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For Starters, Look to Hydraulics (.PDF Download)

Most of us are familiar with the starting systems in our cars. Electrical power is stored in a battery, and an alternator keeps the battery charged when the engine is running. Activating the car’s ignition switch creates a circuit that routes a surge of electrical power from the battery to a starter motor. There’s a little more to it, like solenoids, regulators, and such, but it’s a simple system that has remained relatively unchanged for decades.

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