# New Definition derivative for Horsepower

• zanick
In summary, there has been SO much talk of HP and HP vs torque, it can make your head spin. I've been trying to help with some clarification for those that seem to be very confused of the physics and concepts that i came up with a new "definition" to augment what is commonly read as the definition of HP. In my work in the auto Racing field, there are many enamored with the term "torque", often confusing it with the actual torque they care about, that of what is found at the rear tires (after the gear box). Because HP is the rate of doing work (basically means acceleration of a mass) or the rate of change of KE. ( again,
zanick
There has been SO much talk of HP and HP vs torque, it can make your head spin. I've been trying to help with some clarification for those that seem to be very confused of the physics and concepts that i came up with a new "definition" to augment what is commonly read as the definition of HP. In my work in the auto Racing field, there are many enamored with the term "torque", often confusing it with the actual torque they care about, that of what is found at the rear tires (after the gear box).
Because HP is the rate of doing work (basically means acceleration of a mas at any particular speed) or the rate of change of KE. ( again, acceleration of a mass). HP, should be synonymous or equivilant to saying, its " a body's capacity or ability to accelerate at any speed).. I thought of this when i remembered the definition of energy being a body's capacity to do work. Well, how fast you do that work is power, (rate of KE change) so hence the new definition.

This way, it takes all the debate out of what HP really is... .Its not just a calculation. torque is not the "star" in most peoples minds for a vehicles ability to accelerate, it's power. Saying torque is the 'star" is like looking at work and saying the lever/distance is the star or weight/force is the star. Both are needed to know anything relevant.

so, Horsepower IS " A measure of a vehicle's capacity to accelerate"

thoughts?

RogueOne
zanick said:
thoughts?
What's wrong with James?

Nidum
Most scientists wouldn't be happy defining horse power that way. For example if one car can accelerate twice as fast as another that certainly does not mean it has twice the horsepower. The expression "a measure" is far too loose.

In my opinion there is nothing wrong with existing definitions of power.

Its easy. Remove the word horse. Then use the units of kilowatts.

People think of 'a horsepower' as a phyical entity rather than a quantity. Then 'torque' as an entirely different entity. It annoys me.

Rather than changing definitions, change the people that use them incorrectly.

rootone, davefarrell60, Work Hard Play Hard and 3 others
xxChrisxx said:
Its easy. Remove the word horse. Then use the units of kilowatts.

People think of 'a horsepower' as a phyical entity rather than a quantity. Then 'torque' as an entirely different entity. It annoys me.

Rather than changing definitions, change the people that use them incorrectly.
This makes so much sense now, I always wondered why some engines were able to produce more TQ than HP.

Like the OP, I dislike the "Torque is a measurement, horsepower is a calculation" explanation. It does nothing to clarify things for me. Plus, torque itself is "measured" on a dyno by measuring strain in a force transducer, calculating the force from that, and then multiplying by the lever arm distance to the force transducer.

Torque and horsepower are both physical quantities, and we can use them as two different ways of looking at the same situation, and in the end, come to the same conclusions. Usually one way is simpler than the other. One major difference in using them is that power, as you've said, is not tied to rotation (it's more general). It can be either force X velocity, or torque X angular velocity. So as you say, you can find the force available at the tire patch from F=P/v. Once you subtract the force to overcome drag, you can use a=Fnet/m. But even after that, remember there are other factors.

Three things can limit acceleration in a car: 1) the amount of traction at the driving tires, 2) wheel stand, and 3) power. The acceleration you can achieve is the lowest of these three. A lot of space is used to discuss this in my book Physics for Gearheads, including the effects of weight distribution, load transfer, and traction coefficients. The idea is to bring in the design and tuning choices made in the vehicle.

To summarize, I wouldn't quite say that power is the ability to accelerate. At low speeds, traction and wheel stand resistance determine that. At higher speeds, power does determine the limit.

Isn't this fascinating stuff?

RogueOne
The question, "Which matters more, power or torque?" is a false dichotomy. I don't feel they are two ways of looking at the same thing except in special situations.

