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# HYDROSTATIC PRESSURE

INTRODUCTION

DEFINITION OF HYDRAULICS

Hydraulics is that branch of science, which treats of water and other fluids
that are at rest or in motion.

BRANCHES OF HYDRAULICS

## 1. Hydrostatics – the study of fluids at rest

2. Hydrokinetics – the study of pure motions in liquids
3. Hydrodynamics – the study of forces exerted by or upon liquids in motion

DEFINITION OF FLUIDS

Fluids are substances capable of flowing, having particles which easily move
and change their relative position without separation of the mass. Fluids offer
practically no resistance to change of form. They readily conform to the shape of the
solid body with which they come in contact.

DIVISION OF FLUIDS

1. Liquids
2. Gases

## 1. Specific Weight or Unit Weight – weight of a unit volume of a fluid

γ = w / v (for liquids)

where:
γ = specific weight, N/m3
w = weight, N
v = volume, m3

γ = P / RT (for gases)

where:
γ = specific weight, N/m3
P = absolute pressure, N/m2
T = absolute temperature in Degree Rankin, (°F + 460)
R = Gas constant, m/°R

## ρ = m/v (for liquids)

where:
ρ = mass density, kg/m3
m = mass, kg
v = volume, m3

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ρ = P/RT (for gases)

where:
ρ = mass density, kg/m3
P = absolute pressure
T = absolute temperature, Degree Kelvin, (°C + 273)
R = Gas Constant, (N•m)/(kg•°K)

## 3. Relation between specific weight and mass density

γ =ρ g

where:
γ = specific weight, N/m3
ρ = mass density, kg/m3
g = gravitational acceleration
= 9.807 m/s2

## 4. Relative density or specific gravity – dimensionless ratio of the unit weight

of any fluid to the unit weight of water under standard condition

## (rd)£ = (γ £/γ w) = (ρ £/ρ w)

where:
(rd)£ = relative density of any fluid, dimensionless
γ £ = unit weight of any fluid, N/m3
ρ £ = mass density of any fluid, kg/m3
γ w = unit weight of water, 9.807 N/m3
ρ w = mass density of water, 1000 kg/m3, 1 gram/cm3

5. Viscosity

## a. Dynamic or Absolute Viscosity – is that property of a fluid which

determines the amount of its resistance to shearing stress

τ = µ (∂v/∂y)
(Newton’s Equation of Viscosity)

where:
τ = shearing stress, N/m2
µ = coefficient of dynamic viscosity, (N•sec)/m2

conversion:
1 poise = gram/(cm•sec)

## b. Kinematic viscosity – the ratio of the dynamic viscosity of a fluid to

its mass density

ν = µ /ρ

where:

2
ν = kinematic viscosity, m2/sec
µ = dynamic viscosity, (N•sec)/m2
ρ = mass density, kg/m3

## 6. Cohesion – property that refers to the intermolecular attraction by which

the separate particles of the fluid are held together

## 7. Adhesion – the property of fluids which refers to the attractive force

between its molecules and any fluid substance with which they are in
contact

its free surface

## 9. Capillarity – this property of the liquids is due to both cohesion and

adhesion. If adhesion has a greater effect than cohesion, the liquid will rise
at the point where it comes in contact with another body. If cohesion is
prevalent, the liquid will be depressed

10. Vapor pressure – the pressure exerted by the vapor as evaporation takes
place within a closed space

Properties of water:

γ = 9807 N/m3
= 9.807 kN/m3
ρ = 1000 kg/m3
= 1 g/cm3
(rd) = 1.0

## 1. Unit pressure – is the amount of pressure per unit area

P = F/A

where:
P = unit pressure, N/m2
F = force, N
A = area, m2

2. Liquid pressure – the pressure at any given point in fluid at rest is equal to
the depth of liquid at that point multiplied by the specific or unit weight of
the liquid

+h h

3
P=γ h

where:
P = liquid pressure, N/m2
γ = unit weight of liquid, N/m3
h = depth of liquid, m

## 3. Pressure head – the height of a column of homogenous liquid which will

cause a given intensity of pressure

h = P/γ

Note:

free surface

## 5. Direction of resultant pressure – the pressure exerted by the liquid against

any surface is normal to the surface at any point

F
90 deg
F

90 deg

## 6. Intensity of pressure at parallel points – all point lying on a plane parallel

to the liquid surface have equal pressure intensities

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P1 = P2 = P3
h
1 2 3

7. Pascal’s Law
a. Intensity of pressure at any point – at any point in a fluid at rest,
the pressure is the same in all directions

