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Question about hydraulics and mechanics

  1. May 1, 2014 #1
    I was just wondering if any Mechanical Engineers could answer me this. You know how cranes and prototype robotic limbs move but at a really slow pace? And when a crane closes its arm, it doesn't do it quickly but really slowly. In the future, will we be able to overcome that limitation and allow contraptions to move at a high speed?

    Think of you clenching your first or swinging your arm really rapidly, will we be able to build cranes or artificial limbs to do the same thing? Will hydraulics ever become powerful enough to withstand the heaviness of an object? Or is this just something that can't be advanced? Like a physical limitation problem? Will Mobile Suit Gundam robots be possible someday or not?
  2. jcsd
  3. May 2, 2014 #2


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  4. May 2, 2014 #3
    It's not just the problem of moving it quickly, it's stopping it quickly also. A hydraulic excavator for example simply stops the hydraulic flow, and the momentum of the arm and load is absorbed into the equipment. Move it faster and there is more load to absorb...with extreme results sometimes. It's a trade-off of design and function.

    Here is an example of a high-speed hydraulic machine...
    It will vibrate 900lbs 5" at 50hz on a 650lb table.


    The first machine in the PDF is the actual machine in the lab I work at, literally 30 feet away.
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