McLaren-Honda have come to Malaysia with a new aero package on their MP4-30, which remarkably included an S-duct on the nose. Thursday during the pit-stop practice on an interesting aero upgrade was observed, the anterior part of the chrome arrow.
Jenson Button finish in Australia gave McLaren and Honda a huge boost as they try to find a way forward. The car had run only 12 successive laps before Australian GP, where Button finished 11th after completing 56 laps.
Understanding the S-Duct:
Basically, the duct is an open space on the car, which is strategically situated right at the foundation of the nose with an opening created before the face of the bulkhead. This in turn allows favorable transit of air (or blocked air) from underneath the nose and bottom section of the car.
The air ultimately makes its way out of area in the question with the help of another gap right at the top of the car. The strategy aims and aids to stop the immobile course (of air) from creating at the paramount of the chassis.
The reason to call it the S-Duct:
This is of course because of the shape of the pipe used for moving the air in the motion, which is favorable for the team. The “S” form of the tube basically begins at the bottom of the nose and goes out from the top side of the chassis.
The benefit of using the S-Duct
As stated above it aids the car by helping the blocked air under the nose (or also known as the thick boundary layer) to negotiate a better and a linear/straighter guide out of the car. This is basically beneficial as it make the air flow much faster, and in turn convenient, inside the nose/car which results in creation of higher points of down-force. Also, even though marginal it may be, the spilt-gap in the nose section can also amount to a slight weight loss in the chassis.
Interestingly a year before Red Bull had placed the duct on the lower side of the nose, but this time it has expanded to the dual extremity of the bottom. And thus the intakes of the duct can now be seen right below the camera attachment pods. (Ryan Francis)