Originally Posted by skiffle
The other aspect, which is somewhat forgotten, is that the reduction in air density has a noticeable impact on the aerodynamics of the car too. The reduction in air density reduces downforce and drag too - I wonder whether the rF2 physics engine could take that into account too, since that in turn would have a noticeable impact on the handling of the cars?
To put that into perspective...
At 200 kph, 15ºC, altitude=0 m, a rear wing with the following parameters:
Camber = -2.0 % chord ,
Chord = 0.701 m ,
Span = 1.366 m ,
Surface Area = 0.958 sq m ,
Angle of attack = -5.0 degrees ,
Air Density = 1.224kg/cu m
Pressure = 101.261kPa,
Temperature = 15C,
Airspeed = 200 km/hr ,
results in the following:
Lift = -1336 Newtons
Drag = 236 Newtons
The very same wing at altitude=1500 m,
Lift = -1154 Newtons
Drag = 204 Newtons
Increasing the altitude to 3000 m,
Altitude = 3000 m ,
Air Density = 0.908kg/cu m
Theoretical Pressure = 70.106kPa,
Average Expected Temperature = -4C,
Lift = -992 Newtons
Drag = 176 Newtons
For a 3000 m race, the rear wing gets 40kgf less of negative lift (which can be offset by slightly wider rear wings), whereas its drag is reduced by less than 9kgf. This for a rear wing, obviously, though the same effects can be expected for splitters and diffusers.
So, we ought to step back, look at it carefully and understand that the effects of racing at high altitude are dramatic for the ENGINE ONLY (and probably tires).