The variety of transmissions available in the market today has grown exponentially in the last 15 years, all while increasing in complexity. The result is that we are actually dealing with a varied amount of transmission types including manual, typical automatic, automated manual, dual clutch, constantly variable, split power and real EV.
Until extremely recently, automotive vehicle manufacturers largely had two types of transmitting to select from: planetary automatic with torque converter or conventional manual. Today, however, the volume of options avaiable demonstrates the changes seen across the industry.
That is also illustrated by the many different types of vehicles now being manufactured for the market. And not just conventional vehicles, but also all electrical and hybrid automobiles, with each type needing different driveline architectures.
The traditional development process involved designing a transmission in isolation from the engine and all of those other powertrain and vehicle. However, that is changing, with the limitations and complications of this method becoming more widely recognized, and the continuous drive among manufacturers and designers to deliver optimal efficiency at Driveline gearboxes decreased weight and cost.
New powertrains feature close integration of components like the prime mover, recovery systems and the gearbox, and in addition rely on highly sophisticated control systems. That is to guarantee that the very best degree of efficiency and functionality is delivered all the time. Manufacturers are under improved pressure to create powertrains that are completely new, different from and much better than the last version-a proposition that’s made more complex by the need to integrate brand components, differentiate within the marketplace and do everything on a shorter timescale. Engineering groups are on deadline, and the development process needs to be better and fast-paced than previously.
Until now, the utilization of computer-aided engineering (CAE) has been the most typical way to develop drivelines. This process involves components and subsystems designed in isolation by silos within the business that lean toward verified component-level analysis equipment. While they are highly advanced equipment that enable users to extract very dependable and accurate data, they remain presenting data that is collected without thought of the complete system.
While this can produce components that all work very well individually, putting them with each other without prior thought of the entire system can create designs that don’t work, resulting in issues in the driveline that are difficult and expensive to correct.