Power and torque cannot be directly compared because they have different dimensions.
Torque must be multiplied by angular velocity before any comparison can be done.

Work Hard Play Hard and Randy Beikmann
CWatters said:
The question, "Which matters more, power or torque?" is a false dichotomy. I don't feel they are two ways of looking at the same thing except in special situations.

I'm not sure what you mean by their not being two ways of looking at the same situation. If you want to use engine torque, you need to know the torque (which is often unknown), go through a few gear ratios and driveline efficiency, and know the tire radius. But if you know the vehicle speed, mass, and acceleration, you can calculate the power to the ground from the straight-line motion. It all depends on what is known in the situation.

I agree that the "torque vs. horsepower" is overblown, at least from a theoretical viewpoint. With the same driveline efficiency, horsepower is what matters. BUT, for the same horsepower, lower-torque engines need more gear reduction (at a given vehicle speed), likely increasing the effective mass of the engine/flywheel inertia that is added to the mass of the car. And typically they are more difficult to drive, having narrow power bands.

RogueOne
I mean they aren't the same for the reason balancore stated. It's like comparing wealth and power. Different things that can sometimes be related but scientifically are quite different.

CWatters said:
I mean they aren't the same for the reason balancore stated. It's like comparing wealth and power. Different things that can sometimes be related but scientifically are quite different.
I think we actually agree, but I'm not sure. ;-)

CWatters
CWatters said:
Most scientists wouldn't be happy defining horse power that way. For example if one car can accelerate twice as fast as another that certainly does not mean it has twice the horsepower. The expression "a measure" is far too loose.

In my opinion there is nothing wrong with existing definitions of power.

actualy, since HP is the rate of change of KE, it would be impossible for two identical cars with all the same conditions , to NOT accelerate at the same rate if the HP for both were the same. KE start - KE end = X Joules X Joules/time =power.
power is directly proportioanl to acceleration at any same vehicle speed (same mass car (and all other conditions) comparison)
acceleration = power/(mass x velocity) is true, right? so you can't have half the power and ever accelerate at a greater rate than another car.

xxChrisxx said:
Its easy. Remove the word horse. Then use the units of kilowatts.

People think of 'a horsepower' as a phyical entity rather than a quantity. Then 'torque' as an entirely different entity. It annoys me.

Rather than changing definitions, change the people that use them incorrectly.
yes, i agree... I am all about rate of change of KE... joules! watt-seconds or kw-seconds or even HP-seconds. its what you want to optimize on a race car to make it faster than your competition.

HRubss said:
This makes so much sense now, I always wondered why some engines were able to produce more TQ than HP.

this is also a pet pieve of mine. torque EVER mentioned in the same sentence when using them to be compared to one another. they are not related other than multplying one to get the other. torque can be in Nm or in-oz, and power in KW and the curves might never cross and could not be compared numerically. you can't have "more torque than HP" it doesn't make sense.. ...though i know what you mean... and because we have so much data, yes, a engine with high "numerical" levels of torque in "Lb-Ft" vs HP will generally be a long stroke comparatively or larger displacement engine. but it doesn't do anything any better than a little tiny engine with little torque and the same HP if hey are both geared optimally.

Randy Beikmann said:
Like the OP, I dislike the "Torque is a measurement, horsepower is a calculation" explanation. It does nothing to clarify things for me. Plus, torque itself is "measured" on a dyno by measuring strain in a force transducer, calculating the force from that, and then multiplying by the lever arm distance to the force transducer.

Torque and horsepower are both physical quantities, and we can use them as two different ways of looking at the same situation, and in the end, come to the same conclusions. Usually one way is simpler than the other. One major difference in using them is that power, as you've said, is not tied to rotation (it's more general). It can be either force X velocity, or torque X angular velocity. So as you say, you can find the force available at the tire patch from F=P/v. Once you subtract the force to overcome drag, you can use a=Fnet/m. But even after that, remember there are other factors.

