The Importance of Hydraulic Cylinders in the 21st Century

The Importance of Hydraulic Cylinders in the 21st Century

Today’s manufacturing processes are automated and sophisticated. Some machinery is capable of manufacturing, assembly, processing, and preparing goods for shipment. However, many industrial processes still depend on the power of hydraulics with hydraulic cylinders and components. In fact, hydraulics is still going strong in the 21st Century and here are some reasons why.

It Goes Back Many Years

Hydraulics has a long history that dates back to the irrigation systems of the Nile River in Ancient Egypt. However, before that, fluid power helped people tell the time in ancient Greece. In fact, water clocks are still used today in some parts of the world.

How Hydraulics Works

If you take a hypodermic syringe and fill it full of water (by pulling back on the plunger) the water will squirt out the end when you depress the plunger. This demonstrates the basic principle behind hydraulic cylinders and modern hydraulic systems. When you compress a fluid, the energy is transmitted equally all throughout the fluid. In other words, the outward and forward forces are the same.

A typical hydraulic system uses fluid and a reservoir or tank to store the fluid. It uses a cylinder to compress fluid and a pump to force fluid through the system. You also need hoses or lines for the fluid and control valves.

Hydraulic Systems in Action

A hydraulic car jack is small, but it can lift part of an automobile in the air. Here is how it works. The jack has a reservoir full of hydraulic oil. It uses a cylinder with a piston and seals to force the fluid into a hollow rod or compartment. As the rod extends, it causes a mechanism to get longer and longer. When you release the pressure by turning a knob, the hydraulic pressure collapses, and the mechanism retracts. Thanks to hydraulic cylinders, the wheels of industry keep turning.

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