The History of Hydraulics

Today, many of us barely give a second thought to the technological innovations that make our lives easier. But one thing that barely goes noticed has had an enormous impact on all of our lives and the way we live today, and that is hydraulics.

It is uncertain where exactly hydraulics was first invented. Historians have found evidence that the ancient Egyptians may have used them, but the word itself originates in the Greek language. The ancient Greeks were known for their pioneering inventions of the time and invented many complex creations, so it is little wonder that it may have come about in ancient Greece, as the first ever steam engine known as the Aeolipile was invented there.

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The Romans of course also are famed for their engineering prowess and one of the greatest examples of hydraulics created by the Romans can still be found in the UK landscape today – the aqueducts.

Throughout the 1800s, many notable scientists did further studies into hydraulics, including Isaac Newton, and of course William George Armstrong who is one of the most important scientists in the area of hydraulic power and many modern creations like this hydraulic power pack can be credited to him and the work he did.

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During the 20th Century, as the Industrial Revolution got going in Britain, hydraulics became even more important and played a huge role in the manufacturing and transportation process, and over in America, the California gold rush was reliant on hydraulic power.

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