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A transmission or gearbox uses gear ratios to be able to supply torque and speed conversions from one rotating power source to another. "Transmission" refers to the whole drive train which comprises, prop shaft, gearbox, clutch, differential and final drive shafts. Transmissions are most commonly utilized in motor vehicles. The transmission changes the output of the internal combustion engine so as to drive the wheels. These engines should work at a high rate of rotational speed, something that is not suitable for stopping, starting or slower travel. The transmission raises torque in the process of decreasing the higher engine speed to the slower wheel speed. Transmissions are even used on fixed machines, pedal bikes and anywhere rotational speed and rotational torque need change.

Single ratio transmissions exist, and they work by altering the speed and torque of motor output. Many transmissions have many gear ratios and could switch between them as their speed changes. This gear switching can be done manually or automatically. Reverse and forward, or directional control, may be supplied too.

In motor vehicles, the transmission is frequently attached to the crankshaft of the engine. The transmission output travels via the driveshaft to one or more differentials and this process drives the wheels. A differential's most important purpose is to alter the rotational direction, even though, it can even provide gear reduction as well.

Torque converters, power transmission as well as other hybrid configurations are other alternative instruments used for torque and speed change. Traditional gear/belt transmissions are not the only device presented.

Gearboxes are referred to as the simplest transmissions. They provide gear reduction usually in conjunction with a right angle change in the direction of the shaft. Often gearboxes are utilized on powered agricultural machines, otherwise known as PTO equipment. The axial PTO shaft is at odds with the common need for the powered shaft. This shaft is either vertical, or horizontally extending from one side of the implement to another, which depends on the piece of machine. Silage choppers and snow blowers are examples of more complicated equipment that have drives providing output in many directions.

The type of gearbox utilized in a wind turbine is much more complex and larger compared to the PTO gearboxes found in farm equipment. These gearboxes convert the slow, high torque rotation of the turbine into the quicker rotation of the electrical generator. Weighing up to quite a few tons, and depending on the size of the turbine, these gearboxes usually have 3 stages to be able to accomplish a complete gear ratio beginning from 40:1 to more than 100:1. In order to remain compact and in order to distribute the massive amount of torque of the turbine over more teeth of the low-speed shaft, the first stage of the gearbox is normally a planetary gear. Endurance of these gearboxes has been an issue for some time.

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