Category Archives: Automotive

New Automotive Technology

More than 100 Americans die every day in automobile accidents. In fact, over the last century, more have perished due to car crashes in the United States than in all the wars the country has fought. Although this is a horrible statistic, the 2006 Traffic Safety Annual Assessment from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported the largest U.S. decline in terms of both number and percentage since 1992. This vigorous reduction is a goal that automotive engineers are striving to continue year after year.

Innovative automotive engineering can make cars safer, but at the same time, drivers must also strive for improvements. Many motorists at one time or another can recall either almost being killed on the road, stories of road-rage or helplessly observing an accident happen right in front of their very eyes. According to a 1999 Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) special, Escape! Because Accidents Happen – Car Crash, the roads are, indeed, a major threat. What’s more, an automotive magazine recently published statistics which reveal that more than 95% of these accidents involve some degree of (poor) driver behavior.

Indeed, some Americans may not rank amongst the best of the world’s drivers, but it’s not entirely due to operator error, either. Poor roadway maintenance, roadway design and equipment failure have also been referenced as top factors affecting crashes. Frequently, driving behavior interacts with at least one of these other factors to produce a grave situation.

Aside from rectifying the paradox that the majority of drivers consider themselves more skillful than their counterparts, better engineering and innovative automotive technology could help improve roadway safety. Today, it is well understood that properly deployed cushions of air (i.e., airbags) can assist in saving lives. In much the same way, in the previous generation, the advantages of good restraining devices were discovered. Car navigation systems particularly aid the directionally challenged – and, what about using those fancy “carputers” for technology to help make our roads safer? Automotive engineers are answering this need by developing “active safety systems.” These systems can help reduce the number of crashes and minimize the effects of crashes that do occur.

Automotive safety is taking on a new role as active safety components are beginning to gain ground as technology and development improve. Some suppliers are developing specialized active and passive safety systems. These include forward collision and lane departure warning, electronic stability control, pre-crash mitigation, side alert systems, active night vision and road sign and pedestrian recognition – all of which do about what they sound like they should.

Imagine how different driving could be if motorists were warned before they were about to sideswipe a fellow road warrior, alerted before missing a stop sign or even just able to see what’s ahead at night. Such technologies could prove paramount to safety as humankind steps into an era of even more cars, faster speeds and the repercussions of recent population explosions.

A European study reported that 80% of drivers involved in accidents believed the other party could have done something to prevent the mishap. But what if everybody just stopped blaming each other and became better drivers? What if existing technology was utilized and built upon to reduce the number of traffic fatalities? In the end, determining fault matters more if something can be done about it, such as discovering ways to prevent other collisions.

History of Chevrolet Cars

The history of Chevrolet is well documented. Before being acquired by General Motors (GM) in 1918, the vision of Chevrolet began in 1911 by Louis Chevrolet. The advancements of Chevrolet were apparent as they went head-to-head with Ford’s Model T with the invention of the Model D, a three-speed transmission, V8 engine powerhouse that was ahead of its class at the time.

“Introduces innovation”

Innovations soon became well-known models and personal favorites among not just American drivers, but those around the world as well. The Chevrolet tradition spread from generation to generation, resulting in a number of advancements to trucks, sports cars, and the classic sedans.

Here are just a few of the ways Chevy made its mark on the American landscape, a move that continues to this day.

1. There’s a First For Everything: Things we take for granted now and see as a requirement more than an option happens with cars. With Chevrolet, they are a company that grounded its namesake in firsts. Some of their early models adopted new ways to make the car better and more accessible. As Chevy.com states in it’s company history bio, the Series C Classic Six model was one of the first cars to carry electric starters and headlamps. And as the years continued, Chevy models would go on to introduce and refine elements of the car that have become standards for today’s models. Things like anti-lock brakes, tweaked fuel injector systems and stability control were put to the test of some of their basic models, when at the time, these features were reserved for luxury lineups.

