P.U.R.E: 2014 F1 Engine

The P.U.R.E. Corporation have released the first image of a 2014 F1 engine to René Fagnan of Canadian website Auto123.com; these will be all new 1.6l v6 turbo engines. New to F1, P.U.R.E. (Propulsion Universelle et Recuperation d’Energie) are a start up business created by Craig Pollock and backed by private investors. Initially based out of Mecachrome’s facilities, they are now based at the Toyota Motorsport Gmbh’s (TMG) Cologne technical facility. Seeking to exploit the new Engine rules as a route into F1, P.U.R.E. are speculatively developing their own engine, as they do not yet have a team announced as a partner to use the engine. Customers notwithstanding P.U.R.E. are a serious proposition, with Ex-Ferrari and FIA engineer Gilles Simon employed as Technical Director, as well as former Renault Sport MD Christian Contzen acting as a consultant. The engine’s design has been in progress since July 2011 by Simon and his team, mainly using simulation tools although single cylinder testing has also been carried out. With the move to TMG the engine’s major castings have been signed off and ordered, so that testing of a complete engine can be scheduled for July this year. Thereafter, a second generation engine will be ready for the summer of 2013.

In summary the 2014 engine rules mandate a 90-degree V6 engine of 1.6 litres, with a fixed crankshaft axis and chassis/gearbox mounting points. The engine can have a single turbo charger, which must be mounted along the cars centreline. Use of KERS is extended with a greater capacity for the Kinetic system (as used currently) as well as the introduction of a Thermal Energy Recovery System (TERS). Further green initiatives are caps on fuel flow and revs limited to 15,000rpm. Despite having a smaller cubic capacity and fuel allocation, the engine will produce the same maximum power as the current 2.4l V8 engines, albeit only when the Energy Recovery Systems are in use.

Completely unrelated to the technical side of the new regulations, is the Fans concern that the engines won’t sound very good. This is based around view that the engines have a relatively small capacity and additionally have the muffling effect of a turbo charger. This format being akin the WRC engines which do not have a pleasing engine note. But this disregards the F1 engines open exhaust, higher RPM and the aggressive use of the turbocharger itself.
Every engineer I’ve spoken to about the exhaust note has said they will sound good. Okay they are not going to be the same glorious sound of a V12, but they will be far from the dull sound of other small capacity turbocharged racing engines. I recall the sound of the original 1.5l turbo engines from the eighties; they revved far lower than the 2014 engine and still sounded loud and exciting.
Speaking to Auto123.com Gilles Simon commented on the engines sound “The sound of the V6 engine will of course be different. It’ll probably be a bit lower, but I really don’t think it’ll be unexciting for all that. The big turbine will be making a lot of noise, whistling really loudly. No, I the new cars won’t be boring at all”.

Engine Architecture

Looking at the P.U.R.E. CAD drawing we can see the basic layout of the engine and turbo installation; however we have to accept that this is a first public image and the detail of the installation may change. Indeed, Simon has described a different turbo installation at previous engine technology presentations. Having already seen images and some parts from the Mercedes AMG 2014 engine, I can confirm the P.U.R.E. installation appears to be similar to what the Brixworth factory has prepared.

What can be seen in this image are the engine block (grey), exhausts (brown), turbo-turbine (pink), turbo-compressor (blue), induction manifold (blue) and airbox (dark grey). Additionally the double camshafts (pink – exhaust \ blue – inlet) and the front chassis mounting plate (green) are visible. For clarity we are looking behind the engine, so the gearbox will mount to the face we can and the front of the engine mounts to the back of the monocoque.

Being of smaller displacement and less cylinders the engine is physically smaller than the outgoing engines. But the crankshaft axis is almost twice the height of the current engines, so overall engine height will be similar.

The turbocharger installation starts with the exhausts, the three exhaust branches joins with short primary pipes to the 3 way collector. This feeds a single secondary pipe leading to the turbochargers turbine. Unusually the turbine has two inlet feeds, one at the bottom for the left bank of cylinders and another at the top for the right bank of cylinders. This complicated the turbine design, but allows for much tidier exhaust routing. This will keep the exhaust gas velocity higher, so less power will be lost from the combustion chamber to the turbo. One detail to note is the convoluted sections of exhaust, to allow movement between the turbo and the exhaust preventing cracks forming in the exhaust.
In this image no wastegate or dump valves are visible, used to manage turbo lag by allowing the turbo to keep spinning when the driver is off throttle. With the TERS system its possible energy harvested from the turbocharger could be reused to keep the turbo spinning. Again we cannot see the TERS MGU in this CAD image. TERS will work via a similar method the KERS, a Motor Generator Unit (MGU) will harvest energy from the exhaust by sitting inline with the turbo charger shaft. Its will generate power from the spinning turbo and will be able to store and discharge that energy. In some cases the team will reuse the TERS energy into the main KERS boost (directly or via a battery) or reuse the TERS energy back into the turbo. In February’s issue of Race Engine Technology Magazine (RET), there was an interview with Simon by the Editor, Ian Bamsey. Simon commented to RET that P.U.R.E. will use TERS to pass power to the KERS MGU to power the engine. Using a battery as a buffer when too much energy is being harvested\discharged.

