The differential gear can be said as the landmark in the automotive industry. Without its presence, the vehicles may be fine on straight roads but face difficulty while turning. The left and the right wheel of the cars rotate at the same speed in straight roads than in corners.
Therefore, the differential is a type of gear train inclusive of three shafts and has the property that the angular velocity of the single shaft is the average of the others.
While turning at the corners, the inside wheel takes the shorter route while rotating around a tight radius. Here it requires being slow down relative to rotating on the straight road. On another hand, the outside wheel travels a longer route and it needs to travel quickly to cover the longer distance.
The differential gear help to maintain this speed difference. It allows the wheels to turn at different speed in the different direction of curves. Without the presence of differential, the car will skid badly and lead to accidents. Also, the wheels can get locked and no difference in the speeds is possible.
watch video on next page to understand the working of differential gears-
Design principle of Differential Gear
The structural design of the differential is similar to the principle of the sun and planetary gears. The pinion gear is within the casing and is free to rotate. The wheels of the car are in conjunction with the pinion gears and it sends the drive through the carrier, which rotates while the car is in motion.
While moving on the straight road, the planetary gears within the casing are stationary. The gears themselves experience the radial movement within the carrier they are in conjunction with. The gears begin to rotate in their individual axis while moving in corners while moving around within the differential carrier.
Role of Differential Gear
Differential gears provide the essential drive to car wheels.
The differential acts as a final gear reduction in the vehicle and tends to slow down the rotational speed of the transmission.
It successfully transmits power to the wheels at variable speeds
When do you need Differential Gears
The car wheels have a tendency to spin at different speeds, especially while turning. The inner and the outer wheel rotate at different speeds while turning. The differential gears tend to compensate the difference in the distance of the inner and outer wheel travel as your car goes round the corner. It prevents skidding of the car, balances at and helps in avoiding accidents.