2. Performance and Recognition: It’s obvious that automakers rely on popular models to carry them through for generations upon generations. Chevy is no different. Their mark on iconic sports cars like the Corvette and savvy approach to high-performance cars like the Camaro is one thing. Their approach and commitment to trucks is the next step. The Silverado has made its mark among truck lovers and those who rely on trucks for cargo, performance and dependability, things that can be lavished upon the Silverado. It’s won numerous awards for the previously mentioned criteria, adding safety marks to the list as well. Chevy has been able to highlight what their drivers want, offering up models with best-in fuel economy, towing capabilities and best, pure-thrill rides for the driving enthusiast in all of us.

100 Years of Automotive Innovations

For the past 100 years, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway has been the home for some of auto racing’s most thrilling moments. Although the news has centered on the oval action, the behind-the-scenes activity has generated its own kind of excitement. In their efforts to gain the best speed possible, the mechanics and engineers working on the race cars have created innovations that have transitioned from Pit Row onto the highway.

In fact, the first Indianapolis 500 Mile Race in 1911 witnessed the initiation of the rear view mirror. At the time, a driver had an accompanying mechanic in the car, who would check on other drivers trailing the car. Driver Ray Harroun had a different idea. Instead of this extra passenger, he decided he could see the drivers himself if a mirror was bolted onto the front of his car. The weight of an extra passenger would be eliminated and then decrease wind resistance and increase the possibilities of greater speed. The idea helped Harroun become the first Indy 500 winner. Eventually the rear view mirror also sparked auto manufacturers’ interest. Today, it is standard equipment on every car.

Generally these early races were both testing grounds for new products and promotional tools. Manufacturers, such as Firestone Rubber Tire Company , could show the public how well its products performed. In the early to mid 1900’s, Firestone manufactured the same tires for both the track and the highway. The idea was to impress racing fans, who would then buy Firestone tires for their own vehicles. “Race on Sunday, Sell on Monday,” became Firestone’s business practice.

The Firestone tradition became entrenched with the 1925 Speedway win by Peter DePaolo. On the new Firestone balloon tires, DePaolo averaged 101.13 miles per hour without tire trouble. In fact, every one of the top ten racers had the balloon tires. Firestone’s triumph convinced the public that the new rubber balloon tires lasted longer. Plus, the tires proved to provide a more comfortable ride.

The balloon tires were only the start of manufacturers’ innovative efforts at the Indy Speedway. Through the years, they continued to improve tires, engines, and car bodies. Many of these innovations were then transferred to the public’s vehicles.

Today the racing industry is highly specialized with car mechanics and parts devoted strictly to the race car. However, the practice of promoting the best that a manufacturer can offer is still an important element of the Indianapolis 500 tradition.

Driving Conveniently With the Help of Smart Automotive

We live in the digital age where technology makes our lives easier each day. Advance medical equipments are created to help doctors treat patients, kitchen tools are innovated to make it easier for home makers, and cars are made smarter to make driving easier for humans.

Automotive electronics paved the way for helpful features like anti-lock braking systems (ABS) and automatic weather adjustments which makes driving safer and more comfortable.

Car manufacturers spend about two thousand dollars in automotive electronics for every car that comes out of the assembly line. These automotive electronics transform the car into a vehicle with better performing engine, more adaptive entertainment systems, and safety features that are far more superior than its predecessors.

Automotive Electronics of the Modern Car

o Control Area Network or CAN – There are several computers that run a modern car. The CAN is a network of computers that play vital roles in the different functions of the engine and its peripherals. The CAN serves as the bridge for the different computers so they can communicate with one another so everything are well coordinated. CAN controls the functions like cruise control, engine management, and the ABS.

o Fuel Efficiency- automotive electronics can save a car owner hundreds of dollars in fuel consumption. This is done through the EFI or Electronic Fuel Injection technology which ensures that the engine’s fuel consumption is at its optimal. In hybrid cars, a driver can easily switch from using gas and electronic power supply to run the vehicle.

o Safety Devices- Most safety system is controlled by automotive electronics. Devices like the Acceleration Slip Regulation, Traction Control, Electronic Stability and Dynamic Steering wheel ensure the safety of the driver and the passengers. The simple but complicated timing of airbags during a road collision is also controlled by advanced automotive systems.

o Added Features- Some cars today can even park themselves without any assistance from the driver. All the calculations are done by a computer making sure the car will not hit anything by making references to other cars and different objects in its surrounding.

