What will F1 look like in 2030? Oculus Rift, breathable cars and AR slip streams, says Human Ignition
Burn energy drink and Lotus F1 Team have combined to create a documentary movie that looks at the future of Formula One motor-racing and attempts to predict how the sport will change by 2030.
Human Ignition investigates the shift in technology over the lifespan of F1 and how it might further be utilised to improve racing in the future. It looks at the cars, the drivers, the technology and the experience and comes up with some intriguing ideas.
For a start, Hollywood vehicle designer Harold Belker, one of the concept designers of the Batmobile in Batman and Robin, and vehicles for Tron and Minority Report, is the main driving force behind the F1 car design for 2033.
Hi design reduces the need for regular pit stops, by increasing aiflow and replacing the fuel-tank with a battery. Plus, the use of smart tyres ensure that different track conditions can be adapted to, and the front spoilers are made of a memory flex composite, changing the physical shape of the car mid-drive.
In addition, Oculus Rift-style displays in their helmets could be used by the drivers to add augmented reality to their view, including graphical representations of the slip stream behind vehicles in front.
Lotus F1 Team driver Romain Grosjean, experienced Oculus Rift himself as part of the documentary, but doesn't believe one of the other ideas explored will ever be feasible. Artificially intelligent driver-less cars shouldn't be part of the sport's future.
"Humans need to remain at the heart of Formula One," he said. "And the real answer for the future of the sport is where technology meets people. The fans love the unpredictiblity of a human driver, I don’t think that will change, we need to look to a future where technology can truly enhance the performance of drivers."
A full-length film version of Human Ignition will be shown at film festivals around the world this summer and then broadcast by various international TV partners in the autumn. However, you can check out an episodic version on YouTube for free now on the Burn energy drink channel.