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Hydraulic Fundamentals

Pressure The basic definition of pressure is force per unit area. As commonly used in hydraulics and in this reference book, it is expressed in bar or pounds per square inch (psi). In order to make calculations involving fluid pressure, the measurements must relate to some reference pressure. Commonly, this reference pressure is theAtmospheric Pressure, the force exerted on a unit area by the weight of the atmosphere. At sea level, atmospheric pressure is 1.01 bar (14.7 pounds per square inch). Using atmospheric pressure as a zero reference, Gage Pressure is a measure of the force per unit area exerted by a fluid. The unit measure is bar or psig. A gage pressure above atmospheric pressure is positive; gage pressure below atmospheric pressure is negative, or a vacuum. Pressure measured relative to a perfect vacuum—the lowest possible pressure—is referred to as Absolute Pressure. Absolute pressure will always be positive. It equals atmospheric pressure plus the gage pressure and is measured in units of psia.

For the purposes of this reference book. solids. and gases. Specific gravity of a fluid is the ratio of its density to the density of water.Fluid Fundamentals Fluids include liquids. Since it is a ratio. density is 1. The density of a fluid changes with temperature. and mixtures of liquids. the terms fluid and liquid are both used to mean a pure liquid or a liquid mixed with gases or solids that acts essentially like a liquid in a pumping application. Example: Specific gravity = 80 lb/62.282 . gases. Example: If weight is 36.28 g/cm3 (80 lb/cu ft).36 kg (80 lb). it has no units associated with it. often expressed in units of grams per cubic centimeter or pounds per cubic foot.4 lb or. Density or specific weight of a fluid is its weight per unit volume. Specific gravity = 1.

Vertical distance = 5.23 P = 0.1 x 1.4 P=Zx x S.49 x 0.23. the equation is rearranged: Z = P static Density H20 x S.G.433 x 1. A Unit of Measure Metric English 2 P kg/cm psi Z meters feet 3 density of H20 1000 kg/m 62.59 psi To obtain pressure in elevation units.23 P = 9.49 m (18 ft). the pressure difference between any two points is in direct proportion to the vertical distance between two points.000 cm /m 144 in2/ft2 Example: Calculate pressure difference between two points.G 10.G. specific gravity = 1.4 lb/ft 2 2 A 10. x A .000 P = 5.Relation of Pressure to Elevation KEY P = static pressure Z = vertical distance A = constant In a static liquid (a body of liquid at rest). This pressure difference is due to the weight of the liquid and can be calculated by multiplying the vertical distance by the fluid density (or vertical distance x density of water x specific gravity of the fluid).6753 kg/cm2 English 62.G 144 P = 18 x . Metric 1000 P=Zx x S. In commonly used units: P (static) = Z x Density H2O x S.

95 English 85 x 144 Z= = 206.95.4 x . Suction lift—The negative pressure on a pump inlet. Total head—The total pressure difference between the inlet and outlet of a pump in operation.Example: A pressure gauge reads 5. Discharge head—The outlet pressure of a pump in operation.97 x 10.95 Static head—The hydraulic pressure when the liquid is at rest. What is the height of the equivalent column of fluid that would produce that same pressure? Metric 5.5 ft 62.9 m 1000 x . Inlet head—The positive pressure on a pump inlet. head unit).97 kg/cm2 (85 psi). Friction head—The pressure loss due to frictional losses in flow. . Pressure head—A pressure measured in equivalent head units. Velocity head—The energy in a fluid due to its velocity (e. The fluid has specific gravity of 0.g.000 Z= = 62.