Three things can limit acceleration in a car: 1) the amount of traction at the driving tires, 2) wheel stand, and 3) power. The acceleration you can achieve is the lowest of these three. A lot of space is used to discuss this in my book Physics for Gearheads, including the effects of weight distribution, load transfer, and traction coefficients. The idea is to bring in the design and tuning choices made in the vehicle.

To summarize, I wouldn't quite say that power is the ability to accelerate. At low speeds, traction and wheel stand resistance determine that. At higher speeds, power does determine the limit.

Isn't this fascinating stuff?
but saying all the lmiting factors are the same for two cars, its HP or power than determines its rate of acceleration at any vehicle speed.. that's why i like the new definition to be , HP or power is a vehicles ability to accelerate. torque , engine torque that is, is meaningless. rear wheel forces, and rear wheel torque, after the gear box is relevant, but needs much more factors to be determined to tell anything of its potential. ratios, wheel diameters, etc. HP says it all. AND, a dyno will often times just measure the rate of change of KE... that IS power! the drums go from one RPM to another in 1 second, and the KE change is X Joules you just take the X Joules and muliply x 746 to get HP. simple!

CWatters said:
The question, "Which matters more, power or torque?" is a false dichotomy. I don't feel they are two ways of looking at the same thing except in special situations.
not really.. Torque is completely usless in most cases , where HP or (power) tells you your acceleration potential or ability or utilization at any vehicle speed.. torque obviously is the root of all the force to accelerate but it doesn't tell the entire story comparatively, until you do many more calculations.

i remember a thread i started a long time ago, where you were getting frustrated with me regarding this. i think now that i understand your objections, saying that HP is a vehicles capasity to accelerate at any speed is good, because it doesn't discount the real cause of acceleration , force (or torque), But gives a very clean way to compare vehicles performance with no other factors known (as long as they are the same in the comparison)

Baluncore said:
Power and torque cannot be directly compared because they have different dimensions.
Torque must be multiplied by angular velocity before any comparison can be done.
agreed

Randy Beikmann said:
I'm not sure what you mean by their not being two ways of looking at the same situation. If you want to use engine torque, you need to know the torque (which is often unknown), go through a few gear ratios and driveline efficiency, and know the tire radius. But if you know the vehicle speed, mass, and acceleration, you can calculate the power to the ground from the straight-line motion. It all depends on what is known in the situation.

I agree that the "torque vs. horsepower" is overblown, at least from a theoretical viewpoint. With the same driveline efficiency, horsepower is what matters. BUT, for the same horsepower, lower-torque engines need more gear reduction (at a given vehicle speed), likely increasing the effective mass of the engine/flywheel inertia that is added to the mass of the car. And typically they are more difficult to drive, having narrow power bands.
actually, now the ligher, lower torque vehicles ar very easy to drive. in some cases a higher numerical value torque car might be more forgiving if you are in the wrong gear, but if you drive them both correctly, there are as many advantages as disadvantages given the same HP. lower torque , higher RPM engines can have lighter rotating components, closer ratio gears, lighter weight engines, to counter act any perceived advantages. this is why the cars that are winning most of the races these days are cars powered by smaller higher reving engines. Like F1, power king.. the rest is just optimization. ;)

zanick said:
actually, now the ligher, lower torque vehicles ar very easy to drive. in some cases a higher numerical value torque car might be more forgiving if you are in the wrong gear, but if you drive them both correctly, there are as many advantages as disadvantages given the same HP. lower torque , higher RPM engines can have lighter rotating components, closer ratio gears, lighter weight engines, to counter act any perceived advantages. this is why the cars that are winning most of the races these days are cars powered by smaller higher reving engines. Like F1, power king.. the rest is just optimization. ;)

When you say "lighter, lower torque vehicles," you are changing two things: mass and torque. Given the same overall vehicle mass, and two engines with the same power, but one having 2/3 the torque, the one with less torque has to run 50% faster to produce the same HP and vehicle acceleration. The two engines may both produce the same effect, but many/most people would prefer the torquier/slower engine because there's less fuss. I remember when the Honda S2000 came out everyone raved about the naturally aspirated 2.0 L engine with 240 HP (quite a feat), but many people didn't like managing the engine, having to keep speeds in the 7000-8000 RPM range for performance. They bumped the engine to 2.2 L, keeping the power the same, but increasing torque 6%. I think it became more enjoyable to drive then.

