Back in July of 2017, Formula One confirmed it would be implementing a halo cockpit protection device for the upcoming 2018 season. Since then, teams have been scrambling to design ways in which to smoothly install the device on cars without affecting aero or weight performance.
The put together a video explaining what it had to do to accommodate the halo on its yet-to-be-revealed W09 F1 car. Because the series gave teams such little time to model its cars with the halo installed, it's been a "significant challenge," according to technical director James Allison.
The halo bar is a standardized piece of titanium given to all teams, with one single design and weight. Teams have had to figure out how to install the halo without disrupting airflow around the body and into the engine, while also keeping weight below the maximum threshold. The series has allowed teams to equip the piece with an aerodynamic fairing to better suit the aerodynamic flow of the rest of the car—but the weight and shape of the bar itself must remain the same.
We're curious to see how Mercedes, along with every other F1 team, have figured out clever ways to implement the halo into their cars once they're unveiled later this year.