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Fluid Power and Industrial/Mechanical Engineering Terms

At Custom Fluidpower we are committed to empowering industries with the best brands, products, services, and also knowledge. Explore our list of useful definitions below to learn more about fluid power engineering and industrial and mechanical engineering.

Accumulator
A chamber in which a fluid/ gas can be stored under pressure, and can be taken on system demand.

Actuator
A motor or cylinder that converts hydraulic energy into mechanical energy.

Cartridge valve 
A valve with working parts contained in a cylindrical body. The cylindrical body must be inserted into housing for use. Ports through the body cooperate with ports in the containing housing.

Compressor
A device which converts mechanical force and motion into pneumatic fluid power.

Conductor 
A component whose primary function is to contain and direct fluid.

Controller 
A device which senses a change of fluid state and automatically makes adjustments to maintain the state of the fluid between predetermined limits, e.g., pressures, temperatures, etc.

Cylinder 
A device which converts fluid power into linear mechanical force and motion. It usually consists of movable elements such as a piston and piston rod, plunger or ram, operating within a cylindrical bore.

Directional Control Valve
A valve that controls the direction of fluid flow into predetermined paths.

Fitting 
A connector or closure for fluid power lines and passages.

Flow rate 
The volume, mass or weight of a fluid passing through any conductor per unit of time.

Flow control valve
A valve which controls the rate of flow of the fluid.

Fluid capacity 
The liquid volume coincident with the "high" mark of the level indicator.

Fluid power
Fluid power is the technology that deals with energy transmitted and controlled by means of a pressurised fluid. The fluid may be either liquid, as in hydraulics, or gas, as in pneumatics.

Frequency response
The changes, under steady-state conditions, in the output variable which are caused by a sinusoidal input variable.

Hose
A flexible line or conductor whose nominal size is it’s inside diameter.

Hydraulics
Hydraulics is a topic of science and engineering subject dealing with the mechanical properties of liquids. Hydraulics is part of the more general discipline of fluid power. Fluid mechanics provides the theoretical foundation for hydraulics, which focuses on the engineering uses of fluid properties. Hydraulic topics range through most science and engineering disciplines, and cover concepts such as pipe flow, dam design, fluid control circuitry, pumps, turbines, hydropower, computational fluid dynamics, flow measurement, river channel behavior and erosion.

Hydraulic control
A method of control that is actuated by hydraulically induced forces.

Hydraulic motor 
A device which converts hydraulic fluid power into mechanical force and motion. It usually provides rotary mechanical motion.

Hydraulic valves (also see Cartridge valve) 
Properly directs the flow of a liquid medium, usually oil, through your hydraulic system.

Hydropneumatics 
Pertaining to the combination of hydraulic and pneumatic fluid power.

IECEx
IECEx is the IEC System for Certification to Standards Relating to Equipment for Use in Explosive Atmospheres. It uses quality assessment specifications that are based on International Standards prepared by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC).

Indicator, differential pressure
An indicator which signals a difference in pressure between two points in a fluid power system.

Intensifier 
A device which converts low pressure fluid power into higher pressure fluid power.

Leakage rate
The rate at which a gas or liquid passes through a barrier. Total leakage rate includes the amounts that diffuse or permeate through the material of the barrier as well as the amount that escapes around it.

Line 
A tube, pipe, or hose for conducting fluid.

Lubricator 
A device which adds controlled or metered amounts of lubricants into a fluid power system.

Manifold
A chamber that has several outlets through fluid or gas is distributed or gathered to or from different parts of the system.

Motor
A device which converts other energy forms into rotary mechanical energy.

Pascal's Law 
A pressure applied to a confined fluid at rest is transmitted with equal intensity throughout the fluid.

Piston rod
The element transmitting mechanical force and motion from the piston.

Pneumatics 
Pneumatics (from the Greek term pneumatikos, coming from the wind) is the use of pressurised gas to do work in science and technology.

Pressure
Force per unit area, usually expressed in pounds per square inch (bar).   Include the PSI and BAR conversion chart.

Pump
A device which converts mechanical torque and motion into hydraulic fluid power.

Separator
A device whose primary function is to isolate contaminants by physical properties other than size. (Separators remove gas from liquid medium or remove liquid from gaseous medium).

Shrinkage
Decreased volume of seal, usually caused by extraction of soluble constituents by fluids followed by air drying.

Silencer 
A device for reducing gas flow noise. Noise is decreased by tuned resonant control of gas expansion.

Valve 
A device which controls fluid flow direction, pressure or flow rate.

Valve actuator 
The valve part(s) through which force is applied to move or position flow-directing elements.

Read through our list of glossary definitions to get a better understanding of fluid power. Contact us if you have any further enquiries. 

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