The Lead Acid Battery Leads the Charge in Automotive Design

Automotive lead acid batteries used to start car engines, are one of the oldest design of rechargeable battery in existence. The lead acid battery was primarily used for the storage of DC power and used in early commercial vehicles due to the weight and size. These batteries have literally dominated the marketplace for many years ever since their invention back in the early 1800′s and have continued to be an important automotive component to the point were there is one in every vehicle on the roads.

Today, automotive batteries used to start gasoline and diesel engines, are smaller, cheaper and more cost effective than their earlier cousins, supplying greater starting and surge currents than ever before at a fraction of their original price.

Not only does the lead acid battery provide the correct amount of electricity needed to start engines, but they also supply electricity for the ignition system, lights, indication, stereos and other such electronic features found on today’s modern vehicles.

The energy produced by a lead acid battery occurs via an internal chemical process which involves lead (hence their name), lead oxide and a liquid acid solution called the electrolyte. Solid lead and lead oxide plates are submerged within an electrolytic solution that consists of a very small percentage of sulphuric acid (H2SO4) mixed with distilled water. When electrical power is drawn from the battery, a chemical reaction takes place between the plates and liquid electrolyte releasing electrons. These free electrons in the form of an electrical current flow through electrical conductors mounted on the battery and out via lead terminals providing the electricity required to start the car.

As the lead acid battery becomes discharged, the sulphuric acid forms deposits onto the lead plates, but when the lead acid battery is recharged again, the sulphuric acid breaks down and returns back into their separate lead and lead oxide components. Heat is generated by this constant charging and discharging of the battery evaporating the water inside.

This evaporation meant that older lead acid batteries needed to be “topped-up” with more distilled water on a monthly basis but the modern maintenance free lead acid battery is fully sealed against leakage in which the electrolyte in the form of a gel is contained in separate compartments are now used. The result is that these fully sealed batteries can be rotated upside down or positioned sideways in the event of an accident without any risk of an acid leakage. Also these modern batteries have safety valves fitted which allow the venting of fumes during the charging, the discharging and changes in atmospheric pressure when driving at altitude.

The lead acid battery is the only batteries suitable to be used in alternative energy systems but the continuous cycle of discharging a battery into a load (night time hours) and then recharging the battery (sunlight hours) many times over requires a different type of battery as not all lead acid batteries are the same. The most important requirement of a battery is whether it is a Deep Cycle Battery or a Shallow Cycle Battery.

Consider automotive starting batteries. These batteries are cheap to buy but are designed to provide high amperes of current for very short periods of time (less than 10 seconds) to operate the starter motor and turn over the engine. After the car has started, the battery is then trickle charged by the cars alternator. Even on cold frosty mornings the cars battery is only discharged to less than 10% of its rated capacity at startup so automotive batteries are designed for this very shallow cycle service, (100% to 90% state of charge).

As a car battery is designed to deliver high currents for very short periods of time it is therefore made of many thin lead plates giving a large surface area for the chemical reaction to occur. These thin lead plates do not have the necessary mechanical strength for repeated cycling over a period of many years and wear out very quickly after only 200 to 400 cycles. Therefore shallow cycle car batteries which although they work, are not designed for a long term solar power or wind power system which requires a much deeper cycling service.

Deep Cycle Batteries on the other hand are designed to be repeatedly charged and discharged by as much as 80% of their full capacity (100% to 20% state of charge) without sustaining any serious damage to the cells before recharging, making the deep cycle battery an ideal choice for solar photovoltaic and wind power systems, as well as marine applications, golf buggies, fork lift trucks and other such electric vehicles. Although the deep cycle battery uses the same chemical reactions to store and generate energy as their automotive battery cousins, deep cycle batteries are made very differently.

The physical size of a deep cycle battery is much larger than a regular car battery due to the construction and size of their lead plates (electrodes). These plates are made of solid lead usually doped with Antimony (Sb) and are many times thicker than the thinner plates of a car battery. This means that deep cycle batteries can be repeatedly discharged almost all the way down to a very low charge and it is not uncommon for deep cycle batteries to be emptied (discharged) to as much as 20% of their total capacity before energy ceases flowing from the battery.

