Browse Definitions:
Definition

torque

Contributor(s): Matthew Haughn

Torque is a twisting or turning force that tends to cause rotation around an axis, which might be a center of mass or a fixed point.

Torque can also be thought of as the ability of something that is rotating, such as a gear or a shaft, to overcome turning resistance. It is generally measured in pounds per foot or newtons per meter.

The animated gif below illustrates the interaction of force, torque, linear momentum and angular momentum in a system with rotation constrained to one plane:

Torque animation Torque is sometimes confused with work, which is defined as force applied over a distance. However, torsion (twisting) is integral to the definition of torque. Both torque and work are mechanical manifestations of energy.

Torque is commonly spoken of in relationship to automobiles; it’s the force that makes cars capable of smoking brake burns and fast acceleration from low speed. Increased torque can be attained by gearing or enhanced engine performance (through modification). Generally, higher displacement engines produce more torque. Diesel engines are known for high torque and low horse power, which makes diesel engines suitable for hauling loads. When transporting heavy loads, starting fast from a stop, or moving gears under resistance torque is a more important force than horse power.

 Khan Academy provides an introduction to torque:

This was last updated in February 2016

Continue Reading About torque

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

Powered by:

SearchCompliance

  • internal audit (IA)

    An internal audit (IA) is an organizational initiative to monitor and analyze its own business operations in order to determine ...

  • pure risk (absolute risk)

    Pure risk, also called absolute risk, is a category of threat that is beyond human control and has only one possible outcome if ...

  • risk assessment

    Risk assessment is the identification of hazards that could negatively impact an organization's ability to conduct business.

SearchSecurity

  • principle of least privilege (POLP)

    The principle of least privilege (POLP), an important concept in computer security, is the practice of limiting access rights for...

  • identity management (ID management)

    Identity management (ID management) is the organizational process for identifying, authenticating and authorizing individuals or ...

  • zero-day (computer)

    A zero-day vulnerability, also known as a computer zero day, is a flaw in software, hardware or firmware that is unknown to the ...

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR)

    Business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) are closely related practices that describe an organization's preparation for ...

  • business continuity plan (BCP)

    A business continuity plan (BCP) is a document that consists of the critical information an organization needs to continue ...

  • call tree

    A call tree -- sometimes referred to as a phone tree -- is a telecommunications chain for notifying specific individuals of an ...

SearchStorage

SearchSolidStateStorage

  • hybrid hard disk drive (HDD)

    A hybrid hard disk drive is an electromechanical spinning hard disk that contains some amount of NAND Flash memory.

Close