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Beyond driver training: Wirth Research offers teams use of advanced simulator to enhance their 2014 race car engineering

British engineering firm offers performance gains via its accessible, end-to-end package of 3D, full motion simulator, vehicle, tyre and track models, simulation software and simulator engineers.

Bicester, UK – Wirth Research is inviting race teams from all championships to learn more about the value of simulators to race car engineering by presenting its full range of in-house developed simulator tools at the Autosport Engineering show on January 9th and 10th (NEC, Birmingham, stand E520).

“Simulators are widely used by teams at all levels for driver training, but limitations in track, vehicle and tyre model accuracy limit their use in race car engineering and their use in this critical aspect is still relatively untapped outside Formula 1,” says Wirth Research founder, Nick Wirth. “Wirth Research offers easy access to one of the most developed 3D motion simulators in the industry, as well as advanced vehicle and tyre models and the opportunity to use and learn from our experienced simulation engineers.

“Teams in formulas where track testing is limited, from GP3 upwards, can make significant performance gains by arriving at the race weekend with the best possibly prepared car, having tested multiple settings in a variety of track conditions beforehand. This can be achieved without the need to invest in a simulator and in time to make a difference for the 2014 race season.”

Wirth Research is an established pioneer of advanced virtual engineering technologies designed to enable a complete simulated vehicle design, development and testing process. The company is well-known for its work in the collaborative design, development and manufacture of the championship-winning ARX sports cars in partnership with Honda Performance Development Inc., a vehicle that was developed and tested extensively at the company's Oxfordshire (UK) base before the car even turned a wheel.

Wirth Research invested in its first driver-in-the-loop simulator in 2007 and has developed reliable, accurate sports car and formula car vehicle models, which can be adapted to specific customer vehicles and set-ups. Its proprietary Apotheca software provides a link between trackside engineering activities and the simulator, allowing teams to improve efficiency through simplified data management, to protect valuable IP and maximise performance using aerodynamic analysis, suspension geometry, circuit simulation (lap sim) control and comprehensive DIL simulator control.

A reliable and accurate thermal  tyre model  – the holy grail of motorsport simulation

At the heart of Wirth Research’s simulator offer is its MuRiTyre physical tyre model. Able to handle solution speeds in excess of 1 kHz, MuRiTyre is a multi-rib model enabling the behaviour across the width of the tyre to be represented, essential for predicting camber changes and understanding the contact patch behaviour. The tyre model has mechanical and thermal modes to predict tyre performance with load and temperature. It also includes wear and degradation functions to allow the simulation of performance changes over time and use. Viewers update in real-time to demonstrate how changes affect tyre performance.

“A good tyre model is essential if engineers are to understand and predict the effect of changes to the car on tyre performance. The tyre model accounts for at least 50 per cent of a good simulation package,” explains Wirth.

Wirth Research’s experts will also be on hand at the show to discuss the broad range of engineering services and capabilities available, not only to race car designers and manufacturers but other high technology sectors. These include:

  • Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) . Wirth Research is a pioneer of CFD, both for  model creation – where a number of advanced multi-processor workstations with up to 1 TB of RAM use specialised CFD software to create and manipulate complex models consisting of many hundreds of millions of cells and  model solution thanks to an all-new, efficient supercomputer.
  • Low-volume, aerospace-quality  composite manufacturing facility validated by a rigorous and innovative post-manufacture quality control.
  • Augmented reality 3D object viewer. Through Wirth Research’s Emersio app, users can download a range of high quality, animated 3D models and display them located accurately in a real world environment, and customers can have their own models created by Wirth Research for purposes ranging from virtual interactive service manuals to the visualisation of airflow over real-work objects.

Nick Wirth will be interviewed by Henry Hope-Frost on the Autosport Stand, Main Stage, Hall 20, at 12.30 on Thursday 9th January.

About Wirth Research 

Wirth Research is a fast growing innovative engineering company specialising in research, development, design and manufacture for the motor racing industry and other high technology sectors. Founded in 2003, the business pioneers the use of advanced virtual engineering technologies, developed in-house, which enable the use of a complete simulated vehicle design, development and testing process reducing the need for wasteful manufacture of development models and prototypes. These include flow simulation and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) services and a driver-in-the-loop simulator.

Wirth Research has a long-term partnership with Honda Performance Development Inc (HPD) on the design, development and manufacture of the multiple championship-winning ARX sports car programme. In 2013, the cars secured both the LMP1 and LMP2 class titles in the American Le Mans series and won the LMP 1 Privateers award both series scored numerous race wins in both series (including Sebring 12 hour and the Le Mans 24 hour races, in LMP2) and the LMP1 class title in the American series.

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