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BMW and self-isolation with three-dimensional Laverty scans


BMW and self-isolation with three-dimensional Laverty scans

After a long hiatus caused by the coronavirus, the World Superbike Championship is about to reopen in the Spanish city of Jerez. In the meantime, the world is preparing for this momentous event, BMW decided to tell how they self-isolate.

BMW S 1000 RR for World Superbike

While racing was not possible, development of the S 1000 RR for the World Superbike continued, especially in the area of ​​aerodynamics. Getting through the wind with maximum efficiency is essential when it comes to high-end racing, and while it’s easy to put the BMW S 1000 RR in a wind tunnel, blowing a single bike in it, without a rider, is almost pointless. But what if riders stay at home in their home countries and isolate themselves, unable to travel to Munich due to restrictions?

Sure thing: build their 3D models. It so happened that Eugene Laverty ended up at BMW headquarters in Germany shortly before the start of self-isolation. In general, it is not surprising, because the riders sometimes visit factories, meet with the team of engineers and participate in the modifications of motorcycles. This time, BMW also took the opportunity to make detailed three-dimensional scans of Laverty – in full overalls and in you know what position.

The resolution of the scans is such that you can see in detail every finger on the glove, every line of the helmet, every line of the overalls and every fold that affects aerodynamics, drag and all kinds of swirls. Consider – and most importantly, calculate:

Based on the 3D scan data, we created a plastic model consisting of two halves. It took about two weeks, but now our 3D Eugene is ready to be purged, ”said Mark Bongers, BMW Motorrad Motorsport Director.

Given the pandemic that followed soon after and its devastating consequences, this was a very good decision.


BMW and self-isolation with three-dimensional Laverty scansBMW and self-isolation with three-dimensional Laverty scans

The plastic Laverty has already been used more than fifty times, but it is completely unflappable and calmly incubates any experimentation in the BMW S1000RR saddle. The BMW wind tunnel is equipped with a 2600-horsepower electric motor capable of simulating speeds of up to 260 km / h.

By using the 3D model, we are working on the aerodynamics of the RR more efficiently, ”explained Bongers. -A real rider would have to go to us, and the plastic one is always ready for any tests in the tube. Thanks to it, we can evaluate and implement changes much faster.

As for the 3D model itself, Eugene joked about him: “He’s only a little paler than my Irish face.”

Although Jerez is not the fastest track, the aerodynamic modifications for the motorcycles of Laverty and his teammate Tom Sykes (which did not get to the first scan, but was subsequently also embodied in plastic). Of course, other teams also worked on their vehicles during self-isolation, so you shouldn’t expect significant benefits, but still the ability to scan a rider and make an exact aerodynamic copy of him is a great help for designers and an excellent illustration of how creative teams are able to work even in difficult conditions.

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