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Differential Gearbox in Automobile


 Introduction

• What is gear?

• Gear types

• What is differential?

 History

 Function description

 Types of gear box

• Sliding Mesh Gear box

• Constant Mesh Gear Box

• Synchromesh Gear Box

• Epicyclic Gear Box

 Application of diffential gear box in automobile

 Differntial & transication

 Introduction

• What is gear?

Gear is a toothed wheels .main function of gear is transmitting motion&


“a friction wheel with the teeth cut on it is known as toothed wheeel

Or gear.”

 The gear (or cog, or sprocket) in its most basic form is a flat circular
object that has teeth cut into the edge of it.
Fig-1 gear

• Types of gear

1. Spur gear

2. Bevel gear

3. Spiral gear
Fig-2 types of gear

• What is differntial?

“The differential is a device that splits the engine torque two ways,
allowing each output to spin at a different speed. “

Fig-4 d/gearbox


• 1050 BC–771 BC: The Book of Song (which itself was written between 502
and 557 A.D.) makes the assertion that the South Pointing Chariot, which
uses a differential gear, was invented during the Western Zhou Dynasty in
• 227 – 239 AD – Despite doubts from fellow ministers at court, Ma Jun from
the Kingdom of Wei in China invents the first historically verifiable South
Pointing Chariot, which provided cardinal direction as a non-magnetic,
mechanized compass.
• 658, 666 AD – two Chinese Buddhist monks and engineers create South
Pointing Chariots for Emperor Tenji of Japan.
• 1027, 1107 AD – Documented Chinese reproductions of the South Pointing
Chariot by Yan Su and then Wu Deren, which described in detail the
mechanical functions and gear ratios of the device much more so than earlier
Chinese records.
• 1720 – Joseph Williamson uses a differential gear in a clock.
• 1810 – Rudolph Ackermann of Germany invents a four-wheel steering
system for carriages, which some later writers mistakenly report as a
• 1827 – modern automotive differential patented by watchmaker Onésiphore
Pecqueur (1792–1852) of the Conservatoire des Arts et Métiers in France
for use on a steam cart.
• 1832 – Richard Roberts of England patents 'gear of compensation', a
differential for road locomotives.
• 1876 – James Starley of Coventry invents chain-drive differential for use on
bicycles; invention later used on automobiles by Karl Benz.
• 1897 – first use of differential on an Australian steam car by David Shearer.
• 1913 – Packard introduces the spiral-gear differential, which cuts gear noise.
• 1926 – Packard introduces the hypoid differential, which enables the
propeller shaft and its hump in the interior of the car to be lowered.
• 1958 – Vernon Gleasman patents the Torsen dual-drive differential, a type
of limited slip differential that relies solely on the action of gearing instead
of a combination of clutches and gears.

Function descriptoin

A cutaway drawing of a car's rear axle, showing the crown wheel and pinion of the
final drive, and the smaller differential gears

The following description of a differential applies to a "traditional" rear-wheel-

drive car or truck with an "open" or limited slip differential:
Torque is supplied from the engine, via the transmission, to a drive shaft (British
term: 'propeller shaft', commonly and informally abbreviated to 'prop-shaft'), which
runs to the final drive unit and contains the differential. A spiral bevel pinion gear
takes its drive from the end of the propeller shaft, and is encased within the
housing of the final drive unit. This meshes with the large spiral bevel ring gear,
known as the crown wheel. The crown wheel and pinion may mesh in hypoid
orientation, not shown. The crown wheel gear is attached to the differential carrier
or cage, which contains the 'sun' and 'planet' wheels or gears, which are a cluster of
four opposed bevel gears in perpendicular plane, so each bevel gear meshes with
two neighbours, and rotates counter to the third, that it faces and does not mesh
with. The two sun wheel gears are aligned on the same axis as the crown wheel
gear, and drive the axle half shafts connected to the vehicle's driven wheels. The
other two planet gears are aligned on a perpendicular axis which changes
orientation with the ring gear's rotation. In the two figures shown above, only one
planet gear (green) is illustrated, however, most automotive applications contain
two opposing planet gears.
Fig -6 rear wheel drive

 The differential is found on all modern cars and trucks, and also in many
all-wheel-drive (full-time four-wheel-drive) vehicles. These all-wheel-
drive vehicles need a differential between each set of drive wheels, and
they need one between the front and the back wheels as well, because the
front wheels travel a different distance through a turn than the rear
Fig-6 all wheel drive

