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The bike that curves like whales and is worth 60 thousand euros: Ganna is looking for the hour record

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I am Ruby Schultz, a journalist and author with experience in the news industry. I have worked at several top-tier publications, such as The News Dept., where I primarily cover technology news. My work has been featured in prominent outlets like The New York Times and Wired Magazine. I am passionate about exploring new technologies and implementing them into my stories to ensure an engaging narrative that captures readers’ attention.I specialize in researching tech trends, conducting interviews with industry insiders, writing opinion pieces, editing copy for accuracy and clarity – all while staying abreast of the latest developments within this rapidly changing field. In addition to my journalistic pursuits, I also manage multiple successful blogs on topics such as robotics and artificial intelligence (AI).

It costs like a high-end SUV, but has no engine. To overcome the resistance of the wind and go fast, it does not use gasoline, but is inspired by the movement of one of the most fascinating animals on Earth, the humpback whale (a type of whale). Pay the modest amount of 60 thousand euros (and wait many months to receive it) any enthusiast can buy (according to International Cycling Union regulations) the Bolide F Hr 3D built by the Venetian Pinarello with which Filippo Ganna (who is the champion of Verbania) will try on Saturday 8 October at the Grenchen velodrome (in Switzerland) to set the new world record of the hour on the track and, if possible, be the first to break down the “wall” of 56 kilometers.

Pippo’s Bolide is extremely normal in the sense that the geometry of the frame must strictly comply with the rules established by the UCI for this test and in particular the size ratio between the different tubes so that the position does not contradict (as in the case of Moser, Rominger and Boardman bikes in the 1980s and 1990s when the rider was horribly “smeared” onto the bike’s natural shape.

The frame is a monocoque completely printed (this is the first time this has happened) in 3D but (again good news) not in carbon fiber. The material is a new alloy based on: scandium, aluminum and magnesium renamed without too much imagination scammalloy
. The advantage is that with the same strength and lightness (we’re talking aviation alloys) by continuing to print with the scalmalloy you can create interlocking corners between the different parts (glued with epoxy resins) that the versatile carbon made impossible. From this point of view, for the first time, there were no limits when moving from the CAD drawing to the single piece mold. The goal is always the same: to make the man + bike complex as aerodynamic as possible, which is necessary at speeds of almost 60 kilometers per hour and even within a velodrome you have to deal with enormous air resistance.

«The cyclist’s legs go up and down all the time, following a rather complex but very repetitive trajectory – explain the designers of the Venetian company that supplies the bikes to Team Ineos -. The air flows around the seat tube and seatpost in a never linear fashion: it is continuously moved by the rider’s legs, which deflect the flow. This alternating airflow makes it very difficult for air to “stick” to the seat tube. Thus, the airflow is constantly moving away from the vertical tube, creating a large area of ​​low pressure that unfortunately generates large amounts of air resistance ».

The aerodynamic currents of Ganna’s bike

To combat air resistance, they studied the movement of that beautiful marine mammal that is the humpback whale. Humpback whales are known for their ability to make very sharp turns when swimming — they add Pinarello — and for their spectacular jumps out of the water. The researchers found that nodules (the projections on the front of the fins) are a major contributor to this ability. At the University of Adelaide studying these specific shapes of fins since 2006: first they found them an application for airplane wings and fans, then for bicycle frames. They also observed how the airflow around the seat tube alternates at a wide angle, resulting in flow separation and increased drag. So they managed to find that small ridges can minimize this separation effect and reduce aerodynamic drag, generating vortices of flow in the depressions between the protrusions, so that the flow behind the “spouts” remains as good as possible ».

And the little tops will appear on Saturday on the bike of the world and Olympic champion of the pursuit who, floating like a marine mammal, will try to bring back to Italy a title that only two Azzurris in history have won: Fausto Coppi and Ercole Baldini.

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The humpback whales’ ability to make tight turns was the basis of the aerodynamic research for the bike that Ganna will attempt to set the hour record

Source: Corriere

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