In absolute terms, both 240 HP engines should (giving the right gearing) provide the same performance, but people tend to prefer torquier, easier to drive engines. As you say, though, race drivers prefer whatever is fastest, as long as its fussiness doesn't distract them from the rest of their driving duties.

Randy Beikmann said:
When you say "lighter, lower torque vehicles," you are changing two things: mass and torque. Given the same overall vehicle mass, and two engines with the same power, but one having 2/3 the torque, the one with less torque has to run 50% faster to produce the same HP and vehicle acceleration. The two engines may both produce the same effect, but many/most people would prefer the torquier/slower engine because there's less fuss. I remember when the Honda S2000 came out everyone raved about the naturally aspirated 2.0 L engine with 240 HP (quite a feat), but many people didn't like managing the engine, having to keep speeds in the 7000-8000 RPM range for performance. They bumped the engine to 2.2 L, keeping the power the same, but increasing torque 6%. I think it became more enjoyable to drive then.

In absolute terms, both 240 HP engines should (giving the right gearing) provide the same performance, but people tend to prefer torquier, easier to drive engines. As you say, though, race drivers prefer whatever is fastest, as long as its fussiness doesn't distract them from the rest of their driving duties.
Randy, yes, i meant lighter lower torque vehicles that have the same HP/weight , but i should have just stayed with the same platform mass. the difference being, like you noted, a wider range of usable HP , in some cases. now a days, the gear ratios are matched to the HP usable range, so vs the "high torque " brothers in the same weight car, (racing viper vs racing porscheGT3RS) the weight isn't much different .. the HP isn't much different, the torque is about half , and both cars accelerate the same at any speed anywhere on the track...even though there are some "torquies" that still think torque is important, and it isn't in an absolute sense. sure around town, the bigger grunt of the viper down low, can allow you to use 4th gear from a stand stilll almost . ;) but driving the car as designed, both cars get to use about 92% of their available HP all the time over any race track. (shift to shift)

zanick said:
Randy, yes, i meant lighter lower torque vehicles that have the same HP/weight , but i should have just stayed with the same platform mass. the difference being, like you noted, a wider range of usable HP , in some cases. now a days, the gear ratios are matched to the HP usable range, so vs the "high torque " brothers in the same weight car, (racing viper vs racing porscheGT3RS) the weight isn't much different .. the HP isn't much different, the torque is about half , and both cars accelerate the same at any speed anywhere on the track...even though there are some "torquies" that still think torque is important, and it isn't in an absolute sense. sure around town, the bigger grunt of the viper down low, can allow you to use 4th gear from a stand stilll almost . ;) but driving the car as designed, both cars get to use about 92% of their available HP all the time over any race track. (shift to shift)

A vehicle that produces more torque at a given RPM than another vehicle at that same RPM will have more horsepower at that given RPM.

Torque is the measure of the magnitude of a twisting force that tends to cause rotation. You can apply torque to something without having it move. Think about using a wrench on a bolt that refuses to budge. You are imparting a twisting force onto the bolt, but not moving it.

Horsepower is merely a unit of work done over a given period of time. To make one horsepower, you need to do 550 ft-lbs of work in one minute. That means you can lift 1lb 550 feet, you can lift 550lbs 1 foot, or any factor pair equaling 550 ft-lbs. Think of torque as the amount of weight that you are lifting, and horsepower as a function of how much work you can do in one minute.

Lets say there are 3 guys hauling sand with their shovels. Guy #1 can scoop and haul 50lbs of sand in one trip, but he can only make 3 trips per minute. Guy #2 can scoop and haul 10lbs of sand the same distance as guy #1, but he can do the trip 15 times per minute. Then there is guy #3. Guy #3 can scoop and haul 50lbs of sand the same distance as the other guys, but he can do it 15 times per minute. Guys 1 & 2 have the exact same amount of horsepower. Guy #3 has 5 times the horsepower of the other two guys.

