500 sensors on the carThe number of monitors has even increased since Alpine’s switch to endurance racing’s headlining Hypercar class… “When we competed in LMP2, our car was equipped with around 200 sensors,” observes Race Engineer Thomas Tribotté. “This season, that number has soared to 500! Our telemetry system transmits between 2,000 and 2,500 items of data all the time. To process and analyse this information, the eight engineers like me in the pits are responsible for different aspects of the car. For example, we have two engine engineers who watch over power management, an area that is particularly crucial in the Hypercar class.”
“The data can be divided into a number of categories. First of all, there is the data that concerns the car’s reliability, notably the temperature of its brakes, engine and gearbox, as well as its tyre pressures. This essential information is coupled with warning signals, some of which alert the driver directly inside the car.” Running temperatures are particularly vital, especially in a race like Le Mans where the air temperature can vary from 10°C in the middle of the night to 30°C at the start and/or finish.