May the Hydraulic Force be with you: 7 Major Industries that Depend on Hydraulics
Custom hydraulics is an essential part of society, impacting everything from the very cars we drive to the food we eat.
However, most people don’t understand the fundamental role hydraulic power plays in their everyday lives. Today, we’re going to debunk the myth that hydraulics is reserved for only a select few industries.
Because the truth is, it’s used in more industries than you can imagine. Here are just seven ways custom hydraulics finds its way into our lives. How many more can you think of?
A Brief Introduction
Most people understand the basic principles behind hydraulics, but few comprehend the science. If you look up the term “hydraulics,” chances are you’re going to come across a whole lot of scientific lingo.
In reality, the science can be broken down this way:
When force is applied to a fluid whose density won’t change under pressure, that force is equally distributed throughout the fluid. As a result, pressure can be applied to a small opening and transferred through the liquid to a larger opening to move a large piece of equipment.
Chances are, you’re wondering how one tiny bit of force could move a heavy sheet of steel or, perhaps, an entire car. This is due to hydraulic multiplication.
When the fluid moves from the smaller area to the much larger area, the force multiplies. A lot. As a result, the pressure is able to move large objects.
And it’s invaluable in our society. Some everyday uses include:
As you can see, hydraulics affect everything from daily needs to entertainment.
1. The Automobile Industry
If you own a car, you utilize hydraulics every day when you drive.
Today’s cars use hydraulic pumps, brakes, and motors to get you from Point A to Point B. Brakes, for instance, utilize the pressure applied on brake fluid to press the pistons to brake pad, allowing you to stop.
In case you were wondering, hydraulics also led to the unfortunate trend of lowriders and hopping cars.
But the entire process of making an automobile also utilizes hydraulic machines, especially for metal stamping.
When a car is manufactured, hydraulic machines mold sheets of metal into the appropriate shape. Using the power behind the hydraulic pressure, they trim, form, emboss and make the very parts necessary for an automobile.
Without hydraulics, manufacturing an automobile would be very difficult, indeed.
2. Aerospace Industry
Each time a plane takes off or lands, hydraulics are used. In fact, they are essential for airplanes to fly.
The science behind Pascal’s Principle, which states pressure on a fluid is equally distributed throughout that fluid, is particularly useful for large pieces of equipment like those used on planes. Systems can be included that are compact, lightweight, reliable and inexpensive-all ideal characteristics for those preparing to take to the air.
As a result, hydraulics are responsible for activating landing gear, employing flaps and using brakes.
Basic aircraft systems include:
- A pump to generate power
- Actuating cylinders, which position components correctly
- A heat exchanger to keep the hydraulic fluid at the correct temperature
- A pressure relief valve to avoid dangers involving too much pressure
- A reservoir to store the fluid
These components work together to ensure a plane’s innards function safely and reliably.
3. Marine Applications
We’ve covered cars and planes, so it probably comes as no surprise that hydraulics is also utilized in the marine industry, particularly for ocean-going vessels.
Have you ever wondered why it doesn’t take more strength to turn a cruise ship or a large boat? Hydraulics is the secret.
Most boats use a two-part system made up of a cylinder unit and a helm unit. Every time the wheel is turned, hydraulic oil travels in one of two lines to a cylinder, which retracts or pushes a rod based on the wheel’s direction.
4. Construction Work
Large construction projects would not be possible without custom hydraulics. They are used in almost all large-scale machinery.
A backhoe, for instance, utilizes hydraulics to lift large amounts of dirt or debris. The driver pushes on the oil, which allows the shovel to lift heavy loads. Without a backhoe, even small projects would take weeks to finish.
Hydraulics are even used as props to hold up unstable walls or roofs.
Aside from backhoes and props, hydraulics within the construction field is also used in brick molding machines, scissor lifts, concrete pumping, excavators and more.
Hydraulics have quite literally transformed the construction industry, allowing teams to complete assignments in less time and with less labor.
5. Agricultural Fields
The food we eat takes dedication, long hours of work and the proper equipment to make it to our plates.
But where would farmers be (and our stomachs) without the beloved three-point hitch? This piece of equipment is responsible for attaching equipment to tractors, such as plows.
The hydraulic cylinders in the hitch allow the arms to move accordingly so that the machinery can be attached.
Without this handy accessory, countless amounts of time and effort would be wasted.
Die casting shapes the metal parts we use today. Under high pressure, molten metal is forced into a reusable cavity so that it conforms to the desired shape.
There are several types of machines used in die casting, and hydraulic machines are one of the most popular. For safety reasons, it’s imperative that machinery is locked into place during the casting process.
Hydraulic cylinders or direct hydraulic pressure are used to do this.
We mentioned rollercoasters earlier, but have you ever thought how the Wicked Witch of the West disappears so easily in a puff of green smoke?
You guessed: hydraulics.
Hydraulics are used in the entertainment industry for everything from hidden platforms in stages or on sets to special effects. In fact, the 1976 version of King Kong relied on electrohydraulics to move the monstrous ape.
Trusted Custom Hydraulics
Custom hydraulics are everywhere in the world, dictating how we live.
But for the many industries that rely on hydraulics for success, finding the right parts when things go amiss can be nothing short of frustrating.
Do you need technical expertise, access to parts or an innovative solution for your business? If so, contact RG Group to discuss real and inexpensive possibilities with an expert.
May the force of hydraulics press you ever onwards.