The automobile, developed in the late nineteenth century, is a sophisticated system designed to give people mobility and flexibility in their everyday lives. Its impact on human life, economy, and social structure has been tremendous.
OPENS UP THE WORLD:
The car allowed people to move freely from place to place, and also opened up new work possibilities for them. This meant that people could apply for a job in another city and move to live there. It also gave them the opportunity to visit family and friends that lived in other places.
MANUFACTURERS & MODELS
The first factory-made cars were produced in central Europe and Germany during the late 19th century, but it was Henry Ford in America who perfected mass production techniques that made these vehicles affordable for the average American. These techniques revolutionized industrial manufacturing and made the automobile a common sight on our highways, streets, and byways in the United States.
ENGINES AND SYSTEMS
The internal combustion engine, invented by Dutch scientist Christiaan Huygens in the late 1600s, powers most modern automobiles. It is a complex set of semi-independent systems, including pistons, cylinders, fuel tubes, and valves. Each of these systems has its own unique function, but they all interact in order to make the engine turn smoothly.
There are several types of engines: four-cylinder, six-cylinder, eight-cylinder, and 12-cylinder. The number of cylinders in an engine depends on the size of the automobile, as well as its power requirements. The engine also has different types of lubricants and cooling fluids that help to keep the parts running smoothly.
Chassis, Wheels & Tires
The wheels and tires are important for the automobile’s handling and stability. They help to maintain contact with the road surface, which in turn improves acceleration and reduces fuel consumption. They are also used to support the body of the automobile and provide traction when the vehicle is on slopes or bumpy terrain.
Suspension and Braking
A suspension system consists of springs and shock absorbers that support the chassis on both sides. Shock absorbers are especially useful for the front of the automobile, where they can dampen sudden movements such as those caused by a dip in the road. Most automobiles today have independent front and rear suspension, which improves handling and the overall safety of the vehicle.
These systems are part of the vehicle’s chassis, which also includes the body, which provides passenger safety by providing structural support and offering space for storage. The body is welded or stamped out of steel, aluminum, or plastic, and it serves as the base for the various other systems.
Thousands of individual parts are needed to make the automobile run. Much like the human circulatory system, each part is arranged in an intricate network that allows it to work together and minimize noise and pollution.
The most significant changes to the automobile occurred in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, with the introduction of gas-powered vehicles that provided a more efficient form of transportation for people. The automobile also became an important tool for the government, allowing it to construct roads and highways across the nation.