The term locomotive It can be used as an adjective or as a noun. In the first case, it refers to what is linked to the locomotion : the transfer from one site to another.
Its most common use, however, is as a noun. The locomotive is called the machine that is used to drag the wagons of a train .
A locomotive is a rolling material since it has wheels and, thus, can circulate on the tracks . An internal combustion engine, electricity or steam give you the energy needed to move and drag the formation.
Until the middle of twentieth century and since the beginning of the previous one, the steam locomotives they were the most used railway traction means. These machines appeal to the combustion of wood, fuel oil, biomass, coal or other fuel in a boiler, heating water. He steam that arises from the boil allows, thanks to the pressure, to move the pistons that give impetus to the wheels through a set of connecting rods.
It is known by the name of connecting rod to a mechanical object that is capable of transmitting movement to articulate other parts of a machine when subjected to compression or tensile stress. The steam locomotives had external combustion engines, because they carried out the conversion of caloric energy into mechanics through a process that was carried out outside the car.
Since the Water it was indispensable for steam production and, therefore, for the operation of these trains, had to be resupplied with some frequency . Although at first glance the steam locomotive seems simply a distant memory, in some cities they still exist, even if it is not for tourist purposes. The current ones are usually modernized versions of the old or models built with advanced technologies but with the appearance of their predecessors.
The diesel locomotives while they take advantage of the Energy which generates a two-cycle or four-stroke diesel internal combustion engine (those of two are the most used). The power is transmitted by a mechanical system for smaller trains, but by a hydraulic or electric system for the largest and most powerful.
There are also the electric locomotives , who receive electricity from an external source. Said electric power is applied to the traction motor. For its operation, power cables are needed in the entire train route.
The diesel-hydraulic locomotives and the diesel-electric locomotives , meanwhile, they combine different components to move and fulfill their function .
The diesel-hydraulic locomotive is based on a system of turbines Hydraulics that are coupled and allow the power to reach the wheels gradually from the motor, which rotates constantly. It is important to note that this system is not capable of moving considerable loads, which is why it is used mostly in motor vehicles.
Diesel-electric, on the other hand, have two components: a certain number of engines electric (called "traction"), which transmit the tractive force to the wheels, and a diesel, which produces the movement of an electric generator. Usually, a traction motor is placed on each of the axles. They receive electric current from the main generator and then move the wheel axles through pinions.
It should be noted that the idea Locomotive can be used symbolically to refer to what drives something . For example: “Agriculture is the locomotive of the local economy”, "Once again, the forward was the locomotive of the team", “Young people must be the locomotive of the social and cultural change that this country needs”.