One cannot imagine the evolution that took place with automotive electronics. The Apollo 11 which landed on the moon ran on a memory which is 150 kilobytes only. The sound systems of our cars today are running on 500 kilobytes of memory to ensuring our entertainment pleasure. Automotive electronics have gone far beyond entertainment and enhanced modern day vehicles in terms of safety, efficiency, and convenience.

The automotive industry projects billions of investments and sales in developing cars that are smarter, more fuel efficient and more environment-friendly in the future. Modern cars can be the answer to alleviate the adverse condition of the environment and the rising price of fuel all over the globe.

Cars are being developed to scan the traffic, the road, and all hazards so it can drive itself while the driver can do anything that he wants while in motion. The future cars can think for themselves with the aid of advanced automotive electronics. In that way, driving will be more than getting from one place to another.

BMW Provides Excellence

The Bavarian Motor Works company is headquartered in Munich, Germany and represents German engineering at its finest. BMW is the parent company of Rolls Royce and is the owner of the MINI brand. Since the company’s inception in 1916, the company has been a standard bearer for luxury and performance, a tradition that has carried through two world wars, the present and promises to carry on into the future.

British Motor Works began this storied history with the production of aircraft engines rather than car engines. The first noteworthy engine produced was the BMW IIIa inline-6 aviation engine. The success of this engine late in World War 1 along with significant advances made in a number of other prototype inline-6 engines is said to have influenced the design logo for BMW. The circular blue and white BMW logo is said portray the movement of an airplane propeller, to signify the white blades cutting through the blue sky. It was officially adopted by BMW in 1929. Whatever the significance on the logo, after World War 1, the Versailles Armistice Treaty was enacted and BMW was forced to cease production of aircraft motors. They turned instead to production of motorcycles and car engines. The thirties brought a new era to Germany and rearmament began in earnest. The treaty was dissolved and BMW began producing aircraft for the Luftwaffe. Several successful aircraft engine designs were produced by BMW during World War 2 including the BMW 801 air cooled radial engine and the revolutionary 003 axial flow turbo jet.

Although BMW had gone back to producing aircraft engines, it never completely dropped the motorcycle and car engine line. By 1959, they were beginning to experience financial difficulties and was contemplating halting production of car engines altogether. A last ditch attempt to salvage the automotive was decided upon, and the decision was made to explore the economy car market. The venture enjoyed enough success to put the manufacturer back on its feet.

Gradually BMW began to move toward the luxury car market and by 1980 its success in the arena had been established. BMW had established itself as a car manufacturer known for high end quality, as well as indulgence and was now a solid rival to its chief competitor, Mercedes-Benz.

BMW acquired the Rover brand in 1994 in order to compete in the SUV market; however it was unable to make any progress in halting the sliding sales of the Rover. BMW broke up the Rover Company and sold the MG division to a Phoenix consortium while Ford acquired the Rover label.

BMW retained the rights to the classic mini and subsequently began a redesign of the car. The new MINI, spelled with all capital letters to distinguish it from the classic mini, was introduced in 2001 and was an instant success. The popularity of the MINI in the United States shows that BMW has the ability and vision to move outside the boundaries of current car production and promises to introduce some of the most exciting cars seen to date. As the company prepares to celebrate its centennial anniversary, one can only imagine what it may think of next.