Here is the basic equation for calculating horsepower. HP = (Torque X RPM) / 5252

RogueOne said:
A vehicle that produces more torque at a given RPM than another vehicle at that same RPM will have more horsepower at that given RPM.

No argument with you when referring to engines or vehicles with manual transmissions. A vehicle with an automatic transmission will have it's RPM, HP and torque relationship determined by the choice of torque convertor.

zanick said:
There has been SO much talk of HP and HP vs torque, it can make your head spin. I've been trying to help with some clarification for those that seem to be very confused of the physics and concepts that i came up with a new "definition" to augment what is commonly read as the definition of HP. In my work in the auto Racing field, there are many enamored with the term "torque", often confusing it with the actual torque they care about, that of what is found at the rear tires (after the gear box).
Because HP is the rate of doing work (basically means acceleration of a mas at any particular speed) or the rate of change of KE. ( again, acceleration of a mass). HP, should be synonymous or equivilant to saying, its " a body's capacity or ability to accelerate at any speed).. I thought of this when i remembered the definition of energy being a body's capacity to do work. Well, how fast you do that work is power, (rate of KE change) so hence the new definition.

This way, it takes all the debate out of what HP really is... .Its not just a calculation. torque is not the "star" in most peoples minds for a vehicles ability to accelerate, it's power. Saying torque is the 'star" is like looking at work and saying the lever/distance is the star or weight/force is the star. Both are needed to know anything relevant.

so, Horsepower IS " A measure of a vehicle's capacity to accelerate"

thoughts?

As an agent for a European auto co. in the 90's I met and worked a lot with Jim Thornton. He's credited as the inventor of the Funny Car and torque cancelling chassis along with being the driver for Chrysler's Ramcharger Team and Head of their racing division. We spent a fair share of time discussing how engineers from the different companies get along and share with each other and how outright stupid customers can get. It drove Jim nuts because people expected him to see only Chrysler like they did. He never said this but I got the impression it's why he left Chrysler. People can relate to numbers and they depend on numbers to justify decisions they make. Whether they can define what the numbers mean or not there needed to justify opinions and choices. Overall there is not a whole lot of difference in cars made to meet the same price points and purposes. Most men though will argue numbers before they argue the aesthetics of the vinyl used on their trucks dashboard.

RogueOne said:
A vehicle that produces more torque at a given RPM than another vehicle at that same RPM will have more horsepower at that given RPM.

Torque is the measure of the magnitude of a twisting force that tends to cause rotation. You can apply torque to something without having it move. Think about using a wrench on a bolt that refuses to budge. You are imparting a twisting force onto the bolt, but not moving it.

Horsepower is merely a unit of work done over a given period of time. To make one horsepower, you need to do 550 ft-lbs of work in one minute. That means you can lift 1lb 550 feet, you can lift 550lbs 1 foot, or any factor pair equaling 550 ft-lbs. Think of torque as the amount of weight that you are lifting, and horsepower as a function of how much work you can do in one minute.

Lets say there are 3 guys hauling sand with their shovels. Guy #1 can scoop and haul 50lbs of sand in one trip, but he can only make 3 trips per minute. Guy #2 can scoop and haul 10lbs of sand the same distance as guy #1, but he can do the trip 15 times per minute. Then there is guy #3. Guy #3 can scoop and haul 50lbs of sand the same distance as the other guys, but he can do it 15 times per minute. Guys 1 & 2 have the exact same amount of horsepower. Guy #3 has 5 times the horsepower of the other two guys.
Here is the basic equation for calculating horsepower. HP = (Torque X RPM) / 5252
RogueOne , If you read the comparison, we were talking about same HP engines. (one with more torque than the other). Horsepower is the rate of doing work, and this by definition is a capacity to accelerate. a rate of change of KE is a HP as well, and that's how dynos measure HP. the point is, torque is the force that causes the rotation, but if its rated at the engine its relativity meaningless, unless you have a bunch more data points ( RPM, gear rations, tire diameters, etc) but, if you have a HP value you have a much better indication of its acceleration potential than if you only have a engine torque value. sure, if you had rear wheel torque values after the gear ratios, this would give you the exact same information . while two cars may make different HP at the same RPM with different torque values, the one with the most HP can produce the greatest forces at the rear wheels at any same speed. that might be at a higher RPM and a very low torque value....HP is a great indicator, much better than engine torque values , simply because it contains more information.

