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Facts About Hydraulic Power ben lee

Fascinating Facts About Hydraulic Power

We have said it before and we will say it again: hydraulic power really is one of the most important technological advancements of all time! It frequently helps our society run and function far more smoothly and efficiently and most of us would not even realise. However, we are sure that nearly all of us would notice if the world suddenly stopped using hydraulic power because the world would be a very, VERY different place. 

Hydraulic power is used in so many everyday applications from mechanical lifts to bulldozers and now even in our braking systems. In this article we are going to share with you, in our opinion some of the most interesting facts about hydraulic power out there.

All hydraulic power systems will contain four core components. These include the fluid reservoir, which quite simply houses the fluid, a pump to spread the fluid through the system, a cylinder to convert the fluid movement and the valves which control pressure and flow.

The word hydraulics originates from the Greek word ‘Hydros’ meaning water. This is because water was the first liquid to be used in hydraulic systems. 

Hydraulic pumps are used by NASA’s in their space shuttle. These pumps operate at a whopping 3600 revolutions per minute and each one could supply hydraulic pressure of 3050 PSI. 

For hydraulic power to work it must flow. If the flow encounters any block or opening, then the pressure will drop. For hydraulics to work, it is vital that the flow is unrestricted. 

Hydraulics was discovered in the 17th and 18th century by two men Pascal and Bernoulli. Their principals led Joseph Bramah in the late 17th century to create the first hydraulic press. This press was used to pump beers from cellars to the taps in public bars.

Hydraulics are not the only way to transmit energy, many industries also used mechanical, electrical and pneumatic energy. Mechanical energy is from crank mechanisms, shafts and linkages, electrical is from electric motors. Pneumatics is the closest to hydraulics but instead of using fluid it used gas. 

Without the pressure, you would not have hydraulic power. Hydraulic systems contain fluid that is under intense pressure. Pressurised fluid is what produces energy. 

Did you know that not all hydraulic systems are the same? Generally you have two types of systems, firstly there is an open centre system and secondly there is the closed centre system. The open system has a varied pressure with constant flow and closed systems have constant pressure and varied flow. 

Many people believe the common misconception that oil is pulled through the system, this is not the case. Hydraulic power is created by air pressure pushing the fluid through the system not pulling. 

Finally, our last fact is that hydraulics can produce three different types of energy. You have kinetic energy which is caused by moving fluids, you have heat energy which is produced by resistance to the flow and lastly you have potential energy which is caused by the pressure. 

There are so many other interesting facts about hydraulics but we really could be here all day. 




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