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Automatic Transmission founded in 1883 by Thomas L. Sturtevant - How Will?

Automatic Transmission founded in 1883 by Thomas L. Sturtevant

Automatic Transmission
An automatic transmission, also called auto, self-shifting transmission or AT. Automatic Transmission is a type of motor vehicle transmission that can automatically change gear ratios as the vehicle moves, freeing the driver from having to shift gears manually.

The Sturtevant family business was founded in 1883 by Thomas L. Sturtevant, with this aim of satisfying the increasing need for mechanization in the fertilizer industry. Thomas’s son Lawrence, and his nephew Thomas J. Sturtevant, came to work for him-Thomas bringing with him a degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Sturtevant soon branched out into the automatic field and designed various improvements including vacuum brakes and automatic engine lubrication transmission that paved the way for today’s automatic cars.

At the time, one of the biggest headaches for designers in the fast evolving car industry was simply getting the power from the engine to the wheels. His solution was the engine from the wheels. His solution was innovative, put initially a failure. His first automatic car of 1904 used the centrifugal force of the car increased, the spinning action caused these weights to swing outward, where they would eventually engage with a band that shifted the car from low to high gear. The design was flawed and often the weights would fly apart under the stress. But the concept of a car automatically changing gear was proven.
Despite various experimental attempts to come up with a practical automatic car, the initial costs, reliability, and lack of demand meant that it was several decades before the automatic became a common site on the road.

The automatic transmission was invented in 1921 by Alfred Horner Munro of Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada, and patented under Canadian patent CA 235757 in 1923.

The first automatic transmission using hydraulic fluid may have been developed in 1932 by two Brazilian engineers, José Braz Araripe and Fernando Lehly Lemos; subsequently the prototype and plans were sold to General Motors who introduced it in the 1940 Oldsmobile as the “Hydra-Matic” transmission.


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