Heating Elements for the F1 Industry
We can manufacture heaters and temperature sensors for equipment used to form the component parts of Formula One Cars. Please call us on 0121 772 0033 for further information.
In one area – materials - F1 brakes are massively more advanced than road-car systems. All the cars on the grid now use carbon fibre composite brake discs which save weight and are able to operate at higher temperatures (heating elements) than steel discs. A typical Formula One brake disc weighs about 1.5 kg. These are gripped by special compound brake pads and are capable of running at vast temperatures - anything up to 750 degrees Celsius.
These "carbon-carbon" brakes (so-called because one type of carbon is thermally bonded with another) are essential to the overall handling and efficiency of the F1 cars. The process used to produce the discs for CCB is however complex and time-consuming — and therefore costly. First, carbon fibres are blended with a resin containing carbon and silicon. The compound is then pressed into a mold to create the basic disc shape, including its internal cooling vents. Next, using carefully controlled heat (up to 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit), the resin in the disc is converted to silicon carbide, a material nearly as hard as diamond. This is the "ceramic" in "carbon ceramic." Finally, the centre section of the brake rotor — typically made of stainless steel or aluminium — is pinned or bolted to the ceramic composite disc.
The single greatest benefit of CCBs, is their resistance to brake fade. With repeated use (especially at high speeds) brake temperatures can rise dramatically, causing performance to drop off. This is a common occurrence during racing, but can also occur if you ride your brakes down a long mountain grade rather than downshifting to take advantage of engine braking. In either case, the consequences can be disastrous. Unlike conventional brakes, CCBs are designed for outstanding performance at very high temperatures. Unless you're spending your weekends at the track, however, you probably won't be pushing your über brakes hard enough to find out just how great they are. And if you do manage to find out on the road, no need to tell your friends — they'll know all about it from the evening news!