LCS attended the Supercomputing Conference in November 2016 to showcase the aerodynamic development of the Elemental RP1 car using CFD methods and SGI supercomputers at the SGI booth. A stunning white RP1 was present as the centrepiece and attracted considerable attention throughout the week. Alex from Elemental was on hand to deal with the deluge of interest and excitement; Elemental are planning to enter the US market at the end of 2017 and this was the first chance for the car to be seen in the US.
Pride of place, however, was the demonstration of the aerodynamic downforce on the car. LCS-FAST used extensive CFD throughout the RP1 development including the world's first 5th order accurate transient simulation of a whole automotive car. This was an ideal opportunity for LCS to demonstrate our passion for taking innovative technology from cutting edge University research, and using it to develop car performance. In this case the high order simulation was used to develop a deep understanding of the flow features and their stability to understand and unlock the aerodynamic potential of the car.
Of course, delivering new CFD technology is one thing; but more important is to use that technology to develop improved performance. At the SGI Innovation Breakfast, LCS and Elemental announced a major new aerodynamic upgrade to the RP1 with a long tail diffuser, new forward floor, a F1-inspired two element rear wing as well as new roll hoop and race screen. This upgrade now delivers over 1,000 kg of downforce at 150 mph (up from 400 kg on the baseline car) and is being tuned and developed with additional chassis and powertrain improvements to deliver the ultimate track experience. The aerodynamics package is being refined and optimised to ensure well-behaved aerodynamics thoughout the cornering experience to provide a great driver experience and high confidence levels for the very best laptimes. More details can be found on the Elemental website.