The 5 Best Engineered

While the cars we drive to work and to the shops are themselves fine examples of automotive engineering, for the pinnacle of technical excellence you need to turn to racing and sports cars in their many forms. Check out five examples of the very best.

The Red Bull RB7 racing car. In the 2011 Formula One season, this was the dominant car, by far the best racing car on the circuit, winning both the individual driver’s title and also the constructor’s championship.

The RB7’s achievements were the result of continual development and innovation such as the introduction of its exhaust-blown diffuser, the addition of floor holes and special electronic engine maps that squeezed every ounce of power from the car’s 2.4 litre engine. Often these technical improvements had to be refined in the one to two week window between races.

The Bugatti Veyron Supersport. In just a few short years, with its stunning styling and awesome performance, this magnificent road car has become a legend. For those brave enough and with the space to do so, the Veyron can unleash a top speed of no less than 267mph, reaching the 60 mile an hour mark in just 2.4 seconds from a standing start. Recognised as the fastest road car ever made, to buy one of these phenomenal vehicles you would have to part with £1.6 million!

The McClaren F1 road car is widely regarded as the ultimate super car, eclipsing the likes of legendary names such as Ferrari and Lamborghini. It first went into production some twenty years ago and some say it is still the most beautiful car ever built. With a top speed of just 241mph it may not match the Veyron for pace, but with a price tag as high as £2.5 million, when it comes to cost it leaves the Veyron standing.

The Audi R18 e-tron Quattro is the first of a new breed of hybrid that is making inroads into the world of motor sport, this year winning the world’s most famous endurance car race – the Le Mans 24 Hour. To achieve success in a race that can last for over 3,000 miles, Audi engineers and drivers have to balance the quest for speed with the careful management of fuel, tyres, engine, transmission and brakes.

The Citroen DS3 WRC may be the nearest amongst this list to the vehicle that you and I drive, but in the hands of its driver, eight time world rally champion, Sébastien Loeb, it’s anything but. Unlike the other cars, which are designed to be driven on the road or flat race circuits, the DS3 has to combine speed, endurance and robustness to withstand the battering it gets from hurtling along narrow unmade forest tracks, being flung round hairpin bends, and the impact of landing after taking off over hump-back bridges!

Automotive Racing History

Does the thought of watching a great car race make your heart accelerate? Do you live to enjoy the thrill of speed? Maybe you just appreciate the design of great sports cars. Whatever the case may be, you can be sure that somewhere along the line, you have heard about or seen some great and historic Ford race cars!

Automotive racing has been a very popular sport ever since the first automobiles were designed over 100 years ago. Actually, it was because of car racing that many of today’s automakers exist. Automotive designers would try to create faster and more efficient vehicles by testing their ideas in races against other designers. Henry Ford entered one such event with his unique, early “Model T” design and won, investing the prize winnings into the company that would become the Ford Motor Company. From this humble beginning, many historic Ford race cars would be born.

Ford racing would become a company to contend with as they produced one winning design after another. Here are just some of the historic Ford race cars:

*In 1903, Barney Oldfield drove the Ford 999 to victory at the Indiana Fairgrounds, and set a new speed record of 60 mph.

*In 1909, the Ford Model T shows its endurance as it wins a cross-country race from New York to Seattle.

*In 1949, the first national NASCAR race was won by Ford driver Jim Roper in a new car model called the Lincoln.

In the 1960’s, Ford would reach the height of racing, as they would produce several cutting edge designs, including:

*In 1963, the Ford-Lotus design would win the Milwaukee 200, driven by Jim Clark.

*In 1964, Ford would introduce a new style of Indy car engine known as the DOHC V-8.

*In 1966, the Ford model Mark II’s would place 1st, 2nd and 3rd in the 24 hours of Lemans race.

*In 1967, Ford would introduce a new engine in the Dutch Grand Prix, called the Ford-Cosworth DFV V-8.

*In 1968, Ford would introduce a sporty design of its popular Ford Mustang by showcasing the Cobra Jet Mustang at the NRHA Winternationals, winning its first event.

