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Also known as dive planes or dive plates, they are small triangle wings attached to the front spoiler of a car for the purposes of modifying the aerodynamic characteristics of the car in a modest way. Canards help generate downforce in two different ways.
First, the canard redirects the oncoming air's momentum upwards, which causes a downward force on the canard. This is only moderate, since the velocity near the skin of the car is significantly slower than in the free stream because of boundary layer effect. Dive plates are more trimming devices than anything else, they are too small to generate large amounts of downforce; instead, they are used to fine tune the vehicle handling before a race.
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