There’s an old saying that racing improves the breed, and Formula E is helping to improve the next generation of electric vehicles. This should mean a better quality of air – and thus life – for all of us.

A Brief Introduction -

  1. Formula E, officially the FIA Formula E Championshiprepresents the world's first fully-electric racing series. Foreshadowing the motor industry’s development in the coming decades, it provides a framework for R&D while accelerating interest in electric vehicles and promoting sustainability. 
  2. The series was conceived in 2012, and the inaugural championship started in Beijing on 13 September 2014. The series is sanctioned by the FIAAlejandro Agag is the current CEO of  Formula E.
  3. Operating as an 'open championship', the series gives manufacturers the opportunity to showcase their energy technology in a competitive environment by designing cars to technical specifications set out by the FIA. Formula E fully complies with the same FIA standards as used in Formula 1
  4. It centers around three core values - energy, environment, and entertainment - and represents a fusion of engineering, technology, sport, science, design, music, and entertainment.

Why we need Formula E -

  1. Growth in urban population, rising mobility of people and goods, and consumer trends are changing the environment. As global megatrends are creating difficulties for governments, businesses, and individuals to create integrated solutions, the demand for platforms where different actors can exchange ideas to sustainability challenges, is increasing.
  2. Formula E acts as a catalyzer for technology innovation, it brings together major global corporations that recognize the benefits of developing cross-industry collaborations and of jointly building innovative and sustainable solutions. Formula E is a perfect place to test custom batteries, and there’s a good chance a breakthrough energy-storage device will debut here. 
  3. Using cutting-edge technology, the Formula E aims to push the boundaries of what is currently achievable in electric motorsport. While striking a balance between cost-effectiveness and sustainability, it will also rise to the challenge of racing solely on street circuits. Formula E cars have a potential problem not found in Formula One.
  4. Formula E drivers have their fuel when they start the race, but they can keep topping it up as they can regenerate, Drivers are looking at the total amount of fuel, that is, the "charge", how much of it is left and accordingly how hard do they have to push that energy, to use that fuel out of the corners or on the straights, and how much braking they should do, how much speed should they carry through the corners. They have to manage regeneration off of the braking, if they brake very harshly, that impedes the ability of the system to regenerate, as braking less sharply helps to conserve energy. A challenge for the teams is how to make the most of the available charge, but also how to add more to the charge.
  5. In a lithium-ion battery, a very publicized problem is them getting too hot during their operation. It’s an exothermic reaction: so they just keep getting hotter, thereby becoming potentially unstable. Most battery cells need to be <65C, and for stability and performance, the battery temperature needs to be between 35C to 40C.
  6. While a Formula E car is not as fast as a Formula One car, it is nevertheless a serious racing machine built by some of the world’s top racing experts.
  7. The Founding Partners of Formula E decided that it would be a platform to boost sustainable innovations, a gateway to the cities of tomorrow and alternative transport. After the very first Formula E season in 2014-2015, this dream is already becoming a reality – and the best is yet to come.

 Formula E Racing Rules/Regulations/Conventions -

  1. Each Race is a one-day event, creating a unique and exciting experience designed to appeal to a new generation of motorsport fans. 
  2. The Formula E championship is currently contested by ten teams with two drivers each. Racing generally takes place on temporary city-center street circuits which are approximately 2 to 3.4 km (1.2 to 2.1 mi) long. 
  3. Each driver has two cars at their disposal as the races last 50 minutes, but the car batteries remain charged for just over 20 minutes. This means that drivers need to change cars half way through the race in a mandatory pit stop.
  4. The race day begins with two practice sessions in the morning, an opening 45-minute session followed by a further 30-minute session. 
  5. The qualifying session normally takes place at noon and lasts one hour. 200 kW of energy is available in only 1 of the 2 cars throughout the qualifying session.  In race mode, the maximum power is restricted to 170 kW.
  6. The aerodynamics are fixed, so settings do not need to be changed from race to race in the 10-race championship. But suspension settings can be adjusted and cars differ according to their different drivetrains (powertrains).
  7. Tire changes, unless caused by a puncture or damage, are not permitted during this pit stop.

The Track -

Point Scoring - Points are awarded to the top ten drivers using the standard FIA system. Three points are also awarded to the driver securing the pole position, while the driver setting the fastest lap receives an additional point. The championship consists of both a drivers’ and teams’ championship. A driver's end of season total is made up a driver's best results. A team's total score is obtained by adding points of both of its drivers throughout the season.
Fanboost - For each race, fans can vote for their favorite driver via various social media channels to give them an extra power boost. Voting starts about two weeks prior to an event and is also open during the opening six minutes of the race. The three winning Fanboost drivers each receive an extra 100 kJ of energy to be used in a power window ranging between 180kW & 200kW.

References -

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