software program logic produced by the BMW i Motorsport engineers, significantly boosts the regeneration potential C so much energy that is often fed back into the battery when braking. Finding the right possible configuration with this software program is fundamental to manage to contest the entire race distance with maximum power on the battery, whilst adhering to the volume of energy permitted by the regulations. In practice, overcoming this disorder calls for the engineers to get the very best relationship between speed along with management. Their task is to calculate a race time optimisation while using the limited quantity of energy. You will need to keep sight with all the different race action C to read through the information and also to anticipate what might be coming C to then decide, plus the driver, during which phases on the race marketing and advertising to save energy then when to attack, for making up positions or open a niche towards cars behind.

An presentation of standard parts and in-house BMW developments for the BMW iFE.18

Standard parts:

– Chassis (Spark Racing Technology)
– Battery (McLaren)
– Tyres (Michelin)

BMW developments

– Racing eDrive01 drivetrain
– Gearbox, differential and drive shafts
– Drivetrain cooling
– Rear-end structure
– Rear suspension
– Springs, shocks und anti-roll bars
– 12V electrics / electronics
– Brake-by-wire system
– Software (on-car / off-car)
– Oil development (along with Shell)

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