Hydraulics have a very long history, having been used in Ancient Greece and Ancient Egypt. It's no wonder that the hydraulic system - deceptively simple in design, but incredibly powerful, cost-efficient and easy to maintain - has withstood the test of time, still being used frequently today. However, one of the cornerstones of the hydraulic system is the cylinder. The first hydraulic cylinder supplier came into being in the 1600s, changing how we create force forever.
Traditionally, water was used to power a hydraulic system, pushing cogs and levers to create movement and motion. In the modern age a hydraulic cylinder supplier will use pressurised fluid (usually oil) to create the same energy that water once did.
In the 1600s a physicist - Blaise Pascal - discovered that pressure placed on a confined fluid could be used to disperse force equally in all directions. Just under a century later, Blaise Pascal's theory was put into action by Daniel Bernoulli, who used it to pressurise water in pumps and mills.
However it was sixty years later when the first true hydraulic cylinder supplier came to be, when Joseph Bramah patented the first hydraulic press in England. This was the start of the industrial revolution, with printing presses, cranes and all manner of other machines being automated for the first time.
After time it was found that pressurised fluid was better than water for the purpose of hydraulics, as water is corrosive. However oil, which is generally the pressurised fluid used in a hydraulic cylinder by a supplier or manufacturer these days, has more benefits than being non-corrosive. Compared to water it is also denser, and able to handle higher loads. Unlike water, it also resists evaporation and remains cooler under the high hydraulic pressure.
The use of pressurised fluid has enabled hydraulic cylinders to become more powerful and advanced, capable of exerting higher levels of force against heavier objects. Hydraulic cylinders are now used in a wide variety of different applications in various industries and sectors all over the world, from moving heavy objects on construction sites, to building skyscrapers, to controlling ships and submarines at sea, to drilling and mining, to manufacturing in large factories. The possibilities are seemingly endless, and still growing as we continue to make advancements. Perhaps this constant innovation is why hydraulic systems are still in use today, despite being around since ancient times.
Fluid power is able to provide up to ten times the power of an electric motor, and because of that immense power today hydraulic cylinders are used in many large vehicles, such as trains and ships. It is clear that the hydraulic system is not going anywhere, with its immense strength, power and how precisely it can be controlled for lifting, pulling and creating force. With its constantly innovative changes and evolutions, who knows what applications and industries hydraulic cylinders will be used for in the future?