So to summarise, the lead-acid battery is the perfect choice for automotive cars, vans and motorcyles as it is reliable, inexpensive, and delivers high starting currents but for alternative energy systems, the deep cycle battery is the way to go as it can be charged and discharged many times over to a much lower value.

Tips For Automotive Design Logo

Most companies believe that logos are the most important weapon they have to promote their services and make people know about them. In fact, a logo design allows us to analize the character of a particular company. Logos are used to represent a business or to allow the business exercise its marketing skills online. Logos can also help a company to develop a large database of clients and customers, towards the products or services it provides. Automotive design logo is a good example.

When designing an automotive logo you should keep in mind 3 things that are of great help to make the logo distinctive and very motivational: motive, latest trends and quality. An automotive logo, as any other kind of business logo, have to be related to the products or services a company provides, in this case they can be related to the basic components of bikes and automobiles. Some examples of automotive logos can be rubber tyres, bicycle handles, car wheels. Components of trucks and Harley Davidson bikes are very popular too.

It is very common that automobile companies get a logo design software or a logo design graphic tool to animate their logos by including some cartoon characters, others prefer to animate the automobile itself. For example, if a company wants the sales of tyres to increase, the tyre and the logo can be included in animated actions like crossing a finish line. A 3d logo designis also a popular choice.

Automotive logos must have some charm and magnetism to have a good impact on clients and make them show interest for their products, so it is necessary to choose the right colors and fonts. The most usual colors are black, green blue and red, because they represent excitement and adventure, also they are very motivational. Besides they provide a feeling of sporstmanship to bikers and sport car drivers in any country. As for the fonts, an automotive design logo focus on freestyle and oversize logos, the most usual fonts that can be found in automotive logos are those that are based in blackletter scripts like Celtic and gothic fonts.

A logo is a key part in contributing an automotive business to become successful and to stay like that, so you must be very careful if you want to design own logo. A good advice is not to include a lot of color and graphics into a single logo because it will make the logo look cheap and will give it a bad design. If you prefer you can look for a logo studio design to get a design logo professional.

The Beginnings of Global Automotive Manufacturing – Gruppo Bertone of Italy

The Italian based “Bertone” or formally named “Gruppo Bertone” has had an outstanding and exceptional influence on the automotive industry far away from its native country of origin of Italy. Bertone’s influence on a stable of automotive extended over a whole different geographic and company automotive manufactures across the globe – whether if be Italian cars such as Alfa Romeo, Lamborghini, Fiat or European cars such as Mercedes Benz or the Swedish Volvo vehicles. To some degree there are family similarities in the designs across the mix. This would be expected. On the other side of the coin each Bertone design project is a unique creation from inception to fruition.

With the death of Giuseppe “Nuccio” Bertone in 1997, at the age of 82 a glorious period of Italian car design came to an end. It can be said that before the end of the Second World War, and the period that followed in 1946, that Italian automotive design was plainly a regional event and nothing more. Even if vehicle designs had been downright brilliant little was ever noted or noticed outside of the immediate area and car community of Italy. The world looked to France for coachwork from 1919 to 1938, and might have continued to do so had Communist influenced governments after the war not punitively withheld raw materials from coachbuilders. Italy’s communists it seemed were more interested in jobs primarily. As a result, or as a direct initiative, they directly encouraged and nurtured a luxury car industry, in essence moving Italian automotive design to a center stage.

It can be best said that Bertone was one of the first carozzerie (coachbuilders_ to move into “series” production, with the construction of 200 Bertone MGs for Wacky Arnolt of Chicago starting in 1952. These orders then directly led to the production of some 350 Arnolt-Bristols and put Bertone in a position to manufacture a small series of coupes for Alfa Romeo, which was then in trouble with clients who had been promised a new car , whose release had been delayed by body tooling. That product – the Giulietta Sprint designed by Alfa’s Ferruccio Palamidessit, can be said to have put Bertone on the map forever. More than 40,000 of these classic vehicles were produced before replacement by the Bertone-styled Giulia GT.

