7 December 2017
The U6 physicists were fortunate to have a VIP tour of the facilities at McLaren Technology Centre (MTC) on Thursday 16th November. The building, a mixture of sleek modern lines and textural design proved impressive enough, let alone the engineering endeavours contained inside it.
Due to the large volumes of supporters wishing to visit the MTC they do not guarantee members or visitors tours. Typically visitors are decided by a ballot, each month, so we were really privileged to get an almost all access visit!
Our tour of the facility included several highlights such as the boulevard, wind tunnel, strategy room, simulator, the pit stop, workshops. The boulevard hosted an impressive timeline of the successes of human ingenuity within mechanical and aerodynamic engineering and racing across the plethora of cars on display. It was a timeline of vehicles, and their accolades, that would make any racing fan jump for joy.
The boys were given access to the strategy room, a hothouse of activity on race days with screens everywhere relating statics for almost every aspect imaginable. This is the epicentre of decision making for team and drivers prior to, and during, races on the F1 circuit. If the boys thought it was all mechanical engineering before, now they realised companies also need software engineers, race analysts and logistics analysts to name just a few roles.
The rather impressive space-age road simulator, which a lucky few manage to get behind the wheel of, enables drivers to race on a digital version of each course across the world in a life-like virtual experience testing our car metrics. It is calibrated to within one hundredth of a second of the real experience of driving on a track, it’s a marvel of a mixture of engineering and computational creation.
The wind tunnel, pit stop shop and workshops all resonated the impressive attitude, mentality and dedication at McLaren and their specialist workforce. The spaces were all spotless and evidenced the success behaviours and attitudes, from all employees, at McLaren.
It was a truly inspirational visit that gave the boys insights into the many career opportunities available to them, having studied maths and/or physics.