## b. Transmission by pressure – the pressure exerted on a confined

liquid is transmitted equally and undiminished in all directions and
at right angle to every portion of the interior of the containing
vessel

## 8. Boyle’s Law – at constant temperature, the volume of a fixed quantity of

gas/air occupies is inversely proportional to pressure

P1V1 = P2V2

where:
P1 , P2 = initial and final gas/air pressures in absolute pressure
units
V1 , V2 = initial and final gas/air volumes, m3

## 9. Equivalence of pressure heads – pressure head are said to be equivalent if

they proceed the same amount of pressures

hB = [(rd)AhA] / (rd)B

## 10. Types of pressure

a. Atmospheric pressure – (Patm) – the pressure exerted by the
atmosphere at sea level and under standard condition

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Patm = 101325 Pa abs (14.70 psia)
= 10.34 m of H2O column abs
= 34 inches of H2O column abs
= 760 mm of Hg column abs
= 30 inches of Hg column abs
= 1 atmosphere

## b. Gage pressure (Pg)

i. Positive gage pressure – pressure measured above
atmospheric pressure level
ii. Negative gage pressure – pressure measured below
atmospheric pressure level. Also called suction or vacuum
pressure

## c. Absolute pressure (Pabs) – pressure measured above absolute zero

level

Pabs = Patm + Pg

where:
Pabs = absolute pressure, Pa abs
Patm = atmospheric pressure, Pa
Pg = gage pressure, Pa

## 1. Atmospheric pressure is equal to zero gage pressure

2. Pressure is gage unless specifically marked absolute with the exception of
atmosphere which is an absolute pressure unit
3. Negative gage pressure must not exceed the theoretical limit of -101325 Pa
4. Absolute pressure should not have negative values assigned to them
1 1

+Pg

-Pg
Pabs (1-1)
2 2

## Patm = 101325 Pa abs

10.34 m of water column abs
760 mm of Hg column abs
Pabs (2-2) 1 atmosphere

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MANOMETERS

## A manometer is a tube, usually bent in the form of a U, containing a liquid of known

relative density, the surface of which moves proportionally to changes of pressure.

TYPES OF MANOMETERS

## A. OPEN TYPE MANOMETERS

Is one with an atmospheric surface in one leg and capable of measuring gage
pressure.

1. PIEZOMETER – is a tube tapped into the wall of a container or conduit for the
purpose of measuring the pressure.

-Pg

air

hm
water
m
y

2. OPEN MANOMETER – consist of a bent glass tube on which one end is inserted at
the side or bottom of a vessel and a bent portion filled with a liquid of known
relative density.

y z

## 3. SINGLE TUBE MANOMETER – is one in which a large reservoir is

introduced into one leg of the bent glass tube obviate making more than
one fluid reading. The other leg may be vertical or inclined.

fluid A

m m

y h

original level

fluid B

## with atmospheric pressure in vessel m with gage pressure in vessel m

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B. DIFFERENTIAL TYPE MANOMETERS

fluid A

m n

new level

## 1. Draw a sketch of the manometer approximately to scale.

2. Decide on the fluid in meter of which the heads are to be expressed.
3. Starting with the atmospheric surface in the manometer as the point of known
pressure head. Number in order the levels of contact of fluids of different relative
densities.
4. Starting with the atmospheric pressure head, proceed from level to level, adding or
subtracting pressure heads as the elevation decreases or increases respectively, with
due regard for the relative densities of the fluids
SUGGESTED STEPS IN THE SOLUTION OF DIFFERENTIAL MANOMETER PROBLEMS

1. Number the “strategic points” indicated by the level of contacts of the fluids. Some
practice is needed in selecting the points which permit the simplest computation.
2. Starting with the unknown pressure head at one of the end points, write a continued
algebraic summation of heads progressing from point to point and equating the
continued sum to the unknown head at the alter points.
3. Solve the equation for the pressure head difference if desired.

## GUIDING PRINCIPLE IN MANOMETER PROBLEMS

h B = (rd)A hA
(rd)B
2. Pressure at points on a horizontal line are equal
3. Pressure increases (+) in going down, and decreases (-) in going up.

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HYDROSTATIC PRESSURE FORCE ON SUBMERGED SURFACES

x h
y

h h
dF
A y
h
y y
F
cg
yF reference axis of moment
cg = center of gravity cp
cp = center of pressure B

x
dA

cg
dy
cp

## A. Magnitude of the resultant hydrostatic pressure force

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“The resultant hydrostatic pressure force on any plane surface is equal
to the product of the area of the plane surface and the unit pressure at
its center of gravity.”

