The web defines a hydraulic system as a mechanism operated by the resistance offered or pressure transmitted when a liquid is forced through a small opening or tube. Hydraulics is a branch of applied science and engineering and an extension of pneumatics. Hydraulic systems are not a recent phenomenon but have a history dating back to the times of the ancient Greeks, Chinese and ancient kingdoms of Anuradhapura in Sri Lanka. Hydraulics has been a major part in the history of mankind and has helped in its prosperity and development for thousands of years.
In today’s day and age hydraulic systems have made great advances been able to sustain human civilizations in vast areas, its importance can be absorbed from the fact that Pundit Nehru once called them ‘The New Temples of India’. Hydraulics systems are in use everywhere from the brakes in your cars to the largest, most magnificent of dams. Hydraulics have helped in bringing water to places never thought possible, it has enhanced our ability to settle in places away from major rivers and seas and explore the hinterland. The most important contribution of hydraulic systems has been in the field of agriculture and hydro electricity.
A hydraulic project is usually very expensive and time consuming which makes it difficult for researchers to test theories and conduct experiments. Hydraulic structures like dams, barrages, canals and bridge structures are very expensive and require lot of maintenance thus rendering it impossible for field engineers to see their functioning. In light of such a problem it has become necessary for engineers to conduct hydraulics model study in the controlled environment of a laboratory to understand and improve the functioning of these hydraulic structures. Hydraulics model study uses a prototype of the original structure in the laboratory to make various experiments and conduct studies.
It is a widely accepted fact among hydraulic engineers that hydraulics model study is not only essential but a necessity which allows them to study the actual structure before it is constructed in its entirety, look out for any flaws and improve on the design of the model. Such study also helps in the future research and development of better hydraulic systems. There are so many advantages from such type of modeling and study. First, it involves a comparatively lower investment with comparatively higher returns. Second, such a study does save the whole project from unexpected failures. Third, if everything during the study and modeling phase goes according to plan it really boosts the confidence of investors and designers. And finally, it can propose solutions to any sort of problems in the new and old projects. This study is one of the important tools for engineers, designers and investors.
THE IMPORTANCE OF HYDRAULICS MODEL STUDY