The 1980’s would see a resurgence of the popular Ford Mustang as the Miller Mustang would win two races in 1981. Ford would also become competitive with the Thunderbird model as driver Bill Elliott would win a record 11 NASCAR races in 1985. In 1988, Bill Elliott would continue winning in the Ford Thunderbird by taking the NASCAR Winston Cup championship.

Ford continues to produce new and innovative ideas as they design cars for the future. In the early 2000’s, the Ford Taurus model challenged the field, being driven by the Rousch racing team including some of today’s championship drivers like Carl Edwards and Kurt Busch. If the future is anything like the past, Ford will continue to produce many historic Ford race cars.

Ushering in a Revolution in Automotive HMI Design

Introduction

The increasing numbers of electronic systems in a car have ushered in a revolution which has transformed the car into a safe, luxurious and intelligent machine. One thing that has not changed however is the importance of human interaction with the car. This interaction defines the user experience and is a key marketing differentiation between different vehicles.

The systems measuring and tracking interactions of the user as well as providing feedback are collectively known as Automotive Human Machine Interface (HMI) systems. From the user’s perspective, this interaction maybe conscious – when he deliberately provides input to a system, or subconscious – when the system measures his intent without his knowledge.

Capacitive Sensing – Ushering in a revolution in Automotive HMI

Even with the inherent barriers in the adoption of new HMI technologies in the automotive environment, engineers are constantly trying to improve HMI systems to make them more intuitive, look cooler, and be more accurate. At the heart of this change are innovative human interaction sensing technologies which are enabling this evolution. One such technology is capacitive sensing which has revolutionized the design and implementation of HMI applications.

Very simply, a capacitive sensor is composed of a pair of adjacent electrodes.

When a human being (or any other conductive object) comes in proximity to these electrodes, there is additional capacitance between the electrodes and the object which can be measured to detect the object’s presence.

Using this technology, it is easy to build touch sensors acting as buttons, sliders, trackpads etc. Alternately capacitive sensing can also be used for proximity sensing where no contact is required between the sensor and the user’s body. This can be achieved by increasing the sensitivity of the sensors. Further, such sensors are non-line of sight; therefore, a single sensor is enough to detect approach in 3 dimensions.

Such a technology becomes even more powerful in conjunction with programmable mixed signal controllers. Such devices enable the measurement of capacitance intelligently enabling the detection of human proximity in terms of range, direction of approach, gesture recognition etc. They also enable the possibility of integrating other functions like controlling motors and LEDs to provide feedback to the user based on touch/proximity.

Center console design models:

The Brick Design Model

Center consoles have been traditionally designed using the brick design model. In this model, each center console component is a complete unit comprising of controls/switch panel as well as the actual electro mechanical box.

For example a center console is composed of a number of independent components comprising the HVAC, Audio, and Navigation units. Each individual component is a complete system comprising the controls, electronic components and mechanical actuators etc.

The limitations of such a design is that each system is developed in a silo, and the car manufacturer has only limited control in being able to provide a uniform look and feel. The designers also have limited freedom to design center consoles with restrictions on styling. There is also an increased cost adder to allow for tooling costs associated with additional grooves and harnesses. Due to an increased number of mechanical components, there is also an increased chance of failure.

The integrated design model

In the integrated design model, the control for all elements of the center console are unified into a single front panel with the actual electro-mechanical systems connected through a data bus. The distribution and integration of the control panel enables HMI designers with greater flexibility in styling as well as greater control over uniform look and feel. Such a design also reduces tooling charges and increases reliability. Because of integration and reduction of controls, such designs also reduce the total cost of systems.

The integrated design model is largely made possible because of capacitive touch sensing. Designers can integrate a flat panel with capacitive sensors, and have greater freedom to play around with curves thereby provide a better overall styling of front panels. Due to the reduced number of mechanical components and fewer grooves (which trap dust etc), such designs also enhance reliability and reduce system costs.

