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Tracking Down Tyre Grip

New measurements show that contact and material damping are decisive

Jülich, 16 April 2013 – Tyres aren't just a great unknown in Formula One racing. Rubber is a material with complex properties and this is particularly true of the composition of modern car tyres. How well they grip the road surface depends on various factors. In experiments, scientists at Jülich have shown that at low speeds the actual contact area is decisive. At higher speeds, however, the viscoelasticity of the rubber is the most important factor. They report on their findings in the Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter.

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