This is a nonsense thread. Zanick your premise was to redefine 'Horsepower' as a vehicles capacity for acceleration based on the premise "how fast you do that work is power, (rate of KE change) so hence the new definition."

P=W/t
W=F*d
P=Fd/t
d/t=v
P=Fv
F=ma
P=mav

How is that, in any way, a redefinition? Infact, it's a tautology. You are simply restating THE definition power is rate of work done. The work in this case is accelerating the mass of the car around a track. If you live in an abstract world, where you just want a quick calculation of how fast you can go fine.

My objection to threads like this is the inevitable broad statement that "engine torque is totally meaningless". Engine torque defines the maximum possible loading down the driveline. If you actually want to build the damn thing in real life, you need to know and consider torque at points down the drive line because we don't live in an abstract world. Real components made of real materials break if you overload them. A car with a broken gearbox, or broken driveshafts has zero acceleration.

RogueOne and russ_watters
Work Hard Play Hard said:
No argument with you when referring to engines or vehicles with manual transmissions. A vehicle with an automatic transmission will have it's RPM, HP and torque relationship determined by the choice of torque convertor.

If you elaborated on that idea more, I could tell you why its false. As of right now, I don't even know what you are trying to say. I'm trying to understand why you would think this unless you are measuring torque at the crank, and measuring horsepower at the rear wheels without measuring torque at the rear wheels. (not possible, btw) and then referencing it by the crankshaft's RPM rather than the roller's.

Are we all clear that dynamometers measure torque, and that the engine speed at which that amount of torque is produced is how horsepower is made? I am trying to find out how exactly you guys think horsepower and torque are measured at a given RPM. The engine with more torque at a given RPM is always the engine that has more HP at that particular RPM. The vehicle that produces more torque at the rear wheels at a given wheel speed is always the one that makes more horsepower at that wheel speed.

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xxChrisxx said:
My objection to threads like this is the inevitable broad statement that "engine torque is totally meaningless". Engine torque defines the maximum possible loading down the driveline. If you actually want to build the damn thing in real life, you need to know and consider torque at points down the drive line because we don't live in an abstract world. Real components made of real materials break if you overload them. A car with a broken gearbox, or broken driveshafts has zero acceleration.
This is not what "engine torque is totally meaningless" means. It means that power alone gives more info about the capabilities of an engine than torque alone. Actually, torque alone says nothing about the capabilities of an engine, thus the use of the word "meaningless".

If you have an engine having a certain power-rpm relationship, connected to a driveline, you will have a certain torque-rpm relationship along that driveline.

If you put another engine, having the same power but at half the rpm, you just need to connect a 1:2 gearbox between the engine and the driveline to obtain the exact same torque-rpm relationship everywhere on that driveline.

If, instead of engine power, you try to match the engine torque curve for both engines that are at different rpms, no gearbox will be able to match the torque-rpm relationship of both drivelines.

Thread becoming a normal torque vs horsepower 'debate'

RogueOne said:
If you elaborated on that idea more, I could tell you why its false. As of right now, I don't even know what you are trying to say.

Sorry, stall speed and rotational equilibrium. Accepting a steady RPM without a change in acceleration as rotational equilibrium where torque is zero.

xxChrisxx said:
This is a nonsense thread. Zanick your premise was to redefine 'Horsepower' as a vehicles capacity for acceleration based on the premise "how fast you do that work is power, (rate of KE change) so hence the new definition."

P=W/t
W=F*d
P=Fd/t
d/t=v
P=Fv
F=ma
P=mav

How is that, in any way, a redefinition? Infact, it's a tautology. You are simply restating THE definition power is rate of work done. The work in this case is accelerating the mass of the car around a track. If you live in an abstract world, where you just want a quick calculation of how fast you can go fine.