Revolutionizing Automobiles

Wheel has marked the era of innovation. With the furtherance of innovation cars & automobiles have come into existence. But at the same time men should not contaminate the environment because of their sheer innovation rather they should keep an attitude of gratitude towards the mother nature. There is no paradox held here that indiscriminate and prolonged innovation harm mother nature rather the mankind should find out the other way- eco-friendly automotives.

Truly that date marked the era of innovation when man first invented wheels. Gradually the day came when men were riding on automotives geared up by sophisticated engines and fuels. That was the turning point of man’s history and lives. Men kept on running with the rolling wheels and eventually the year 1769 became the date to remember which remind men that the inception of automotives was laid in this particular year. Men kept on taking the strides to meet the challenges heading and following them. The struggle was to make a better one which meet their needs and lifestyle. Different versions of automobiles came, made news and went away. That’s how technology manifest itself.

Men never became complacent otherwise the development in any sphere of the life could not have happened. They learnt to make progress with the rolling wheels and came up with something that marked the growth of the civilizations on the technical and analytical fronts. Yes the growth was conspicuous and the automotive industry felt the revolution. The revolution that sharpened the automotive parts for better efficiency is illustrated by the automobiles. History has witnessed the phase changes in the automotives with every new one replacing the defunct and obsolete one. That is how science grow by leaps and bounds.

The automotives are now on the way to achieving. Driven by high end engineering, today’s automotives reveal the man’s elevated thoughts technically and analytically. In every part of automotives the innovation can be clearly seen. The importance of automotive’s invention is so pronounced that there are different era that mark the difference in automotives that reigned over those years. Automotives not only meet your needs but also reflect your status. Evidently the more expensive automotives you have the more richer you are. Yes that’s the tag that is associated with automotives. The automotives glorify your status and lifestyle.

All the stuffs like ball joints, bushing kits, control arms and drag links have come into existence to accelerate the modernity of the automotives. These essential automotive parts are the heart and soul of the vehicles which keep the automotives in the alive state. The vehicles are now have become the substance of the commonalities. But the most important is how less they are going to pump out smoke into the atmosphere rather we should resort to CNG vehicles and the similar one. It is high time that we as a responsible citizen of the respective countries contemplate over the issue and come to an environment friendly conclusion. This path may lead us to drive eco-friendly automotives that do not harm anybody or to a lesser amount.

Lets save the mother nature and be obliged to her for the kindness and blessing she has showered on us. Resort to the eco-friendly automotives thereby enhancing innovation to the fullest as well as saving the environment from getting contaminated. Lets put our creativities and abilities to progress on both the aspects; making the latest of the designs in automotives and also saving the mother nature who is constantly saving us.

Engine Assemblies

Marshall Engines is an aftermarket automobile engine remanufacturing company. Founded by Norris Marshall in 1982, the brand started commercially remanufacturing engines for cars and light trucks. Currently, it specializes in remanufacturing car, light truck, diesel, high performance, marine and fleet engine assemblies-with the addition of other aftermarket automotive parts.

“Automotive racing history”

The brand has nearly 200 production offices and numerous sales personnel under its wing. With branches covering the northern America (from Mexico to Canada), the brand’s production capacity has a capability of remanufacturing 100 light truck, marine, commercial and high performance car engines per day.

The brand lives up to founder Marshall Norris’ vision of giving “customers quality remanufactured engines at a fair price.” That is why Marshall Engines is known for being the first company to adapt QS-9000 quality standards created by Ford, Chrysler, and General Motors. The brand is also known for being a leader when it comes to introducing the world’s first dyno-tested and documented production of remanufactured engines.

With the quality of replacement engines that the brand produces, juxtaposed to the affordable value of its prices, Marshall Engines’ customers have garnered over four billion miles worth on the two hundred thousand remanufactured engines that the brand has made since 1982.