(Updated Quali) Technical innovation is what makes Formula 1 so different from any other form of racing. The on track action is as much played out by the engineers and aerodynamicists as it is the drivers. We are here to admire, study, and discuss this beauty that exists on the ragged edge of what we think is possible, or at least what we thought was possible.

For more technical intrigue, be sure to check out this year's previous Gran Prix.

This post will be updated as the weekend progresses. Discussions and questions are welcomed and encouraged in the comments section below.

Spanish Gran Prix

Red Bull RB10

RB10 overhead detail.

RB10 overhead detail.

RB10 S-Duct; it takes air from underneath the nose and dumps it on top.

The RB10 sporting new rear wing endplates with normal slots for generating the trailing vortex

RB10 rear end detail.

RB10 engine cover detail; gold for heat reflection.

RB10 rear end detail, flow-vis.


Mercedes W05

W05 overhead detail.

Mercedes still running the higher front nose on the W05 that was debuted in China.

Driver cooling inlet.

W05 front wing detail.

The Mercedes is running a new winglet off the inside of the front wing endplate.

Mercedes front wing/nose detail.

W05 snorkel detail.

Mercedes rear chassis detail.

W05 rear end detail.

W05 coke-bottle zone detail. Note how the bodywork is formed inwards by the floor, but is allowed a cooling exit to stretch backwards above.

Ferrari F14T

F14T overhead detail.

Rear view of the F14T's front wing.

F14T blown wheel nut detail. The ginormous (that's a technical term...) duct on the left funnels air to both the brake itself and straight out for "blowing." Note the split carbon section inside the duct.

F14T bulkhead detail. Note the step in the chassis.

F14T sans engine cover or floor. Note the expanding exhaust outlet.

Ferrari are running a new single pylon rear wing support on the centerline, contrasted to the old version as seen in the previous picture with two supports.

Less obstruction of the air = Less drag (at least in this case).

The new pylon is an inverted Y shape that splits just before the exhaust and connects to the rear crash structure.


Ferrari are also running a Y75 winglet this weekend, one of the last teams to implement one. The Y75 winglet (often called a monkey seat) creates a low pressure underneath the winglet; this low pressure then pulls the exhaust gasses upwards to help connect the upwash of the rear wing and the rear diffuser, effectively creating a single entity of upwash.

F14T rear end detail.

Flow-vis testing Kimi's F14T.

Ferrari rear floor detail.

Lotus E22

It looks like Lotus are continuing to run their nose wing in the center of their twin tusk design, seen being held up by 5 pylons in the center.

E22 sidepod airflow conditioner detail.

Lotus running a Monkey Seat in Catalunya, precariously mounted on their asymmetric rear wing support.

Lotus E22 rear end detail.

Y75 winglet detail. Note it's asymmetric mounting due to the centerline rear wing pylon existing skewed to the left side of the E22.

E22 rear end detail.

Note the horizontal (and curved upwards) slots on the rear wing endplates.

Also note the padding between the exhaust outlet and the centerline rear wing support; this is probably for heat protection of the carbon support.

E22 rear end detail.

Lotus also running their E22 without the Monkey Seat to compare its effects, but are in fact running the Y75 winglet for the race.

McLaren MP4-29

McLaren front wing detail.

McLaren front wing detail.

MP4-29 front wing endplate detail.

Shroomspension (Butterfly Suspension, Wishbone Wings, whatever you want to call it) just hanging out...

McLaren have opened up some bodywork trailing a suspension component; new for this weekend.

MP4-29 rear wing detail. Note how the centerline rear wing pylon curves around the exhaust in a particular way that virtually extends it as part of the Y75 wiglet; waiting for more teams to jump on this bandwagon.

MP4-29 Wishbone Wing detail.

Force India VJM07

Force India front wing detail.

VJM07 bulkhead detail.

Force India with their new pseudo-title sponsor Smirnoff displayed on the sidepods.

VJM07 floor detail.

Note the complexity of the elements preceding the sidepod inlet (where "telcel" is written).

VJM07 rear floor detail.

VJM07 rear end detail.

Sauber C33

Old Sauber front wing (above).

New Sabuer front wing (above).

Note the complex slots of the the C33's old front wing.

C33 cockpit detail. Adrian Sutil is wearing possibly the coolest helmet this weekend.

C33 rear wing detail. Note the exposed DRS actuator.

C33 rear wing detail.

C33 rear end detail.

Sauber tire squirt slots.

C33 diffuser detail.

Note the corner of the diffuser, this is likely to manage the tire wake's effect on the efficiency of the rear diffuser.

Toro Rosso STR9

STR9 rear wing detail.

Williams FW36

FW36 front wing detail.

Marussia MR03

Note the inlet on the shark fin of the MR03.

Marussia rear wing detail.

Caterham CT05

Caterham sidepod airflow conditioner detail.

CT05 sans engine cover or floor.

Wait... what's that on the Caterham? Let's move in closer...

A second winglet just below the exhaust?! Is that legal?

Also note the winglets preceding the bodywork that connects the rear crash structure to the diffuser; for most teams this is just a single sheet of carbon (the most rearwards on the Caterham).

Something innovative from the Caterham outfit; didn't see that coming...

[Select images from Auto Motor und Sport]