The fabric wind tunnel is the backbone to our fabric selection process. We developed our own fabric wind tunnel to allow us to test isolated cylinders, wrapped in fabric in a highly repeatable manner. Testing on simple cylinders allows us to make extremely subtle changes that on their own might not be measurable in the Large Wind Tunnel, but when added up can make the difference between losing and breaking records.
The process starts by thinking of a concept and making a ‘sock’ that can be placed over the cylinder. A fan blows air over the cylinder and we record the drag across a range of speeds to find out how each technology performs at different speeds on different sized riders. Every rider is unique and even the same fabric offers different performance on different riders.
Over 50,000 combinations of fabric, speed and cylinder size have been tested in the Small Wind Tunnel since the beginning of 2018 and with unlimited access we are constantly pushing development to stay ahead of the competition. There isn’t a single place in the world with the amount of data we have and the engineering talent to translate it into a faster suit in the real world.