Part-time four-wheel-drive systems don't have a differential between the

front and rear wheels; instead, they are locked together so that the front
and rear wheels have to turn at the same average speed. This is why these
vehicles are hard to turn on concrete when the four-wheel-drive system is

Other differential designs employ different numbers of planet gears, depending on durability
requirements. As the differential carrier rotates, the changing axis orientation of the planet gears
imparts the motion of the ring gear to the motion of the sun gears by pushing on them rather than
turning against them (that is, the same teeth stay in the same mesh or contact position), but
because the planet gears are not restricted from turning against each other, within that motion,
the sun gears can counter-rotate relative to the ring gear and to each other under the same force
(in which case the same teeth do not stay in contact).

Thus, for example, if the car is making a turn to the right, the main crown wheel may make 10
full rotations. During that time, the left wheel will make more rotations because it has further to
travel, and the right wheel will make fewer rotations as it has less distance to travel. The sun
gears (which drive the axle half-shafts) will rotate in opposite directions relative to the ring gear
by, say, 2 full turns each (4 full turns relative to each other), resulting in the left wheel making 12
rotations, and the right wheel making 8 rotations.

The rotation of the crown wheel gear is always the average of the rotations of the side sun gears.
This is why, if the driven roadwheels are lifted clear of the ground with the engine off, and the
drive shaft is held (say leaving the transmission 'in gear', preventing the ring gear from turning
inside the differential), manually rotating one driven roadwheel causes the opposite roadwheel to
rotate in the opposite direction by the same amount.
When the vehicle is traveling in a straight line, there will be no differential
movement of the planetary system of gears other than the minute movements
necessary to compensate for slight differences in wheel diameter, undulations in
the road (which make for a longer or shorter wheel path), etc.
Why Need a Differential
Car wheels spin at different speeds, especially when turning. that each wheel
travels a different distance through the turn, and that the inside wheels travel a
shorter distance than the outside wheels. Since speed is equal to the distance
traveled divided by the time it takes to go that distance, the wheels that travel a
shorter distance travel at a lower speed. Also note that the front wheels travel a
different distance than the rear wheels.

For the non-driven wheels on your car -- the front wheels on a rear-wheel
drive car, the back wheels on a front-wheel drive car -- this is not an issue. There is
no connection between them, so they spin independently. But the driven wheels are
linked together so that a single engine and transmission can turn both wheels. If
your car did not have a differential, the wheels would have to be locked together,
forced to spin at the same speed. This would make turning difficult and hard on
your car: For the car to be able to turn, one tire would have to slip. With modern
tires and concrete roads, a great deal of force is required to make a tire slip. That
force would have to be transmitted through the axle from one wheel to another,
putting a heavy strain on the axle components.

Three main job of differantial:

• To aim the engine power at the wheels
• To act as the final gear reduction in the vehicle, slowing the
rotational speed of the transmission one final time before it hits the wheels
• To transmit the power to the wheels while allowing them to rotate
at different speeds (This is the one that earned the differential its name.)
Types of gear box

1. Sliding Mesh Gear box

1. main drive gear

2. counter shaft
3. main shaft
4. I gear
5. II gear
6. III gear
7. top speed engaging dogs

 In this type of gear box, gears are engaged and disengaged by sliding of the
gear wheels.
 Gear wheels on the main shaft engage with gear wheels on the lay shaft or
counter shaft by sliding themselves.

Fig-5 sliding mesh gearing

2. Constant Mesh Gear Box

1. I speed gear
2. II speed gear
3. main shaft
4. III speed gear
5. top and III speed engaging dogs
6. top gear
7. primary shaft or main drive gear
8. counter shaft/cluster gear
 In this case, gear wheels on the main shaft and lay shafts are constantly
engaged and the rotary motion is transmitted to the main shaft by
engaging dog clutches.