Particularly relevant to recent F1 Aero design the exhaust will be a single outlet exiting from the centre of the top body. The rules still allow for two outlets, so perhaps a split in the exhaust and repositioning to gain some better aero effect could be adopted. However the 2014 rules were drafted before the current restrictions on exhaust position and will need to be rewritten to account for the central turbo charger regulation.

The turbo charger is mounted at the back of the engine, which will see it placed above the clutch and set partly inside the gearbox case. The second element of the turbocharger is the compressor; this sits head of the turbine. We can only see one outlet for the compressor, but it’s possible that the casing has two outlets as per the turbine. This will allow for two intercoolers, tidier packaging and critically a better balanced inlet manifold with a pressure feed for both banks.

At the IMIS show in Indianpolis, Simon showed another image of the engine. Simon explained to RET that the compressor may end up sitting ahead of the engine, with a shaft linking it to the turbine running through the engines “V”. This will keep the compressor in a cooler location and allow for even shorter, tidier pipework. Albeit at the expense of a longer and heavier turbine shaft, with potential torsional and inertia issues when the turbo spools up.

A sign that this CAD image is not a fully representative 2014 engine is the size of the compressor. In this image it is around the same size as the turbine, the Mercedes AMG compressor I saw was far larger, may be twice the diameter of the one shown here. Gilles Simon commented to Auto123.com “We’ll be using huge turbines that rev extremely quickly, up to 200,000 rpm”. Most likely these large diameter compressors will force some careful thought on their packaging into the chassis.
In this installation we can see the compressor outlet ends with a bare pipe and the inlet manifold has a corresponding open inlet. This will be for a sidepod mounted intercooler to cool the inlet charge. As fuel flow is limited, therefore revs or boost pressure will be relatively low. So it’s argued an intercooler may not be strictly necessary, as having one will extend the pipework to the detriment of turbo lag, also adding additional weight and aerodynamic drag. But for the P.U.R.E. example we see here, there is the option to have one fitted.
Having been used to normally aspirated (NA) engine and their airboxes, the inlet manifold looks very different, the two plenums are linked via smaller pipe, and their position is directly above the inlet valve. As the plenums do not rely on acoustic tuning as much as NA engines, their positioning is a little easier than with a NA airbox design. We can see fuel injection rails sticking quite wide out of the plenums; this doesn’t look suitable for aerodynamic packaging and will need to change before the unit is installed in a car.
Sitting between the inlet plenums is the airbox, this serves much more as a high pressure feed and filtration for the engine, than a NA airbox, which also serves as a tuning device for the induction process. We can see the filter which would fill the top of the airbox is huge and still be fed by a snorkel from the roll hoop as is used currently. Although the draw from turbo charger will ‘suck’ air from the inlet, the return to the aerodynamically better blade roll hoops may be an option for the team. As the better airbox tuning with a single inlet is no longer required. Again should the compressor be relocated to the front of the engine the airbox will be easier to package and will not be parked between the relatively hot induction plenums.

Even though the 2014 engine regulations are very prescriptive in a lot of the specification of the engine, we will some variation in turbo installations and the key factor will be in ‘energy management’. That is the power generated from the petrol, the KERS and the TERS to get the best laptime. Peak power will not be the critical factor, but how the energy is harvested and redeployed. Unfortunately this will be invisible to the fans and the engine suppliers aren’t likely to be very public about their Energy Recovery methods. So 2014 may be a hard year to the public to understand from a powertrain perspective.

Many thanks for P.U.R.E. and also Rene Fagnan of AUTO123.com for permission to use the image in this article.

More on P.U.R.E.

38 thoughts on “P.U.R.E: 2014 F1 Engine

  1. Will they be using pneumatic valves? Also how much cooling will the engine require compared to the current ones? That could have a big impact on sidepod shape.

    • There was discussion about pneumatic valves in RET. Remember 15k RPM is still high, but engineering a solution is far easier with pneumatics than metal springs

      Cooling will be lower for the engine, but the additional turbo intercooler and cooling for and the ERS means overall cooler volume should be about the same.

  2. Will this lead to a reduction in fuel consumption (and therefore GHGs) by downsizing? And is it clear whether the TERS system will be a push-to-use system like the KERS?

  3. Hmm, very interesting.

    I like the double entry exhaust. That is very logical. But if they are going for a much larger compressor, maybe they should switch sides, exhaust in the valley of the V6 and inlet on the outside. Then the packaging can be much more compact, but I don’t know if the heat is manageable in that scenario. Hmm doubt it. Remember the BMW with melting cylinder heads?

