What is a Diffuser?

Diffuser, Aero, Downforce


Diffuser and Front floor from a 2004-2006 Formula Renault 2.0

What is A diffuser?  In an automotive context, is a shaped section of the car underbody which improves the car’s aerodynamic properties by enhancing the transition between the high-velocity airflow underneath the car and the much slower freestream airflow of the ambient atmosphere.

It works by providing a space for the underbody airflow to decelerate and expand (in area, density remains constant at the speeds that cars travel) so that it does not cause excessive flow separation and drag, by providing a degree of “wake infill” or more accurately, pressure recovery.

The diffuser itself accelerates the flow in front of it, which helps generate downforce.