Lotus gave its track debut to its version of double DRS at Hockenheim on Friday, with the team hoping to gain as much valuable test mileage on it as possible.
The former Renault team has been working on its concept ever since its protest against the Mercedes design was rejected by the race stewards at the Chinese Grand Prix in Shanghai. A big effort by the team has resulted in it giving the green light for it to be tested by Kimi Raikkonen in the opening free practice for the German GP.
The team wants to use the test to check on the benefits of the design, but it is unlikely to race it this weekend. However, it is hoping to use it later on in the season when it could be valuable at the higher-downforce tracks.
According to AUTOSPORT technical correspondent Gary Anderson, the Lotus double DRS system could work through the placement of two intakes at the top of the airbox, flanking the main air intake. This airflow runs into a tube that runs to the back of the engine cover. When the DRS is not deployed, the air continues through an outlet at the rear of the engine cover. But when the DRS is activated, as with the Mercedes system, a hole is exposed on the inside of the rear wing. This creates a low-pressure "switch" diverting the air into another tube that connects to the underside of the rear wing, through a sealed chamber in the main plane and into the endplate. This then blows across the rear wing, causing some of the airflow passing over the wing to separate from it, therefore reducing drag when the DRS is open.
While the Mercedes system takes air in from the nose, the Lotus system uses the same basic concept of a hole exposed by the DRS being deploying allowing the air to escape onto the rear wing that has been given the go-ahead by the FIA despite complaints from rival teams earlier this year.
Back in April, technical director James Allison made it clear that the team was looking at exploiting the double DRS regulations after the Mercedes ruling.
"We are at the point of making estimates of how big the gain might be and assessing the difficulty in actually realizing that gain," he said. "It's anyone's guess how powerful any existing system is, but that's not the issue: it's how powerful we think we can make any system which we can develop now we know how the rules can be interpreted.
"There are systems like Mercedes has, but the interpretation allows other permutations too. So it could be an interesting time for developments in this area."
McLaren sporting director Sam Michael said his team had no plans to protest the Lotus system, saying he was confident that Lotus had gone through the correct procedures to ensure the system's legality.
"I'm sure that the legality of that is fine", said Michael. "I wouldn't question that. I'm sure that they have done all due process."