Basics of Hydraulics

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Hydraulics Basics For Beginners

You can see applications of hydraulic industry all around. But how many of you know the hydraulics basics? Most of them use hydraulic products, but they don’t concern about the method used behind that. Sometimes, only a few people related to this industry might know about it. This article will be a useful one for all, those who want to know about the hydraulic industry.

Let’s begin with the application of the hydraulic industry. Because you will find it more interesting to know the fact that, most of the machinery that you encounter in your daily life is related to hydraulics. Hydraulics is applied in many industries like construction, agriculture, aerospace, automobile, etc. Few products that use hydraulics include hydraulic harvesters, cranes, presses, excavators, drill-rigs, braking system and landing gear of aircraft, brakes and power steering in vehicles, etc.

Now, we can enter into the theory of hydraulics. Hydraulics is a branch of civil engineering that generates force using incompressible fluids like oil and water. Most of the hydraulic systems use oil because they are incompressible and provide lubrication and cooling to the parts. Hydraulic fluids are selected depending on its task and environmental requirements. Viscosity (internal resistance to flow), chemical stability (the ability of the fluid to resist oxidation and deterioration), flash point, fire point, are the other properties considered for selection of fluids.

The basic design of a hydraulic system contains two pistons and a cylinder connected to it. The applied force on one piston will push the liquid through the cylinder and exerts pressure on the next piston. In hydraulics, for applying a small force in a larger area, a large force on a small area is required.

Also Read: Checklist for Hydraulic System Care and Maintenance

Pascal's principle is the rule used in hydraulics power. The basic components of a hydraulic circuit include a hydraulic actuator to convert the fluid power into mechanical power, a hydraulic pump to push fluids from a reservoir to other parts of the system, valves to control the direction, pressure and flow rate, the external power supply such as motors for driving the pump, reservoir for storing hydraulic fluids, filters to protect and clean the system from foreign particles, pressure regulators, and piping system to carry fluids from one place to another.

Commonly, hydraulics systems are used for moving, lifting, and pushing items. Hydrodynamics and hydrostatics are the two branches of hydraulics. Hydrodynamics deals with moving fluids and are used in the water wheel or turbines. Whereas, hydrostatics deals with pressurized liquids and are used in hydraulic presses and hydraulic cylinders. Most of the hydraulic equipment’s are based on hydrostatics.

Hydraulics has many advantages over other technologies like pneumatic and electric. Pneumatic is similar to that of hydraulics, except it uses gases instead of fluids. Precise positioning, favorable heat dissipation, good control, smooth operation, adaptable for the hot environment, etc. are some examples of hydraulics over others.

Many online and classroom training courses are available on hydraulics for beginners. A hydraulic engineer is a person who has an engineering degree in Mechanical and specialization in hydraulics. Newcastle University, University of Akron, National University of Singapore, Indian Institute of Technology, etc. are a few universities providing hydraulic engineering course. Bosch Rexroth, Yuken, TPC, HYDAC, NFPC-UK, University of Bath, UK etc. are some hydraulic training institutes providing short-term and long-term courses on hydraulic circuits, hydraulic safety, hydraulic machinery, etc.

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