Discovery Science: Technology – bicycles and motorbikes

Physics and technology – technology – bicycles and motorbikes

Two-wheelers, whether powered by muscles or motors, can be used as a means of transportation, sports equipment, and even toys. Today, they are more popular than ever.

High-capacity street motorcycles achieve speeds of up to 186 mph (300 km/h). Due to their lower air resistance and friction, they are more efficient than four-wheel vehicles.
Centrifugal force While a bicycle or motorcycle may seem easier to steer, the forces of physics affect two- wheel vehicles.

Centripetal forces act perpendicular to any body that is changing its direction of motion. During a right turn, the rider experiences a force to the left and leans into the curve in order to balance the acting forces.


The method of propulsion differs between bicycles and motorcycles. The bicycle rider applies pressure to the pedal, rotating the front sprocket wheel, which in turn moves the chain, transferring the circular motion to the rear sprocket wheel and the rear axle.

In the case of the motorcycle, a two-or four-stroke combustion engine powers the circular motion of the front wheel, while a chain or wheel drive transmits the power through either a transmission or gearbox to the rear wheel and axle.

The gearbox

The gearbox controls the number of revolutions per minute in an engine by pairing up the large and small gears in different combinations.

The gears are controlled by the clutch, which is usually made up of two friction disks. Once the clutch is released, the disks separate from each other, which consequently allows the gears to be shifted.

Innovations in two-wheelers

Innovations in two-wheelers include new frame materials, tougher body materials, upgraded braking systems, improved suspensions, and the addition of computer systems.

These innovations are not only stylish, but they also improve security and comfort for the rider.


From a physics standpoint, a wheel works like a toy top. The gyroscopic effect stabilizes the horizontal rotational axis once the wheels are moving fast enough. Once the wheel slows down, it can start to wobble, until the gyroscopic effect is no longer strong enough to create stabilization.

While the gyroscopic effect contributes to stabilizing a two-wheeler, its effect is not as great as the centripetal forces that help drive a two wheeler.


GEARLESS HUB DYNAMOS used to generate electricity are highly efficient (70%), low maintenance, and reliable, even in snow.

HYDRAULIC RIM BRAKES have advantages including efficiency, ease of control, and endurance. They are also maintenance-free.