My objection to threads like this is the inevitable broad statement that "engine torque is totally meaningless". Engine torque defines the maximum possible loading down the driveline. If you actually want to build the damn thing in real life, you need to know and consider torque at points down the drive line because we don't live in an abstract world. Real components made of real materials break if you overload them. A car with a broken gearbox, or broken driveshafts has zero acceleration.
Chris, yes, it is a re-definition based on so many people not knowing the relationship of HP vs torque values. yes, i made a broad statement but it's not as broad as you make it out to be . taken out of context, it may seem so, but in the context of how it is used and thought of in relation to engines and performance, it is. sure, building a driveliine needs to consider all forces acting on it. but when performance alone is being discussed, its a factor as irrelevant as just engine speed alone is HP is a shortcut to compare and assess a cars ability to accelerate... after all, you mentioned in your line of identities... P=F/v and don't forget A=P/(mv) which clearly shows that at any same speed and mass, acceleration is proportional to power. engine torque can be any values and it is meaningless without a engine speed factor to be paired up. so, we are not talking about the re-definitino in terms of "building anything" we are talking about in the context of a car's abiltiy to accelerate at any speed. It's not uncommon for physics definitions to have multiple definitions for terms for the reason i just mentioned.

RogueOne said:
If you elaborated on that idea more, I could tell you why its false. As of right now, I don't even know what you are trying to say. I'm trying to understand why you would think this unless you are measuring torque at the crank, and measuring horsepower at the rear wheels without measuring torque at the rear wheels. (not possible, btw) and then referencing it by the crankshaft's RPM rather than the roller's.

Are we all clear that dynamometers measure torque, and that the engine speed at which that amount of torque is produced is how horsepower is made? I am trying to find out how exactly you guys think horsepower and torque are measured at a given RPM. The engine with more torque at a given RPM is always the engine that has more HP at that particular RPM. The vehicle that produces more torque at the rear wheels at a given wheel speed is always the one that makes more horsepower at that wheel speed.
RogueOne, i agree with your question as well. i think the auto transmission question really becomes related to starting from a stand still as far as its effective gearing multiplication. but not to digress. dynomomerters , rolling dynomometers measure rate of change of KE. by definition, this is Horsepower (or power) . you have 500kJ at xRPM and one second later you have 1,000,000J, you just measured a change of KE of 1M Joules... that is 680HP. we are not talking at all about two engines with the same RPM level making different torque..we are talking about two different engines with the same HP levels. let me say it again HP is the same, but their engines are completey different in max RPM levels and max torque levels... make sense? in real life, this is why a viper V10 with 500hp makes 2x the torque as a porsche GT3RS with 500hp .. but on the rear wheel dyno or the road, both will put the same forces down to the ground at any speed around the track. (assuming same HP shape curve, or same gearing proportions, which they do have in some cases by the way)

jack action said:
This is not what "engine torque is totally meaningless" means. It means that power alone gives more info about the capabilities of an engine than torque alone. Actually, torque alone says nothing about the capabilities of an engine, thus the use of the word "meaningless".

If you have an engine having a certain power-rpm relationship, connected to a driveline, you will have a certain torque-rpm relationship along that driveline.

If you put another engine, having the same power but at half the rpm, you just need to connect a 1:2 gearbox between the engine and the driveline to obtain the exact same torque-rpm relationship everywhere on that driveline.

If, instead of engine power, you try to match the engine torque curve for both engines that are at different rpms, no gearbox will be able to match the torque-rpm relationship of both drivelines.
Well said .. thank you for that clarifying post! taking this analysis of two different engines with same HP one step further, if you know the shape of the HP curves and one is broader than the other, you need gear ratio spacing to change to make sure both are utilizing the HP available equally. higher reving , peaky hp engines generally need closer ratio gear boxes for that reason.

Rather than calling it a "new definition," I would call this an "often overlooked viewpoint."

