Applications of hydraulic and pneumatic engineering have literally revolutionised the industrial scenario. So much so, right from the day-one when the utility of French scientist Blaise Pascal’s theory was given a try in mid-1660s and a century later the British innovator Joseph Barmah conceptualised his innovation of press, hydraulic solutions have streamlined the process of almost all the products and services. And today, this science of fluid-based dynamics can be witnessed or experienced in every other activity around us. Be it on the ground, up in the sky or over the river and sea including underwater, there is an application of hydraulic technology in operation.
Over the past couple of centuries, the never-ending study and research in this stream of engineering have resulted in the development of thousands of concepts and products to facilitate the functioning of a system based on hydraulics. One of them is the electro hydraulic actuator. EHA in short, it is a fully self contained actuation system that is energised by an electric source and transforms an input command signal into motion. It has been extensively used for the operation of wide range of systems.
The EHA is widely used in the following arenas among others: Read more
Hydraulic technology has ushered the ‘minimum effort, maximum result’ concept in almost every other industrial activity. A ready example is excavation of earth for basement at the construction site of a building. In contrast to the manpower and man-hours spent in executing this task that would have prolonged for over ten days at a stretch, a hydraulically operated excavator does the same job in a single day.
The key element in a hydraulic system is the cylinder, the mechanical actuator, aptly referred as hydraulic motor. There are two versions. Single acting hydraulic cylinders which are simple in design as well as economical and the double acting cylinders. While the single action cylinders function with fluid on only one side of the piston, the latter have a port at each end that are lubricated and supplied with hydraulic fluid for both the retraction and extension action.
By and large, the single action cylinders are found in almost all the steam and petrol or diesel driven IC (internal combustion) engines and also steam turbines, pumps, presses and ramps. The following are the main parts of a cylinder and these are designed and manufactured with utmost precision in which specifications could be as minute as 4 to 16 of a microinch: Read more
Almost the entire range of machinery and thousands of other systems or appliances function on account of linear actuators incorporated in their design. It is the actuator that generates motion and lends momentum to an engineered system. Depending on the application such as whether it should be rotary, pull, push, lift, hoist, drop, telescopic or to and fro, the actuator is designed and manufactured. The power source in it also varies such as manual, electric, air pressure, hydraulic, pneumatic, piezoelectric or ultrasound among others.
In the design, an actuator for standard systems usually has the motor as a separate cylinder attached to its side, either parallel or perpendicular. The motor is attached to the end of the actuator for energising the system. Compact actuators have specially designed motors that try to fit the motor and actuator into the smallest possible shape.
The actuators provide a safe, quiet and clean movement with accurate and regulated motion. They are energy efficient and have a long lifetime with little or no maintenance. Incorporating an actuator is very easy as compared to other energisers such as hydraulic systems. Space wise, it takes least possible space since there is no involvement of pumps or hoses in the system. Apt functioning of a system or a product depends on the actuators adaptability to a wide range of specific of applications. Read more