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Data Analysis Fundamentals: Steering Application

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Steering Application


00:00 - If you have a steering angle channel as part of your datalogging package, then this can open up the ability to analyse both the car balance and decide if a certain handling characteristic is an inherent problem with the chassis or if it's driver induced.
00:15 In order to do this, we want to look at a time/distance plot of the lateral G force trace and the steering angle overlaid together.
00:23 One of the more common issues we'll come across is a car that exhibits corner entry understeer.
00:29 And this may certainly be the reality in many cases.
00:33 This turn in understeer can be induced by the driver by turning into the corner too early.
00:39 The problem with doing this is that the initial turn in only requires a slow application of steering but as the apex approaches and the driver realises their mistake, they need to rapidly add steering lock in an attempt to reach the apex.
00:53 This has the effect of tightening the corner radius and can result in understeer.
00:58 We can see this in the steering channel, was an initial gentle application of steering followed by a more abrupt application as the car approaches the apex.
01:07 We'll see the lateral G force trace initially track the applied steering angle but then the lateral G trace will stabilise while we see the steering wheel angle continue to increase.
01:18 This will result in the lateral G trace peaking later in the corner after the driver has begun to reduce the steering angle.
01:25 While this is an example of driver induced understeer, the same two channels can also show us when there is a mechanical understeer issue with the chassis.
01:33 In this instance, we will see the lateral G force and steering angle channels increase in unison.
01:41 If the driver then continues to increase the steering angle we will see that the additional steering angle doesn't result in any further increase in lateral G force.
01:49 There are more advanced techniques for analysing the handling balance of the chassis however at this level, the lateral G force and steering angle channels are sufficient to get an understanding of what is happening without the need to dive deep into complex math channels.

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