Let trace AB represent any plane area acted upon by a fluid and
making an angle θ (theta) with the horizontal, as shown in the figure.
Consider an element of area such that every particle is the same
distance h below the surface of the liquid. The horizontal strip shown
cross-hatched is such an area, and the pressure is uniform over this
area. Then the force acting on he area dA is equal to the uniform
intensity of pressure P times the area dA or,
F=PA
dF = P dA

where:
P =γ L h
=γ L (ysinθ )
then,
dF = γ L (ysinθ ) dA
evaluate the above differential equation to get the total force
0∫ dF = γ Lsinθ ∫ ydA
F

F = γ Lsinθ ∫ ydA
Recalling from integral calulus:
∫ ydA = Ay
= 1st moment of an area
hence,
F = γ Lsinθ (Ay)
= γ L (ysinθ ) A
where:
h = ysinθ
finally:
F = γ Lh A

where:
F = resultant hydrostatic pressure force, N
γ L = unit weight or specific weight of fluid, N/m3
h = vertical location of the center of gravity below the liquid
surface, m
A = submerged area of the plane surface, m2

## To locate this force F, proceed as in static mechanics by taking

moments, axis x-x is chosen as the intersection of the plane area and
the liquid surface, both extended if necessary. All distances y are
measured from the axis and the distance to the resultant force is
called yF, which is the distance to the center of pressure.

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By Varignon’s Theorem:

## MOMENT OF THE RESULTANT FORCE = MOMENT OF ITS COMPONENT FORCES

F(yF) = ∫ dF(y)

where:
F =γ L A ysinθ
dF =γ L ysinθ dA
then,
γ L A ysinθ (yF) = γ L sinθ ∫ y2dA
Ay (yF) = ∫ y2dA
Recall from integral calculus
∫ y2dA = Ix-x
= 2nd moment of an area
= moment of inertia
finally,
Ay (yF) = Ix-x
yF = (Ix-x) / Ay

Alternative form:

By transfer formula,
Ix-x = Icg + Ay2
Substitute in the above formula,
yF = (Ix-x) / Ay = (Icg + Ay2) / (Ay2)
yF = (Icg / Ay) + y
(yF – y) = Icg / Ay
finally,
e = Icg / Ay

where:
y = location of the center of gravity from axis 0-0, m
yF = location of the center of pressure from axis 0-0, m
e = eccentricity of the resultant pressure force or the
perpendicular distance between horizontal axes through center
of gravity and center of pressure, and lying in plane of area, m
Icg = moment of inertia of area with respect to the horizontal axis
through its center of gravity and lying in its plane, m4
Ix-x = moment of inertia of area with respect to axis 0-0, m4
A = submerged area of the plane surface, m2

## PROPERTIES OF SOME GEOMETRIC SHAPES

1. Rectangular Section

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Yo
A = bh
Icg = Ixo = (bh3)/12

cg
h Xo

2. Triangular Section
A = ½ bh
Yo y = h/3
Icg = Ixo = (bh3)/36

h
cg
Xo
y

3. Trapezoidal Section
Yo A = ½ (b1 + b2)h
y = (h/3)[(2b1 + b2) / (b1 + b2)]
b1
Icg = Ixo = (h3/36) [(b12 + 4b1b2 + b22) / (b1 + b2)]

h
cg
Xo
y

b2

4. Circular Section
Yo
A = π R2 = (π D2)/4
Icg = Ixo = (π R4)/4 = (π D4)/64

cg
D Xo

R R

5. Semi-circular Section
A = ½ π R2 = ½[(π D2)/4]
y = (4R)/3π )
Icg = Ixo = 0.1098R2

## Specific Volume – is the volume occupied by a unit mass of fluid

Vs = 1/ρ

Where:
Vs = specific volume of fluid, m3/kg

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ρ = mass density kg/m3

Surface Tension

The membrane of the skin that seems to form on the free surface of a fluid is due to
the intermolecular cohesive forces, and is known as surface tension. Surface tension is the
reason that insects are able to sit on water and a needle is able to float on it. Surface
tension also causes bubbles and droplets to take in a spherical shape, since any other shape
would have more surface area per unit volume

## Pressure inside a droplet of liquid:

P = (4σ ) / d

where:
σ = surface tension, N/m
d = diameter of the droplet, m
P = gage pressure, Pa