Advantages of Constant mesh gearbox over Sliding mesh Gearbox:

 Helical and herringbone gear can be employed in these gearboxes and,
therefore, constant mesh gearboxes are quieter.
 Synchronizing devices can be easily incorporated.
 Since the gears are engaged by dog clutches, if any damage occurs while
engaging the gears, the dog unit members get damaged and not the gear
 By suitably designing the dog clutch, the gear changing can be made easier.
 Damage to the dog clutch is less likely because all the teeth are engaged at a

3.Synchromesh Gear Box

1. I speed gear
2. II speed gear
3. main shaft
4. outer engaging unit
5. inner engaging unit
6. top gear engaging teeth
7. main drive gear
8. top gear synchronizing cones
9. counter shaft
The green cone-shaped area is the syncho collar. It's attached to the red dog
gear and slides with it.
As it approaches the helical gear, it makes friction contact with the conical
hole.The more contact it makes, the more the speed of the output shaft and
free-spinning helical gear are equalized before the teeth engage.

4 Epicyclic Gear Box

 In such gear boxes epicyclic gear trains are employed to get the various gear
 The characteristic feature of an epicyclic gearing is that at least one wheel
not only rotates about its own axis but also rotates about some other axis.

Eplicle gear train

Active differntial
A relatively new technology is the electronically-controlled 'active differential'. An
electronic control unit (ECU) uses inputs from multiple sensors, including
yarwrate, steering input angle, and lateral acceleration – and adjusts the
distribution of trorque to compensate for undesirable handling behaviours like
understeer. Active differentials used to play a large role in the World Rally
Championship, but in the 2006 season the FIA has limited the use of active
differentials only to those drivers who have not competed in the World Rally
Championship in the last five years.

Fully integrated active differentials are used on the Ferrari F430, Mitsubishi
Lancer Evolution, and on the rear wheels in the Acura RL. A version manufactured
by ZF is also being offered on the latest Audi S4 and Audi A4[3].

The second constraint of the differential is passive – it is actuated by the friction

kinematics chain through the ground. The difference in torque on the roadwheels
and tires (caused by turns or bumpy ground) drives the second degree of freedom,
(overcoming the torque of inner friction) to equalise the driving torque on the tires.
The sensitivity of the differential depends on the inner friction through the second
degree of freedom. All of the differentials (so called “active” and “passive”) use
clutches and brakes for restricting the second degree of freedom, so all suffer from
the same disadvantage – decreased sensitivity to a dynamically changing
environment. The sensitivity of the ECU controlled differential is also limited by
the time delay caused by sensors and the response time of the actuators.
Differentials and Traction
The open differential always applies the same amount of torque to each wheel.
There are two factors that determine how much torque can be applied to the
wheels: equipment and traction. In dry conditions, when there is plenty of traction,
the amount of torque applied to the wheels is limited by the engine and gearing; in
a low traction situation, such as when driving on ice, the amount of torque is
limited to the greatest amount that will not cause a wheel to slip under those
conditions. So, even though a car may be able to produce more torque, there needs
to be enough traction to transmit that torque to the ground. If you give the car more
gas after the wheels start to slip, the wheels will just spin faster.
On Thin Ice
If you've ever driven on ice, you may know of a trick that makes acceleration
easier: If you start out in second gear, or even third gear, instead of first, because of
the gearing in the transmission you will have less torque available to the wheels.
This will make it easier to accelerate without spinning the wheels.
Now what happens if one of the drive wheels has good traction, and the other one
is on ice? This is where the problem with open differentials comes in.
Remember that the open differential always applies the same torque to both
wheels, and the maximum amount of torque is limited to the greatest amount that
will not make the wheels slip. It doesn't take much torque to make a tire slip on ice.
And when the wheel with good traction is only getting the very small amount of
torque that can be applied to the wheel with less traction, your car isn't going to
move very much.
Off Road
Another time open differentials might get you into trouble is when you are driving
off-road. If you have a four-wheel drive truck, or an SUV, with an open differential
on both the front and the back, you could get stuck. Now, remember -- as we
mentioned on the previous page, the open differential always applies the same
torque to both wheels. If one of the front tires and one of the back tires comes off
the ground, they will just spin helplessly in the air, and you won't be able to move
at all.
The solution to these problems is the limited slip differential (LSD), sometimes
called positraction. Limited slip differentials use various mechanisms to allow
normal differential action when going around turns. When a wheel slips, they
allow more torque to be transferred to the non-slipping wheel.
The next few sections will detail some of the different types of limited slip
differentials, including the clutch-type LSD, the viscous coupling, locking
differential and Torsen differential.