Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and wind tunnels have long been the primary tools used by wheel engineers and aerodynamicists. However useful they are, though, they’re still based on laminar airflow — those picture-perfect parallel lines you see in illustrations — that doesn’t necessarily reflect real-world conditions.
So what happens if you introduce a degree of turbulence to the R&D process? Do things change? Can the wheels get better? And what might this mean for bikes and other gear in general? Buckle up for this one; we’re about to get real nerdy here.