Tatuus iMagazine - page 9

Eugenio Bardoscia, who is 39 years old and has
been with Tatuus since 2004, is an aerospace
engineer from the aerospace engineering
department in Pisa. «Computational fluid
dynamics (Cfd) is still part of the syllabus in Pisa
– explains Bardoscia – and it was there that I first
encountered these techniques, although the first
applications were in other sectors and had little to
do with motorsports».
Tell us a little about your professional career
Towards the end of the 1990s I was working in
highly specialised sectors in Pisa. These included
a series of collaborations between Ferrari and my
department in order to evaluate Cfd as a tool
used in conjunction with wind tunnel. This type
of numerical investigation was then extended to
other highly competitive sectors, for example the
boats used in the America’s Cup. For the first few
years of the new millenniummost of the
publications dealing with Cfd focused principally
on motorsports or the automotive sector. But
now this tool has become so widespread that
motorsports has almost been relegated to a niche,
due to the increasing use of simulation for
practically every aspect».
What is Cfd and what is it currently used for?
«The evolution of the software permits us to
combine fluid and structural simulations;
coupling these results together in order to obtain
values that can assist during the design decision‐
making process, before the first prototype has
even been built, represents a great advantage. We
now talk in terms of simulation‐driven design.
The various design phases must be integrated and
How do you make use of this winning
compromise at Tatuus?
«I’mmainly involved with fluid dynamic
simulations. Since we’ve been using this tool at
Tatuus, any of our cars has gone through this
initial study phase, which is also used extensively
when designing the prototypes. It’s the starting
point for the development and for the subsequent
stage when we move up to 1:1 scale modelling.
You could define it as the first leg for the Cfd
studies, since in order to arrive at a definitive
version of those lines it is necessary to evaluate
innumerable other versions, some of which are
entirely different; a selection process that
gradually permits us to "freeze” the various parts
of the car. Naturally this should not be seen as a
final result, rather as the outcome of the initial
study period, and we continue to refine and
tweak the lines as the process moves forward».
How important are these technologies for a
company like Tatuus?
«In some ways it makes more sense for a small
company such as Tatuus to use them. We work
on limited budgets, so carrying out a large
number of preliminary simulations helps to limit
the number of errors further on down the line.
Preparing a model for the wind tunnel is a costly
business, therefore the more simulations you
perform beforehand the less time you lose later.
Another aspect is the amount of resources that
this tool requires. The cost of hardware has risen
dramatically over the last 10 years, therefore it is
now necessary to consider reinvesting in other
ways by increasing the number of software
licences, for example, since their cost remains
Do you think it will ever be possible to produce a
car that has been designed entirely in the lab?
«It’s already been tried in Formula 1, the old
Virgin model was reputedly designed exclusively
in the laboratory. But it will always be a
compromise: once the model makes it to the
wind tunnel, every measurement has its own
inherent error and uncertainty. They can be
checked against each other, but they must be
tested on the track too. In the past the wind
tunnel existed without the benefit of Cfd, but
now, thanks to the assistance provided by the
latter, it’s possible to reduce the time we spend in
the tunnel».
What project are you working on at the moment?
«The prototype: a new car which represents a
radical departure for the company, although
we’re investing all our experience from Formula
racing in the project. We started from a blank
page, and day after day we came up against new
problems that had to be solved. Even in
perspective it throws up some very interesting
new ideas.
It’s like turning over a new page and starting out
all over again, which is always a stimulating
experience. Also, thanks to the flexibility of the
tools, we have been able to respond to a wide
range of differing requests, and develop on all
fronts. It’s possible to simulate and refine
anything that moves around the surface of the
vehicle, whether it’s air or a fluid».
With this in mind, do you think that Tatuus
could take on projects outside the motorsports
sector in the future?
«Everything points towards a future where there
is more common ground between the various
sectors. Historically, the company built racing
cars because it was founded by people who had a
passion for racing and the skill to turn it into a
business. Therefore there’s no reason why the
company might not expand into other areas,
either for personal or business reasons. And since
we’re talking about fluids in movement, applying
the same principles to either aeroplanes or boats
would be a very interesting option».
Eugenio Bardoscia
“The integration between Cfd and the wind
tunnel has changed the way we design”
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