Data Visualisation Projects Win First F1 Connectivity Prize

Tata Communications announces the winners of the first challenge in the 2015 F1 Connectivity Innovation Prize, which wants to make better use of team data

Tata Communications has revealed the three winners of the first round of its F1 Connectivity Innovation Prize, which tasked entrants with finding a new way to display telemetry data collected from cars’ on-board sensors.

The competition was held for the first time last year as part of the Indian company’s role as the official connectivity partner of Formula One, providing communications to Formula One Management (FOM) at every race on the 2015 calendar. Tata also provides communications for the Mercedes F1 team as part of a separate relationship.

F1 connectivity challenge

Tata F1 Connectivity DatabricksPrevious challenges have set tasks aimed at turning the huge amount of data created by F1 cars into relevant insights for teams and improving the viewing experience for fans.

The first winning entry in this year’s contest was submitted by Ravi and Svetlana Sawhne for a system called Databricks (pictured left), which visualises data like speed in a ‘brick-like’ format that can be compared to historical data to allow engineers to detect unusual patterns.

The system can learn what has happened to a driver in the past at a certain point of the track in similar conditions, allowing teams to take appropriate action.

Marco EinÖder and Leire Apraiz from Spain developed a modular GUI (pictured right) that presents key information, such as tyre degradation, alongside customisable contextual data in coloured boxes. The main statistic is shown in a square block while other data is displayed in rectangular blocks that can be moved around by engineers.Tata F1 Connectivity GUI

Paul Clarke from Australia was the third and final winner for his ‘Signals and Streams’ idea (pictured below). The Signals component would use machine learning to help filter out the most important information, which would then be sent to teams using an instant communication tool called Streams. This, Clarke, believes will help provide relevant information more quickly in what can be a data saturated environment.

Impressive entries

Tata F1 Connectivity Signals and StreamsThe second challenge will be set later this year and all winners will be in a chance of winning the grand prize of $50,000 and a trip to the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

“We’ve been hugely impressed by the response to the challenge we set to consider how to derive clear advantage from the considerable volume of data we generate at the track – and importantly, to provide this competitive insight both in real-time and to a high standard of accuracy,” said Paddy Lowe, technical director at Mercedes. “The winning entries are all commendable in their originality as well as their viability, and represent the best of a very impressive array of submissions.”

Communications are becoming increasingly vital to F1, with a number of teams partnering with networking firms to ensure that they can instantly analyse data from their cars in the hope that this can give them an edge over their rivals.

 Are you a tech Olympian? Find out with our sporting IT quiz!

Tata F1 Connectivity Signals and Streams

Picture 1 of 3