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Red Bull's megabill for new fuel meters

2014-03-28 13:32

MORE FUEL DRAMA: Red Bull will be installing new fuel sensorS for the 2014 Malaysian GP. This is a Gill sensor of the type used in Formula 1. Image: GILL SENSORS

SEPANG, Malaysia - The Times newspaper in the UK has reported that Red Bull, after Daniel Ricciardo's disqualification in Melbourne, spent the equivalent of more than R1.56-million on five regulation sensors for the 2014 Malaysian F1 GP.

A team source told the newspaper: "We are not taking any chances. We have gone out independently and bought sensors so we know that we will have at least one that works properly."

Red Bull has appealed Ricciardo's exclusion and after the race invited International Automobile Federation to inspect the allegedly faulty sensors at the team's plant north of London.

SISTER TEAM PROBLEMS

The trouble hasn't stopped there...

Germany's Auto Motor and Sport magazine reports that, during the first practice session at Sepang, Ricciardo's RB10 once again struck fuel-flow sensor problems. Correspondent Michael Schmidt said the also Renault-powered sister team Toro Rosso also had problems getting a signal from the sensors.

A new sensor costing the equivalent of more than R130 000 at full calibration was fitted to Ricciardo's car for second practice.

"So much for saving money," Red Bull's Helmut Marko bluntly observed.

More serious, however, is the risk of further disqualifications. What will Red Bull do now if, as in Melbourne, the federation asks the team to reduce the Renault engine's fuel-flow?

"I don't know," team boss Christian Horner answered. "Maybe two sensors should be installed in different places and the average value read to reduce the risk of incorrect measurements."

MAKER'S MEDIA RELEASE

A media release after the Australian F1 GP said the federation provided had provided Gill Sensors with positive feedback on the performance of its fuel-flow meter, confirming its confidence in the development and stating the meters met federation accuracy specification.

Gill added that the meter development included an extensive testing programme which involved liaising with many F1 teams for feedback on design and functionality. Calibration is handled by a third-party company.

"The meters use ultrasonic technology because of its resilience in extreme operating conditions," Gill added. "The FIA chose Gill Sensors for this complex development because of Gill’s 29 years of proven experience in ultrasonics.
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Read more on:    red bull  |  2014 malaysian gp  |  sepang  |  formula 1

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