A clutch is a mechanical device
A machine manages power to accomplish a task, examples include, a mechanical system, a computing system, an electronic system, and a molecular machine. In common usage, the meaning is that of a device having parts that perform or assist in performing any type of work...

 which provides for the transmission of power
Power transmission
Power transmission is the movement of energy from its place of generation to a location where it is applied to performing useful work.Power is defined formally as units of energy per unit time...

 (and therefore usually motion) from one component (the driving member) to another (the driven member). The opposite component of the clutch is the brake
A brake is a mechanical device which inhibits motion. Its opposite component is a clutch. The rest of this article is dedicated to various types of vehicular brakes....


Clutches are used whenever the ability to limit the transmission of power or motion needs to be controlled either in amount or over time (e.g., electric screwdrivers limit how much torque is transmitted through use of a clutch; clutches control whether automobiles transmit engine power to the wheels).

In the simplest application clutches are employed in devices which have two rotating shafts.