ArmaUrto teams up with Wattshop to test products in Silverstone Sports Engineering Hub’s wind tunnel

ArmaUrto has teamed up with Wattshop to test the effects of its products in a controlled wind tunnel environment.

ArmaUrto says it is dedicated to developing and testing innovative products. During the development of its new ARMA range, the brand wanted to see if its products detract or aid the aerodynamics of a rider. The brand enlisted the help of Jamie Lowden and the team at Wattshop to put its products through their paces in the wind tunnel at the Silverstone Sports Engineering Hub.

The test took place on 6th December 2021.

Designed and directed by Lowden, the ArmaUrto Impact Pro Aero Baselayer and ArmaUrto Hip Pads (usually present in the VIPAR Bib Shorts) were tested to determine if there was a positive or negative impact on a rider’s CdA. The CdA of an object is the aerodynamic drag coefficient multiplied by the frontal area. A lower number implies less power is required to move through the air for the same speed.

The items tested for impact on CdA included ArmaUrto shoulder pads (item one), ArmaUrto hip pads (item two) and ArmaUrto base layer (elbow and shoulder pads integrated into a ¾ -arm length base layer) (item three). Items one and two were tested on a static mannequin beneath a Nalini skinsuit. Item three was tested on a pedalling rider beneath a Ribble-Weldite Pro Cycling long-sleeved jersey manufactured by HUUB. Results were compared to baseline in all cases (either mannequin/rider with no ArmaUrto padding):

– Test 1: Mannequin with Nalini skinsuit – Mannequin baseline
– Test 2: Mannequin with Nalini skinsuit and ArmaUrto shoulder pads
– Test 3: Mannequin with Nalini skinsuit & ArmaUrto hip pads
– Test 4: Mannequin with Nalini skinsuit & ArmaUrto shoulder and hip pads
– Test 5: Mannequin with Nalini skinsuit (repeat Test 1 – to confirm no mannequin movement during test)
– Test 6: Pedalling rider with long sleeve HUUB jersey – Rider baseline
– Test 7: Pedalling rider with long sleeve HUUB jersey and ArmaUrto base layer (including shoulder and elbow pads) Each test was conducted at five different yaw values (-10o, -5o, 0o, 5o, 10o) to investigate the effect of crosswinds.

The results
The aerodynamic impact of the ArmaUrto pads and base layer were minimal and depend on the location of the pads, said the brand. When tested on a mannequin, the ArmaUrto pads can either increase or decrease CdA depending on position and airspeed. The observed range of impact on CdA for the mannequin was -1.4% to +1.0% (-0.0037m2 to +0.0029m2).

When tested on a mannequin, the shoulder pads generally resulted in a faster performance with a saving of 17 seconds when riding for an hour at 50kph. This is likely dependent on the positioning of the mannequin and pads and should not be taken to mean these pads are an aerodynamic aid, said ArmaUrto. The hip pads resulted in a slower performance at all airspeeds tested. When riding for an hour at 30kph, the hip pads were 12 seconds slower than baseline.

The performance when the shoulder and hip pads were worn together was dependent on airspeed. At 30kph, this setup was 11 seconds slower over one hour. At 50kph, this setup was five seconds faster over one hour. When tested on a rider, the ArmaUrto base layer was nine seconds slower when riding for an hour at 40kph. The impact on CdA from the baselayer depended on the airspeed and was +0.3% to +0.73% ( +0.0011m2 to +0.0026m2).

“Following the detailed testing by the Wattshop team, it’s clear that in certain situations, the presence of ArmaUrto improves the aerodynamic capabilities of the rider,” said a statement. “In other situations, the presence of ArmaUrto slightly reduces the aerodynamic capabilities.

“The results indicate that the positive (or negative) impact is generally minimal. However, the huge benefits of wearing ArmaUrto remain. Whether it’s during training rides or during a race – the ArmaUrto range protects the rider from injury caused by impact and/or loss of skin.

Read more: Garmin announces two new smart watches for 2022 

“Without ArmaUrto months of training and preparations can be ruined by a crash. With ArmaUrto, the rider has a fighting chance of jumping back on the bike and continuing the race.”

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