A hydraulic accumulator stores fluid under pressure and can serve a number of functions within a hydraulic system. Accumulators can take a specific amount of fluid under pressure and store it. The fluid is then released when it´s required to perform a specific task in the hydraulic system. Accumulators can provide several functions, such as:
- Energy storage
- Compensation of leakage oil
- Compensation of temperature fluctuations
- Emergency operation
- Cushioning of pressure shocks which may occur at sudden switching of the valves
- Dampening vibrations
- Swell compensator (in marine hydraulics)
Adding an accumulator to a hydraulic system offers a number of advantages. In addition, it results in substantial energy savings and an increased system lifespan. Applications that require a lot of power for limited periods of time can benefit most from the use of accumulators.
Applications that utilize large flows at high speeds may use accumulators for energy storage. When required, the accumulator pushes fluid into the hydraulic circuit to add to the pump flow. When the actuators in the hydraulic system are not in motion, the accumulator will refill. Accumulators can also operate as energy sources during normal operation of the system (i.e. cushioning).
Accumulators basically comprise of two compartments: one of the compartments is filled with gas; the other compartment, which is connected to the hydraulic circuit, is filled with fluid. The accumulator shell is made of carbon steel, stainless steel or aluminum. Depending on separating elements, we can distinguish three types of hydraulic accumulators:
- Bladder accumulators
- Diaphragm accumulators
- Piston accumulators
We also provide a variety of accumulator accessories for your convenience and safety. Note that the most common type of accumulator employed in modern hydraulic systems is the nitrogen gas-loaded type.