Source: Brembo announcement

DETROIT — Brembo engineers offer a guide to braking for this weekend’s Formula 1 Honda Grand Prix to run at the Suzuka International Racing Course, Oct. 7-9.

Two weeks after the MotoGP championship, Formula 1 is also returning to Japan where it had not been held since 2019 when the country effectively was closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Suzuka International Racing Course is classified as a circuit that is not very demanding on the brakes, on a scale of 1 to 5, it is rated two on the difficulty index.

Formula 1 made its debut on this track in 1987, but the Honda-owned circuit celebrates its 60th birthday this year. In August it was used for the Suzuka 8-hours which was won by the home team.

The first few times it was held, various single-seaters were forced to withdraw due to problems with the brakes, a problem which seems to have been resolved even if in 2019 two single-seaters were disqualified for having adjusted the brake balance electronically.

300 grams (0.66 lbs.) of brake pads

In addition to aluminum alloy calipers and carbon fiber discs, Brembo supplies the teams with brake pads, also made of carbon fiber: every team uses up to 600 per season. There are at least two different types of material and the same number of geometries are used with a total of four possible combinations for both the front and rear brakes. Each team uses a specially designed pad which perfectly matches the geometry of the Brembo caliper used.

The length of each pad ranges from 160 to 190 mm (6.3 to 7.4 in.) and the surface area from 50 to 90 cm2 (16.6 to 35.4 sq. inches) whereas the weight varies from 150 to 300 grams (0.3 to 0.66 lbs.). The pads have a friction coefficient of roughly 0.5 and the operating temperature is the same as the discs but unlike these, the thermal conductivity is reduced in order not to transfer the heat generated by the friction to the caliper that contains them.

Sport pads for road vehicles

Thanks to the experience it has gained in 47 years of Formula 1 and its partnership with car manufacturers, Brembo has developed a range of brake pads for street-legal cars which guarantee maximum safety when braking. These include the Sport/HP2000 pads designed and tested for a predominantly sporty road use.

This is a product that is designed for drivers with sports ambitions and those who want the maximum from their cars. The Sport/HP2000 pads offer outstanding performance even without warming up and at low speeds thanks to a special material that ensures constant friction at all temperature ranges.

Nine very short braking moments

Like all tracks which are very drivable, the Suzuka International Racing Course has fast corners where use of the brakes is almost insignificant. The brakes are not used at all on half of the 18 turns and on another three, the braking distance does not even reach 50 meters (164 feet) and the brakes are used for less than 12 seconds per lap, the equivalent of 13 percent of the entire GP.

There are only two braking episodes where the speed drops by over 170 km/h (105.6 mph) and both take 2.3 seconds to be completed. The values on Turn 9, named after Ernst Degner, are slightly lower but the corner requires 4.3 G of deceleration and 133 kg (293 lbs.) of load on the brake pedal. From the starting line to the checkered flag, each driver exerts a total load of 38 metric tons on the brake pedal.

To view the entire announcement, click HERE.