Capillarity (Capillary action) – is the name given to the behavior of the liquid in a thin-bore
tube. The rise or fall of a fluid in a capillary tube is caused by surface tension and depends
on the relative magnitudes of the cohesion of the liquid and the adhesion of the liquid to the
walls of the containing vessel. Liquids rise in the tubes when they wet (adhesion > cohesion)
and fall in tubes when they do not wet (cohesion > adhesion). Capillary is important when
using tubes smaller that about 3/8 inches (9.5mm) in diameter.

h = (4σ cosθ ) / (γ d)

for complete wetting, as with water on clean glass, the angle θ is 0°. Hence the formula
becomes,

h = (4σ ) / (γ d)

where:
h = capillary rise or depression, m
γ = unit weight, N/m3
d = diameter of the tube, m
σ = surface tension, Pa

Materials Angle, θ
Mercury – glass 140°
Water – paraffin 107°
Water – silver 90°
Kerosene – glass 26°
Glycerin – glass 19°
Water – glass 0°
Ethyl alcohol – glass 0°
Compressibility – also known as the coefficient of compressibility is the fractional change in
the volume of a fluid per unit change in pressure in a constant – temperature process

## β = (-∆ V/V) / (∆ p) = 1/EB

or
β = -[(dV/V) / dp]

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where:
∆ V = change in volume
V = original volume
∆ p = change in pressure
dV/V = change in volume (usually in percent)

## Bulk Modulus of Elasticity, EB, GPa

The bulk modulus of elasticity of the fluid expresses the compressibility of the fluid. It
is the ratio of the change in unit pressure to the corresponding volume change per unit of
volume

## EB = stress / strain = (∆ p) / (∆ V/V)

or
EB = -[(dp) / (dV/V)]

## SEMI-GRAPHICAL SOLUTION (APPLICABLE FOR SQUARE AND RECTANGULAR

SECTIONS ONLY

Guiding Principles

## A. Magnitude of the resultant hydrostatic pressure force

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“The magnitude of the resultant hydrostatic pressure force is equal to the volume of
the pressure distribution diagram.”

## B. Location of the resultant hydrostatic pressure force

“The resultant hydrostatic pressure force passes thru the centroid of the pressure
distribution.”

hA

A
hB

h
F G
y
B
b
PA

PB

PA

hA F

hB A

B
y
PB

h
Magnitude of F:
b
F =
volume
of trapezoidal pressure distribution diagram
F= ½ (PA + PB) (h) (b)

Where:

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PA = (∂ L) (hA)
PB = (∂ L) (hB)

Location of F:
F passes thru the centroid of the trapezoidal pressure distribution diagram

hB
h
G
F
y
B
b

PB
F

G
hB

B
y
PB

h
Magnitude of F:
b

## F= volume of triangular pressure distribution

diagram
F= ½ (PB) (h) (b)

Where:
PB = (∂ L) (hB)

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Location of F:
F passes thru the centroid of the triangular pressure distribution diagram

y = h/3

Problem Sets:

Problem 1.

## A. A closed tank contains 0.60 m of mercury (s.g. = 13.60), 1.5 m of water,

2.5 m of oil (s.g. = 0.75) and an air space above the oil. If the pressure at
the bottom of the tank is 280 kPa, what should be the reading in the gage
on the top of the tank?
B. Assuming normal barometric pressure, which pressure is the largest?
i. 6 kPa (gage)
ii. 25 mm of Hg vacuum
iii. 9.75 m of water above absolute zero
iv. 1.25 atmospheres

P1 = Patm
AIR

OIL
(s.g. = 0.75) 2.5

WATER 1.5

3
MERCURY (s.g. = 13.6) 0.6

Problem 2. 4

A. As shown in the accompanying figure below, what is the static pressure in kPa
in the air chamber?

AIR
2

OIL
1 (s.g. = 0.80) 4.0000

3 3

5.0000

Problem 3. 3.0000

WATER
Water rises to level E in the pipe
attached to the tank ABCD in the
accompanying figure below. The width of the tank normal to the paper is 2.5 m. Neglecting
the weight of the tank and the riser pipe,

## a. Determine the total force on the bottom of the tank

b. Compare the total weight of water with the result in a.

17
1

3.7000 h2 3.7000

2.5000
h1 5.7000

2 D
A

P2 = Pt Ft
FLOOR LINE
2.0000 WATER
Fb P1 = Pb
B C

R=W

6.0000

Problem 4.

## A. Show mathematically that the pressure intensity at a point of equal

magnitude in all directions are equal (Pascal’s Law of intensity of pressure
at any point)
B. Derive the expression (P2-P1) = ∂ L(h2-h1), which is the mathematical
expression of variation of pressure with depth in a liquid.

F2

A1
F1 x

A3

A2

F2

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