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Old 12-06-2012, 08:37 AM
Bandem Bandem is offline
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Location: United States
Join Date: Aug 2012
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Mein Auto: BMW
Originally Posted by JimD1 View Post
I didn't read the whole thing but it seems OK. There is a far easier explanation of the two terms, however. Torque is just rotational force. It takes torque to spin the wheels against load. As long as you have more torque than the resistance, the vehicle moves. An 18 wheeler needs a lot of torque to get the load moving. The diesel engines they use have many times more torque than they have hp.

To accelerate quickly we need to do work quickly. In physics, work is defined as force times distance. The rate at which work is done is power. Our electric companies measure power in watts and kilowatts (thousands of watts). Watts and hp both measure power. 1 horsepower is defined as 33,000 lb-ft/min and is equivilent to almost 746W.

It makes a lot of sense to me that what makes us accelerate more quickly is not force but the rate at which work is done. That is why hp is more important than torque for acceleration.

Thats true, but somebody with little understanding reading this will make no real-world connection from that explanation and still won't understand. What you wrote has been written all over the internet and its not explaining the significance in a realistic way that a person can relate to. Before I understood the topics I wrote about, I read dozens of explanations very similar to that and it absolutely did nothing to help my understanding. In fact I ended those articles with more questions than answers.
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