Tech Talk: Williams engine gills and roll-hoop wing

Williams introduced a couple of notable upgrades at the last two races in Germany and Hungary, which we'll take a brief look at in this article.

The top image shows a new slotted shark-fin engine cover aimed at increasing cooling of the power unit. The slots have been seen before in previous seasons, but never as elaborate.

This development is in response to the tighter restrictions surrounding gills, louvres and chimneys. With much of these banned, teams are having to find more inventive ways of cooling the car without increasing drag substantially.

Williams solution creates a tiny amount of drag as the slots draw heat out of the power unit compartment, rather than relying on air passing through the slots to cool the engine.

Another new development - although not new to Formula 1 - is a small roll-hoop winglet which sits just below the T-Cam (see arrows and yellow line). 

This type of wing was popular a few years back, but Ferrari have experimented with it on their F14-T this year and it seems Williams have gone down the same path.

The wing produces a relatively small amount of downforce itself, but that isn't its main aim, at least not directly. The idea is to create small vortices as the air passes over it and then rolls off the tip. These vortces meet the air passing over the rear-wing upper-flap and decrease the chance of air separation at high-speed which would otherwise reduce the amount of downforce the rear-wing creates.