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Basics of Hydraulic System in Engineering

It is indeed very tough to see any industry without a slight touch of hydraulic system. Hydraulic system is crucial for various industries as well as our daily life routine, but its’ importance are occasionally unrealized by many. One of the most common hydraulic system application is in our vehicle breaking system. I’ll explain further about the breaking system later in this article. Anyway, from my previous experiences, I worked with several types of equipments and machineries employing hydraulic system. Among them are tractors, crane hoist, robots, actuators and hydraulic motor. All of them are unique, special and fasten my assignments and team’s job.
Basically, a hydraulic system can be explained as one force that is applied to one point (or piston), and is then transmitted to another point via the use of an incompressible fluid. A hydraulic system confines the liquid so that it uses the laws governing liquids to transmit power to do specific work. Figure 1 illustrates the principle of hydraulic system.
Figure 1: Principle of hydraulic drive system (source).

Often, the fluid utilized to transfer the motion is typically a type of oil. Oil is in nature incompressible and is very efficient for the transfer of force and motion. A critical point to take into account is that a hydraulic system cannot contain any air. If air bubble appears in the system then the force applied to the piston would be used to compress the air bubble, instead of going on to move the subsequent piston. As a result, it affects the efficiency of the hydraulic system.

Let’s visualize the hydraulic system closely. A simple example of a basic piston-driven hydraulic system is the braking system of our typical car (refer Figure 2). When we hit/pressed the break to slow or stop the car, the brake pedal is depressed. It then pushes on the piston in the master cylinder of the brake. Other four slave pistons in each wheel actuate to press the brake pads against the brake rotor to slow or stop the car.
Figure 2: Typical breaking system in a car (source)

Principally, these systems normally involve equipment meant to handle heavier weights. This demands more physical strength as well as higher operating pressure for the system. Such hydraulic system operating pressure ranges from a few hundred pounds per square inch (PSI) to several thousand pounds per square inch.

Hydraulic systems offer advantages over other methods of power transmission. For instance, hydraulic systems have a simple design. In many cases, complicated mechanical linkages can be replaced with a few pre-engineered hydraulic components. These systems are also more flexible. The location of component in a system is extremely versatile. Instead of sedentary mechanical elements, flexible pipes and hoses used in these systems eliminate location problems. Additionally, these systems are also much more smooth and quiet while in operation. With high efficiency and minimum friction or interference, these systems keep the cost of power transmission at a minimum.

When working with hydraulic system and its associated fluid, we cannot afford to settle for less or mediocre quality. We must use one with high quality produced/delivered by reputable companies. Numerous companies are available in the market which provides hydraulic system and extensive areas of fluid technology expertise. The company I worked with before used hydraulic and lubricant oils from Hydac for most of the equipments and machineries. It was from them I learned more about the principle and application of hydraulic system and fluid technology. I must say I truly appreciate the knowledge, skill and experience delivered during their visit and discussion. It made me a better and more mature engineer. 

posted by zaki yamani @ 9:36 AM, , links to this post

To A Glorious 2014 Year

I hope it is not too late to wish you a happy new year. Happy new year and I wish 2014 will be a successful and fruitful year for all of you. 

I have been missing from blogging regularly here recently. It has been due to my hectic daily task and me myself as a family man. 

Career wise, towards the end of 2013, I was fully occupied to prepare, defend and correct my Ph.D thesis. Bottom line, the important thing is that, Thank God, I completed my Ph.D. On top of that, I have reported duty as a lecturer on the 1st of July 2013 and I need to fulfill my responsibilities as an academician. Moreover, I am still writing several technical research papers from my Ph.D. Most of them got rejected, so I need to keep improving and sending them to other reputable journals with decent impact factor. Oh, why they keep rejecting my manuscript? I hope 2014 will see more of my manuscript accepted for publication. 


Normal human being wise, me and my family just moved to a new, bigger house, 4 days after I defended my Ph.D in the 2 hour VIVA session. Moving to a new house means more time is required to prepare the house for proper decent living. Not to mention transporting clothes and basic kitchen utilities from old house to the new house. Luckily we don't have to shift all the old furniture from the old house to the new house. The new house is furnished with new furniture.

What to expect in 2014?

First of all, I wish and hope that my family and I be granted with excellent health condition. With healthy body, we can work and aim for our goals set for 2014.

I just want to do more and better in 2014 compared to 2013. I want it to be a more fruitful year, more positive year and more successful one. Without any particular order, here are some of my career goals :
I also have my own non career related goals. They are divided into personal and family. However, it is not relevant to discuss about them here.

How about you? I would like to read your goals. Why not share them in the comment section or in the Chemical Engineering World Facebook page? The more the merrier.

 That's me wishing you HAPPY PROSPEROUS 2014... photo credited to Dr. Azizul Azri, snapped during the recent FWRC 2013 competition.

p/s: I began part of the new year with my Samsung Note 2 suddenly not working. Feeling very sad.


posted by zaki yamani @ 12:29 AM, , links to this post

The Author

zyz

I’m Zaki. I used to be a project, process and chemical engineer. Few years ago I successfully became a Chartered Engineer (IChemE) and Professional Engineer (BEM). I'm now employed as a chemical engineering educator/researcher/consultant. Hope you like reading my blog. I welcome any feedback from you. My email: zaki.yz[alias]gmail.com. TQ!


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