With the world of automation growing in popularity, more and more industries are adopting hydraulic power to streamline productivity in their operations. Fluid power systems are widely used and ideal when heavy force or torque is involved, such as crushing or pressing materials, digging, lifting, and moving large amounts of earth. Even though it is not as popular as electromechanical energy, fluid power has many unmistakable advantages that make it ideal for a slew of industries.
For industries that haven’t made the leap into innovating their operations with hydraulics, we want to highlight several advantages of implementing hydraulic power to automate and expedite your operations. Instead of using electricity as their power source, companies are turning to hydraulics for a safer power source. Despite being used all over the world, electricity can be incredibly hazardous especially in certain environments or conditions. In hazardous areas such as those that deal with flammable fumes or liquids, a single spark is all that is needed to set the whole operation ablaze. Hydraulics reduce the chance of sparks leading to fires because the sole element producing the energy is pressurized fluids.
Hydraulic systems are also a much more efficient transmitter of power. The use of simple levers and buttons makes it easy to start, stop, accelerate and decelerate hydraulic power, allowing for proximate control. Using solely fluid power, hydraulic systems are without the excessive gears, pulleys, or levers that electric motors have. Although hydraulic motors lack those components, that does not mean they can’t handle the load that an electric motor can. In fact, they are almost identical.
Hydraulic motors are also much smaller than electric motors. With a hydraulic motor’s high horsepower-to-weight ratio, you could probably hold a 5-hp hydraulic motor in the palm of your hand, but a 5-hp electric motor might weigh 40 lb or more.
Hydraulic systems smooth out energy requirements with accumulators. These simple devices store energy in the form of fluid under pressure and release at any speed when needed. This means that hydraulic power also saves energy when machines need to move slowly. Most electric motors struggle to run efficiently when running at slower speeds. Electric motors can be inefficient to gear down due to the motion of their gearboxes.
For the most part, hydraulic systems are simple, safe, and efficient power sources, because they use fewer moving parts with less hazardous elements compared to electrical systems. Hydraulic power packs can also be custom-built, making them versatile for use in a range of industries. Contact the hydraulic experts at PHC to learn more about how your operations can benefit from hydraulic power and a custom hydraulic power system.