Air brakes are a crucial safety feature on large vehicles, especially heavy-duty trucks and buses. These brakes use compressed air to slow down and stop the vehicle, rather than hydraulic fluid like traditional brakes. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at air brakes, including their history, how they work, and why they’re still used today.
What are air brakes?
Air brakes are a type of braking system used on large vehicles such as trucks, buses, and trains. They use compressed air to apply pressure to the brake pads or shoes, slowing down and stopping the vehicle. Air brakes are especially useful for heavy-duty vehicles because they are more reliable and can be more effective than hydraulic brakes.
Who invented air brakes?
The modern air brake system was invented by George Westinghouse in 1869. Westinghouse was a prolific inventor and engineer, and he developed the air brake system to address the safety concerns of steam-powered trains. Before the air brake system, trains relied on hand brakes and the strength of the train crew to slow down and stop the train.
When were air brakes invented?
Westinghouse first patented the air brake system in 1872, but it took several years for the technology to become widely adopted. By the early 1900s, air brakes had become the standard braking system for trains, and they were later adapted for use in heavy-duty trucks and buses.
Why were air brakes invented?
The air brake system was invented to address the safety concerns of steam-powered trains. Before the air brake system, train accidents were all too common, often resulting in injury or death. The air brake system made it possible for train operators to quickly and safely slow down and stop their trains, reducing the risk of accidents.
How do air brakes work?
Air brakes work by using compressed air to apply pressure to the brake pads or shoes. When the driver presses the brake pedal, air is forced through a series of valves and hoses to the brake chambers, which apply pressure to the brake pads or shoes. This pressure slows down the wheels and brings the vehicle to a stop.