Automatic transmission vehicles have a torque converter which is a kind of final drive mechanism with fluid coupling, which permits the engine to turn to some degree independent of the vehicle’s transmission. Presuming a very slow engine rotation, such as when the car is lazing at a traffic light, the aggregate torque delivered through the automotive torque converter is very negligible, so that keeps the car still just by applying a light pressure on the brake pedal. In a torque converter, the pump is typically connected with the engine flywheel. The input shaft of the transmission is connected with the turbine. While the vehicle is in gear, as the engine’s rotation increases, the torque is transmitted from the engine to the propeller shaft or input shaft by the movement of the fluid, thus driving the vehicle. So, the mechanism of the fluid coupling strongly resembles that of a mechanical clutch of a manual transmission vehicle.
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An automotive torque converter is a kind of hydraulic transmission which upsurges the torque of the vehicle by reducing its speed. It delivers a continuous deviation of ratio from high to low. The basic ability of a torque converter is to increase torque when there is a significant difference between output and input engine rotational speed; thus, it provides the same functionality of a lessening gear. An automotive transmission vehicle has no clutch that disconnects the transmission from the engine.
There is no physical interconnection between the rotor and the impeller and the torque is transferred by quality of the fluid inside the coupling. When the engine rotates the impeller, it transfers energy and velocity to the liquid, which is transformed into powered energy in the rotor which rotates it. The fluid trails in a locked circuit of movement from impeller to the rotor through an air gap which is at the outside periphery and again from rotor toward the impeller through the air gap which is at the internal periphery.
Automatic vehicle transmission system is one of the most advanced transmission system where mechanical efforts are reduced and different speeds are achieved automatically with the help of a torque converter. This automatic system is also called hydramatic transmission. It comprises an epicyclic gear arrangement and a torque converter.
One of the major trends driving the growth of the global automotive torque converter market is advancement in automotive torque converters technologies. Manufacturers are continuously trying to develop new ways and techniques to increase the operational efficiency of a torque converter. Reduction in weight and size, a bigger lock-up range, and advanced manufacturing processes, such as automated manufacturing, are some of the trends noticed in the advances of the torque converter.
The major driver of the automotive torque converter market is the increased demand for vehicles with automatic transmission. Automatic transmission vehicles, particularly passenger vehicles, are gaining momentum in the global passenger vehicle market. Majority of customers are opting for automatic transmission vehicles in the luxury and premium vehicle segments. Moreover, smaller cars with automatic transmission are also registering high demand. Automatic transmission vehicles are generally known for hassle-free driving, and the congested stop-and-go driving conditions are pushing customers to select automatic transmission vehicles.
Europe was the market leader in the automotive torque converter market in the year 2015 followed by North America and Asia Pacific. The Asia Pacific region is expected to expand at the highest rate. This growth of the market in Asia Pacific can be credited to increased production of luxury and high end vehicles along with increasing demand for small passenger automatic transmission cars which has empowered the deployment of torque converter systems in this region.
The major players in this industry are Continental AG (Germany), Robert Bosch GmbH (Germany), Delphi Automotive PLC (U.K), Telit Communications PLC (Italy), and Schaeffler Technologies AG & Co. KG (Germany) among others.