Fluid Power Basics

Students learn about the fundamental concepts important to fluid power, which includes both pneumatic (gas) and hydraulic (liquid) systems. Both systems contain four basic components: reservoir/receiver, pump/compressor, valve, cylinder. Students learn background information about fluid power—both pneumatic and hydraulic systems—including everyday applications in our world (bulldozers, front-end loaders, excavators, chair height lever adjustors, door closer dampers, dental drills, vehicle brakes) and related natural laws. After a few simple teacher demos, they learn about the four components in all fluid power systems, watch two 26-minute online videos about fluid power, complete a crossword puzzle of fluid power terms, and conduct a task card exercise. This prepares them to conduct the associated hands-on activity, using the Portable Fluid Power Demonstrator (teacher-prepared kits) to learn more about the properties of gases and liquids in addition to how forces are transmitted and multiplied within these systems.