Friday the 28th of April saw IIDEA Limited deliver our second batch of components for the SHU Racing 2017 racing car. This second 2017 delivery was a new set of hubs for the car and followed on from the set of suspension uprights delivered last week. This year the hubs are manufactured from lower density titanium alloy grade 5 (titanium with alloying additions of 6% aluminium and 4% vanadium giving increased strength). This grade of titanium alloy offers similar levels of strength to low alloy steels but at around 60% the density permitting lighter components for the same size and strength.
On high performance vehicles, this reduction in weight for similar strength can see significant improvements in performance. The performance advantage is not just the reduction in weight but also where the weight is removed from. If the unsprung weight (which is the weight of the moving parts of the suspension system) can be reduced, it allows the suspension system to react more quickly to changes in the road surface. Alternatively, reduction in weight of the vehicle and suspension system allows for smaller and lighter springs and shock absorbers to be used further perpetuating the overall weight reduction of the vehicle.