As soon as someone mentions power, everyone jumps to angular dynamics (torque x angular velocity), rather than considering translational (force x velocity). Life becomes a lot easier if you realize that in many situations, either can be used. I have found it a lot easier to estimate power required for acceleration of a dragster by multiplying mass x acceleration x velocity than to try and find out what the torque at the crankshaft is and multiplying by engine speed (that's hard data to find...).

RogueOne
I an sure we have now better definitions of 'amount of work done'. than estimating how many typical sized draft horses are required to transport some number of sacks of grain to the local brewery.

rootone said:
I an sure we have now better definitions of 'amount of work done'. than estimating how many typical sized draft horses are required to transport some number of sacks of grain to the local brewery.

Tradition is pretty strong in industry. We still measure engine speeds in rev/minute, even though rev/second at least uses an SI unit for time, and rad/sec would be more proper still. But how many people would understand that?

At least we know that 1 horsepower = 550 ft-lbf/sec, and we can convert easily enough to watts. Even the Germans have a metric horsepower, the Pferdestärke, or PS DIN. Maybe people just still relate to a comparison to the capability of a horse.

rootone said:
I an sure we have now better definitions of 'amount of work done'. than estimating how many typical sized draft horses are required to transport some number of sacks of grain to the local brewery.
Actually, its not the amount of work done... that would be energy. HP-seconds, (a unit measure of work) Joules.. etc... Hp or Power, would be the rate that work is being done. ;) This is why, in the spirit of the defintinon (or one of the defnintions) of energy . "a body's capacity to do work"
HP, could be a car's (or vehicle) capacity to accelerate at any speed.

Randy Beikmann said:
Tradition is pretty strong in industry. We still measure engine speeds in rev/minute, even though rev/second at least uses an SI unit for time, and rad/sec would be more proper still. But how many people would understand that?

At least we know that 1 horsepower = 550 ft-lbf/sec, and we can convert easily enough to watts. Even the Germans have a metric horsepower, the Pferdestärke, or PS DIN. Maybe people just still relate to a comparison to the capability of a horse.
i think its way deeper than that, its really about power's relationship and measure of accelerative forces (translational or rotational) . that rate of doing work, gets commonly confused with quantity of work done. with the right gearing, a bunch of turtles can bring those same sacks to the brewery, but it might take them a while. ;)

zanick said:
i think its way deeper than that, its really about power's relationship and measure of accelerative forces (translational or rotational) . that rate of doing work, gets commonly confused with quantity of work done. with the right gearing, a bunch of turtles can bring those same sacks to the brewery, but it might take them a while. ;)

Well, you can see why my 17-chapter book doesn't tackle the subject of power until Chapter 14. It isn't nearly as obvious as torque is.

But remember that power can be used for a lot more than acceleration of mass. That's just one aspect of it.

## What is the "New Definition derivative for Horsepower"?

The "New Definition derivative for Horsepower" is a new method of measuring the power of a horse, which takes into account factors such as speed, weight, and terrain. This new definition aims to provide a more accurate and standardized measurement of a horse's power.

## How is the "New Definition derivative for Horsepower" different from the traditional definition?

The traditional definition of horsepower only takes into account the weight a horse can pull over a certain distance in a certain amount of time. The new definition also considers factors such as speed and terrain, providing a more comprehensive measurement of a horse's power.

## Why was the "New Definition derivative for Horsepower" developed?

The new definition was developed in response to the limitations of the traditional definition of horsepower. It aims to provide a more accurate and standardized measurement of a horse's power, taking into account a wider range of factors.

## How is the "New Definition derivative for Horsepower" calculated?

The "New Definition derivative for Horsepower" is calculated by using a formula that takes into account the horse's weight, speed, and terrain. This formula provides a more comprehensive and accurate measurement of a horse's power compared to the traditional definition.

## What are the potential implications of the "New Definition derivative for Horsepower" in the equine industry?

The new definition could have significant implications in the equine industry, as it may change the way horses are evaluated and compared. It could also lead to more accurate training and breeding decisions, as well as more fair competitions. However, further research and adoption of the new definition would be needed for these implications to be fully realized.

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