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What are Wind Tunnels?

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Wind Tunnels are used in motorsport to test certain car designs and specifications
to find out if they work and how well they work in as near to a real situation as possible.

A smaller model of the teams real car is made and placed inside the tunnel to see how well it withstands the testing conditions.

The wind tunnel is a tube, round or rectangular.
It is equipped with a fan so that air can be driven through the tube at a constant and controlled speed. Once the model is in place a stream of air is sent through the tunnel Downforce and drag results at particular speeds can then be measured .

model of a wind tunnel at cranfield university

Wind tunnels are often designed so that the air flowing past the model is reused. These tunnels, 're-circulating tunnels' save power as the air does not have to be accelerated to working speed continuously, but are more complex and expensive to build.

© Cranfield University