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Car Suspsension



Ever since the earliest days of the car, suspension systems have been in use to keep the ride comfortable. Seeing as how commonplace it is for cars to have good suspension nowadays, we often take for granted just what these systems do to make our daily that much more comfortable. There are many different kinds of suspension, almost every kind involves a sort of spring. The earliest system to be used in cars was a simple spring on the frame connecting to steering frame, allowing for some amount of movement inside the car. Another type of suspension was the "leaf spring" suspension, which consisted of multiple layers of metal beams laid out flat, with the one above it being slightly larger than the one below. This acted as a normal spring physically, but it was able to hold a much larger load, and as such many large trucks and even tanks used this type of suspension. Even today, many different types of heavy vehicles use this type of suspension, which is considerably more complicated to produce than a spring style suspension. The systems used on most modern cars today is a combination of a spring and a "dampener". The spring is what allows for movement of the axle, and the dampener slows down the bouncing. If there is no dampener, then the car would bounce all over the place, since the springs would simply oscillate back and forth. The dampeners slow down the movement, essentially adding a frictional force to the oscillation. This allows for the oscillations to stop very quickly, coming to rest back at the center. The combination of the two components allows for the car to not only mostly keep the interior level across uneven terrain, but also allows for the car's wheels to maintain traction while driving. Another type of suspension is magnetic, which uses electromagnets in replacement of the spring, allowing for control over the height of the suspension. The reason this suspension isn't very common is that it is expensive to implement, and mostly trivial unless you want to raise and lower your car a few inches, for whatever reason. The magnets act the same way the spring does, pushing back as the axle rotates up and down. We often don't think about how well these systems maintain the comfortable ride on our way to work or school.


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