    Two points here.
    1 If they don’t use an intercooler, maybe they can inject (part of the) fuel into the compressor side . this will cool the air a little and pre-mix the fuel and air.
    2 I remember the 1500 cc Honda Turbo. That was a glorious sound. Except in Monaco. There they did something strange to the mixture I am sure. Senna’s McLaren gave three big bangs (like real explosions) and the car was at the end of the “straight” Very very strange.

    • The rules demand the inlets are inside the “V” and the exhausts outside. For me that is a shame, the reversed-heads on the Ferrari 126 and Audi LMP set up makes far more sense with a single turbo.

      • Audi recently released pictures of their VTG turbo for their R18 engine. That turbo also has a double entry turbine as well as a double exist compressor.

        I agree with you that it is stupid that F1 will not allow the exhausts to be inside the V. Also VTG is banned, but this might be less of an issue because the TERS can keep the turbo spinning.

    • Regarding your first point, indirect injection has been (recently) banned on the new engine, it won’t happen.

  4. A word about noise that 2014 engines will make (from a retired sound engineer):
    Remember the Senna’s in 88? That should be very close to what we are going to get in 2014.

    A while ago I made an analysis from Vettel’s lap from Monza – the result was 1200 Hz at full rev (18,000 RPM). The math is simple: 18,0000 rpm are 300 rps per cylinder, with 4 stroke engine = 150 ignitions per second, x 8 cyl = 1200 ignitions per second (1200 Hz.)
    The race revs that we’re likely to see are around 13,000 (my average guesstimate), which would mean, following the math from before = 750 Hz. That’s not really bad at all, still, it won’t be V12, we better forget about them being reintroduced.
    The 4 cylinder would have been awful, however.

    • What about the sound of the turbo? Does 750Hz represent the fundamental frequency? Is there an “ideal” frequency or is it just the higher the better? And what about the sound levels?

      • Kimi, stop asking me such questions – since you are racing in Lotus, you should know better than me🙂 Ask James Allison.
        Joking aside, no, it is not the fundamental frequency (assuming you mean the sound term: the lowest possible frequency of a waveform, derived from Fourier)- it’s the maximum you can get from such engine.
        The turbo offers even more possibilities, AFAIK.

        About the sound levels, assuming we’re talking about decibels – the RS27 engine from 2011 can achieve 130 db (at full revs) – that’s the human threshold of pain! I don’t know if 2014 are projected with the same figures in mind, but I will assume yes.

  5. Is the requirement for a turbo shaft written into the 2014 engine regulations?

    If not then things could get very interesting indeed as teams may choose to bypass the exhaust turbine entirely at choice “on throttle” moments in order to gain unconventionally good MAP/EMAP relationships across the engine.

    Also, do we know whether or not enhancing the exhaust energy in “overrun” will remain banned?

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    • Being an engineer for a major F1 engine supplier, I sort of have to disagree. Sure, we’d all prefer a raging N/A V12, but getting the best out of the 2014 regulation is an interesting challenge, and definitely refreshing after 5 years of “frozen V8”.

      • Agreed: the engine designers need space to develop, and unlike high speed aerodynamics high compression, force induced, high-efficiency, high specific output engines do have a reasonably direct real-world application route.

      • Guillame, judging by your name, is that Renault? But anyway, a question, if I may:
        In 2014 the teams will have more freedom when setting up SECU? Something like 25% of the options being available for alteration? I’ve intercepted that rumor floating around, but could not find a reliable source to confirm it.

      • Guillaume, Im not engine engineer so I can argue as you have the experience but I what I mean is not necessary a v12 or something massive.
        Im engineer but my field is IT / System. For me there nothing more challenging and “fun” when they give a clear objective to solve and of course is always limited by money.

  7. I’m looking forward to these new engines, it’s a new era in F1 and we all need to either evolve or die off. Turbos have such a nice 80s sound as well!

  8. The description of the engine says: fixed mounting points, does this mean the engine won’t be part of the chassis structure anymore? How do people envision the structure supporting the engine and the connection between the tub, in the front, and the gearbox and rear axle in the rear?

    • The mounting points all need to be int he same position on the front and back of the engine. So ‘theoretically’ you could bolt any engine into any chassis. Or at least in more practical terms, not have to re-engineer the monocoque and gearbox when using a different engine.

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  10. “In this image no wastegate or dump valves are visible, used to manage turbo lag by allowing the turbo to keep spinning when the driver is off throttle.”

    Thats one way to look at it.. In for example WRC you do not use Dump Valves, and the reason is that you gain boost much quicker when you are back on the throttle without it. It sure hurts the impeller by bouncing the pressure back when the intake is closed, but the pressure remains, at least partly so less downtime from spinning upp the turbo.