Nuccio Bertone was not a designer himself, but he served first and foremost to discover, employ and guide some of the very best automotive designers known. An astute businessman, Bertone owned several anonymously titled companies in the Turin area .Thus as a result of splitting the work, and the pie across several enterprises and unconnected enterprises; he was able to persuade different automobile manufacturers across the board to let him produce automotive vehicles in series for them. Fiat 850 spiders and X-1/9s, Opel Cabriolets, Volvo coupes, and many others came from his factories. In addition his design center also created practical shapes for Japanese Mazda, French Citroen as well as Korean Daewoo among others. It could be said that this was the start of the globally integrated car industry. The country of origin of an automotive product no longer was distinct and mattered so much. The car might be designed in one country, engineered in another and yet be manufactured in yet another country and even be marketed from a different area. Where was the car made? Who knew? In the coming future the direct geographical origins of a car would be even less evident and distinct.

Time went on and with impeccable taste Bertone continued to issue audacious show cars, including several Chevrolets, the astonishing Lancia Stratos Zero and the Alfa Romeo Carabo. The production Lancia Stratos and the Lamborghini Miura and Countach brought that audacity to the automotive marketplace.

In the end it can be said that Nuccio Bertone himself was the last of the creators of the Italian automotive renaissance, a group whose names became magical talismans in the automotive world. By his ability to launch so many brilliant design careers as well as so many legendary as well as wonderful cars it can be said that this gentleman had a great influence which has left an impact not only then but even on the automotive market and styling even today.

The Science of Automotive Designs

The automobile industry is a multi-billion dollar industry, specific attention is paid to the design of an automobile and the art of designing automobiles has a lot of science involved to it. Designers need to even look at the ergonomics when they are designing the appearance of a car. The people working on the design of a car are called automotive engineers. Normally, these people hold degrees in industrial design or transportation design.

Developing the visual appearance and the overall aesthetics of the car is the major job criterion. It is further divided into exterior styling, interior styling and color and trim design. The design of the vehicle needs to be in harmony with all its functions and accessories. Exterior styling refers to the exterior shape, surfaces, proportions and the external design of the car. Virtual models are first created before the actual prototypes. The main purpose of interior styling is to provide maximum convenience and comfort to the passenger. The shape, proportion and surfaces are also important here. The instrumental panel, seats, doors, windows, dash board etc are fall under the broad category of interior styling. The color and trim design team is primarily responsible for researching, designing and developing all the colors and materials which will be used in the interior and exterior design of the vehicle. Often, these designs follow a particular theme or concept. With the advent of computers and technology, computer-aided design is used by graphic designers to design 3D models of cars.

Historically, automotive design was not as significant as it is today. In 1924, a turning point occurred when General Motors decided to make annual model changes and urged the customers to develop a need to replace their car each year. Alfred P. Sloan Jr., the head of General Motors, referred to the strategy as dynamic obsolescence whereas critics slammed it as being planned obsolescence. Ford did not adopt this strategy and hence by 1931 General Motors outsold Ford. After that period the design of the car has acquired utmost importance in the eyes of a customer and car manufacturers constantly update models, even if the underlying function and design of the car remain the same.

Along with the physics of the car and a need to be aerodynamically stable, car manufacturers also need to focus their attention on the psychology of the customer. When a powerful car is mentioned, the image of a sleek design with a low and wide base comes to the mind since many of the sports cars manufactured follow that general theme. However, we have internalized these notions and we tend to generalize along these lines. It is difficult for manufactures to go beyond these stereotypes and beyond the psychology of the mass audience to innovate greatly. Car manufactures are constantly looking for major innovation to cater to market differentiation. Concept cars are often produced as prototypes to judge the reaction of people. Many car manufacturers believe that a concept that lacks context is simply confusing so there is great interest in developing stories around concept cars to create popularity.