Hi all, long time reader first time poster. Was just wondering why Mercedes dont use a shark fin. The top 3 teams has one on their car. Also what are the pros and cons of running one. Thanks
The major pro is that it normalises the air flow over the rear wing.
If you imagine the airflow over a car driving around a fast corner you will see that it does not strike the rear wing at a perpendicular angle (because the car is turning). Since rear wings are designed for maximum aerodynamic efficiency when the car is travelling in a straight line, they do not generate as much grip around corners.
A shark fin will redirect air towards the rear wing at a perpendicular angle when the car is turning, thereby creating a situation more similar to when the car travels in a straight line and achieving higher levels of downforce.
In 2010 it’s also useful to have a shark fin to support the F-duct, since it happens to go exactly where you would like to release airflow.
A major con is increased vulnerability to side winds.
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