All about machines: types, components, and how they work

Machines are an essential part of our lives, whether you’re familiar with them or not. Think about it—you use machines every day without even realizing it, whether it’s your washing machine, dishwasher, oven, microwave, or blender! While many people think of mechanical machines like these as the only ones around, there are actually many different types of machines out there that serve a wide variety of purposes. Let’s explore some more about what machines are and the different types you might encounter on the job or in your day-to-day life.

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In order to understand machines, it is necessary to have a basic understanding of how they work. The simplest machine is a lever, in which an object’s weight or force is used to move another object at a distance from the weight or force. The next simplest machine is a pulley, in which one rope pulls on another rope that goes over a pulley. This design helps reduce the strain on the moving rope because it transfers some of its load onto the stationary ropes.

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The third simple machine is called a wheel and axle, which uses rotational motion to transfer power through friction between two objects–the wheel and axle. In this case, torque (rotational force) applied by one object (the axle) causes movement in another object (the wheel). Machines come in many different shapes and sizes depending on what task they are designed to do.

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An example would be the pump: there are many different types of pumps such as hand pumps, piston pumps, external-acting piston pumps, liquid ring vacuum pumps, pressure vacuum pumps, centrifugal suction gas compressors, impulse blowers or fans for steam locomotives; reciprocating engines for ships; belt-driven rotary devices like clothes dryers; reciprocating devices such as printing presses; turbines driven by exhaust gases from diesel engines; gas-turbine driven propellers for ships and submarines.