Already synonymous with innovation in design and technology, last weekend’s Italian Grand Prix introduced another F1 broadcasting first. We’ve already enjoyed various on-screen display graphics including G-Force, KERS and rev counters but the latest footage has to be the best yet.
Thermographic cameras fitted to British driver Paul Di Resta’s Force India race car showed in glorious technicolour, the heat build-up in the front tyres and the different effects that acceleration, braking and cornering all have on the rubber compound.
Although thermal imaging has been around since 2008, with tyre manufacturers using the technology for product development – both for race cars and road cars – this is the first time that it’s been used during an actual Grand Prix for education / entertainment value.
It certainly proved to be a lot more visually exciting than test cricket’s ‘hot spot’ technology, which may or may not produce a single white dot, provided the wind is blowing in the right direction!
Of course, like any new innovation, the novelty can soon wear off. This wasn’t a problem last Sunday, however, as Di Resta locked up his front tyres on the very first lap of the Monza circuit and crashed out of the race, producing some spectacular thermal images in the process.
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