    • That method only works because in WRC they are permitted to generate large amounts of turbine drive pressure during overrun which prevent the turbo shaft speed from falling off too dramatically, not sure the F1 boys will have the same freedom with there standardised engine management strategy framework.

      • Oh yes that is true, shouldn´t be possible in F1 then after the changes to engine mapping from last year..

  11. The regs say 15000rpm, but they won’t be run that fast, as full fuel flow is allowed from 10500rpm up these engines will run at up to about 12500rpm max with max power from 10500-12500 (for 6 gears need engine power speed range of about 1:1.2 to cover 100-300km/hr).

    They will almost certainly use a Miller-cycle (short inlet stroke via late closing inlet valve), for 3 reasons:
    1/ It is higher efficiency allowing you to extract more power from the limited fuel flow.
    2/ It maximises the power delivered through the crankshaft. Turbocompounding allows you to recover energy from the exhaust much like the Miller Cycle, but you are limited as to how much power you can deliver from KERS, so the Miller Cycle will overall give you more peak power at the rear wheels.
    3/ Miller Cycle is likely to be more efficient than turbo-compounding anyway, though you will still see turbocompounding for its ability to extract every last scrap of power and eliminate turbolag.

    Going to V6 from I4 has increased costs greatly without increasing power. It may suit Ferrari and McLaren supercar marketing requirements, but other teams probably don’t get any benefit and it costs them more (costs strongly linked to number of bores and valves).

    Lack of hot-side in V is stupid, particularly given single turbocharger. It limits performance and make packaging more difficult, many car manufacturers like Audi, BMW are moving to hot-side in turbos. This is very short sighted of the FIA and can’t see any reason why it is needed. The regs do not prohibit running the exhaust over the heads into the V, and that will shorten the exhaust runners, increasing turbine energy recovery and engine power even if it is much harder to design and build – wouldn’t be at all surprised if one or two engine makers choose that option to deliver a bit more power.

    The turbos themselves will be much different from conventional cars given turbocompounding (turbo energy recovery), more like diesel turbos. They can pretty much ignore turbo-lag which for most cars leads to very compromised lightweight turbine designs that weigh less so that they spin up faster. For F1 it will be all about making the most efficient turbines and compressors possible as you can then use the turbine shaft motor-generator to overcome any turbo-lag with a boost from the motor. They will be designed to be efficient in a very narrow range of air mass flow and pressure conditions (basically peak power point), unlike conventional car turbos that need to perform OK across large range of pressure and flow without achieving the peaks in efficiency. The more efficient the compressor and turbo the more excess power you will have to feed back into the KERs system and the less intercooling you will need to do. The motor-generator on the turbo can compensate for the narrow compressor map when accelerating in 1st gear up to 100km/hr by keeping the turbo spinning at required speed and dumping some of air out a bypass valve to keep airflow in required range.

    • Oops forgot the lean burn side of things. The engines will (in combination with everything else) run quite lean in order to increase efficiency further. This can produce almost as many gains as the Miller Cycle, so for 100kg/hr fuel flow a conventional stoichiometric high speed engine might get 255g/kWhr (384kW) a miller cycle might achieve BSFC of 230g/kWh (435kW) and a lean burn Miller might get as far as 215g/kWh (465kW) once fully developed.

      This has added benefits in cooling the exhaust down considerably, making materials pretty easy but it will require significantly bigger compressors, turbines and higher pressures.

    • Slight revision. Just seen that 2014 regs require 8 forward gears rather than current 6 so that reduces the necessary rev range even further to about 10500-12000rpm for max power given limited fuel flow.

  12. The physical size of the turbo looks far too large in comparison to the engine.

    I don’t know if the rules allow, but with a 90deg V6 I might opt to locate the turbo in the vee. This would give more favorable exhaust plumbing, and less complex intake/intercooler pipes.

    Also, if the rules allow, I would split the exhaust flows from each cylinder port. With one exhaust port going to the turbine, and the other bypassing the turbine. This would give better pumping efficiency in the engine.

  13. I’m confused. How does the TERS actually work? From the text it seems like it’s using kinetic energy of the exhaust gas, not thermal.

  14. I think it’s to signify that’s being generated from the waste exhaust to separate it from the KERS from the cars kinetic energy, rather than to actually say its generated from heat.

  15. So we have the current 2.4 V8’s which are already under powered (approx 750bhp) in relation to the aero and grip, and you intend to replace them with an engine with the same power but “albeit only when the Energy Recovery Systems are in use.” which means much of the time the 2014 engine will be even more down on power.
    This really does appear to be ‘F1 – Lite’ and let’s get something straight. The 2014 engine will be as far from the 1000-1400bhp turbo engines of the 80’s, as Earth is from the edge of the universe.

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