A to Z of Car Tech: V is for virtual reality and valve stems
The letter V in our A to Z of car tech series explores virtual reality and the function of valve stems
The technology contained within the modern motor car can be both fascinating and slightly baffling. Most such technology exists to make our cars safer, more efficient and just better than ever to drive but some of it can be quite confusing for the average motorist. In this A to Z series we will attempt to unravel the mystery of technology that is the modern motor car. This week, we’re visiting the letter V…
V is for…virtual reality. In everyday life, virtual reality probably makes you think of computer gaming, in which realistic images, sounds and sensations are generated digitally to replicate a virtual environment.
The first ever reference to VR can be traced right back to 1938, when French writer Antonin Artaud used the term “virtual reality” to describe the magical events that sometimes happen on stage at the theatre.
For the modern car market, however, virtual reality is very much a growing technology, which can be used to “virtually” test cars long before they reach production. It can also allow customers to sample products in minute detail without physically needing to get behind the wheel.
V is for…valve stem. Ever wondered why the air inside a car tyre doesn’t just blow straight back out when you remove the pump? No, thought not…
But if you did, it’s because of something called the Schrader valve stem. This features a small poppet valve that opens via a spring when depressed to allow air in – but then closes automatically, not just because of the spring but because of the pressure that builds inside the chamber once the pump is released.
Other valve stem designs include the Presta valve, the Dunlop valve and the magnificently named Regina valve, used mostly in Italy – but the vast majority of road car tyres use the Schrader valve design.
Still listening at the back of the class?
Next, the letter W…
- 1IntroductionThe ultimate A to Z guide to the latest car technology, helping car buyers bust through the jargon and understand the benefits
- 2A is for adaptive cruise control, ABS, airbags and more...The letter A in our A to Z of Car Tech explains adaptive cruise control, ABS brakes, Adaptive Terrain response and auto dimming mirrors
- 3B is for Blind Spot Monitoring, brakes and moreThe letter B in our A to Z of car tech series...
- 4C is for chassis, connectivity and moreThe letter C in our A to Z of car tech explains chassis tech, connectivity, cruise control and carbon fibre
- 5D is for diesel, dampers and moreThe letter D in our A to Z of car tech explains diesel, dampers, dynamic drive and designers
- 6E is for electric vehicles, engines and moreThe letter E in our A to Z of car tech explains electric vehicles, economy modes, engines and exhausts...
- 7F is for fly-by-wire, four-wheel drive and moreThe letter F in our A to Z of car tech series is for four-wheel drive, fly-by-wire and future technology.
- 8G is for gearbox, and moreThe letter G in our A to Z of car tech examines how gearboxes work
- 9H is for headlights, head up display and moreThe letter H in our A to Z of car tech series explains headlights, head up displays and hill descent control
- 10I is for Inconel and in-car protectionThe letter I in our A to Z of car tech explains the nickel-chromium alloy Inconel, plus in-car protection in the form of airbags
- 11J is for J-GateThe letter J in our A to Z of car tech series looks at the infamous J-Gate automatic transmission
- 12K is for keysThe letter K in our A to Z of car tech series takes a look at the humble car key
- 13L is for limited slip diff, live infotainment and moreThe letter L in our A to Z of car tech series explains limited slip differentials, live infotainment, and much more
- 14M is for monocoques, metallic paint and mirrorsThe letter M in our A to Z of car tech series explains monocoques, metallic paint and mirrors…
- 15N is for navigationThe letter N in our A to Z of car tech series explains the history of navigation