Mercedes recently announced that it is planning to use FORMULA 1 engine technology in the future production model of its Mercedes-AMG supercars.
To be precise, Mercedes aims to use modified MGU-H (Motor Generator Unit-Heat) in a road car to boost the engine’s response to the throttle and its output capacity.
Turbocharged engines were first introduced in F1 Cars in order to boost the power output capacity of the V6 1,6 litre FORMULA 1 engine in 2014.
The MGU-H is one of the elements of the Power Unit along with the FORMULA 1 Engine, Turbocharger (TC), MGU-K (Kinetic), the Energy Store (ES) and the Control Electronics (CE)
The turbocharger supplies compressed air to the combustion chamber, optimising fuel efficiency and helping the engine to generate higher output.
What is MGU-H in a FORMULA 1 Power Unit?
An MGU-H (Motor Generator Unit-Heat) is an element that can recover energy from the hot gasses from the FORMULA 1 engine exhaust.
These gases turn a turbine which produces electrical energy thereby salvaging energy which would have otherwise gone to waste.
The electrical energy is supplied to a motor which, attached to a compressor, compresses fresh air that is supplied at the required density to the turbocharger.
The turbocharger injects the optimal quantity of fresh air at the right density to the engine to allow greater output force from the combustion of the fuel/air mixture.
How much air is to be supplied at what speeds of the car is determined by the commands of the driver of the car with the throttle, gears and the clutch.
The quantity and density of air are controlled by the CE, which means that the combustion chamber of the engine gets the optimum quantity of air for the optimum fuel input.
This mixture of fuel and compressed air, when ignited by a spark plug, gives an additional downward force to the piston which is the production stroke.
The use of an MGU-H not only enhances the output of the FORMULA 1 engine, but it also optimises fuel use as most of the fuel used in combustion.
The additional energy generated by the MGU-H is stored in the ES which is a rechargeable battery, and which the driver claims back when he presses down on his throttle to accelerate.
The MGU-K also reclaims energy when the car brakes or decelerates and this power is also stored in the ES.
How does Mercedes plan to use the MGU-H in Road Cars?
The MGU-H backed turbocharger is the most complex part of the FORMULA 1 Power Unit.
The MGU-H and turbocharger technology was introduced in 2014 in order to reduce the size of the FORMULA 1 engine and to optimise the use of fuel.
Mercedes has won both the World Drivers’ and the World Manufacturers’ Championships every year since 2014 and easily at that.
They are well on their way to winning the 2020 World Championships also, emphasising the fact that they have mastered the FORMULA 1 engine and Power Unit technology.
Mercedes says that an innovative version of an MGU-H in their future Mercedes-AMG supercars will be called the “electric exhaust gas turbocharger”.
They claim that they have developed the new turbocharger in collaboration with the famed turbocharger manufacturer Garrett Motion.
The design includes an electric motor coupled to the turbine on one side and a compressor compressing fresh air on the other.
The compressor will be primed by the motor before the hot gasses enter the exhaust to turn the turbine.
This will mean that road car drivers will have the full turbo power available to them at take-off and when accelerating.
This will help the engine of these cars to generate more power while increasing the fuel efficiency of the car.
A better response to the throttle by the engine, will substantially improve the overall driving experience of the driver.
Mercedes-AMG CEO Tobias Moers confides that “We have clearly defined our goals for an electrified future”.
“In order to achieve them, we are relying on discrete and innovative components as well as assemblies”.
He said that “With this move, we are strategically supplementing our modular technology and tailoring it to our performance requirements”.
This decision by Mercedes-AMG shows why FORMULA 1 is the best testing laboratory to test the advanced technology to boost the power output of auto engines.
This is one way that FORMULA 1 can pay back their fans for their devotion: give them the power to experience what they enjoyed watching on the FORMULA 1 race track.
More importantly, FORMULA 1 engine technology can reduce the carbon footprints of autos and may one day switch to all electrical vehicles.