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Words nearby hydrostatic pressure
What is hydrostatic pressure?
Hydrostatic pressure is the pressure exerted by a fluid at rest due to the force of gravity. It’s the pressure you feel when you dive to the bottom of a swimming pool.
Hydrostatic pressure applies to all fluids, meaning all liquids and gases (a fluid is any substance that can flow and change its shape). Hydrostatic is a word used to refer to a fluid that is not in motion. So, hydrostatic pressure means the pressure “inside” a non-moving fluid—not the pressure exerted by, say, the water coming out of a fire hose.
Hydrostatic pressure affects many crucially important aspects of modern society, including staying safe in space and deep water. Also plumbing.
Why is hydrostatic pressure important?
That moment in every submarine movie when they go too deep and the walls start to cave in? Yep, hydrostatic pressure. In water, for every 33 feet you go down, the pressure increases by 1 bar, or 14.5 pounds per square inch! The lower you go in a fluid, the more intense the hydrostatic pressure gets. That’s because gravity pulls on the substance at a constant rate. Whether you’re in a swimming pool or the depths of the ocean, the hydrostatic pressure is greatest at the bottom because of the weight of all the water above. In other words, the deeper you go, the more water there is above you to press down.
Density also plays a role. The more dense a fluid is, the greater its hydrostatic pressure is. There’s a precise formula for this: P = r * g * h, where P is pressure, r is the density of fluid, g is the acceleration of gravity, and h is the height of the fluid above.
Hydrostatic pressure is why deep-sea diving requires special safety equipment. Our bodies are not specialized for the high hydrostatic pressure of the deep ocean. Instead, we’re optimized to operate at the lower hydrostatic pressure of the air at the surface of Earth—1 bar. The hydrostatic pressure of air also changes depending on elevation, which is why the air is “thinner” at higher elevations (like at the tops of mountains or in an airplane).
Remember: any static fluid (air, water, helium, sulfuric acid, root beer) has hydrostatic pressure, and we see it in action all the time in the world around us. Hydrostatic pressure is why oil floats on water, and why bubbles float to the surface of your root beer: gravity exerts a higher pressure on the denser substance, which pushes the less dense substance to the top. Hydrostatic pressure is also important for our bodies—it’s crucial to processes like blood flow.
Did you know ... ?
Hydrostatic pressure is one reason (along with the lack of oxygen) why it’s not safe for humans to travel unprotected in space. You rely on hydrostatic pressure to keep your lungs at the right inflation and to keep the water in your body from vaporizing.
What are real-life examples of hydrostatic pressure?
Hydrostatic pressure affects all kinds of fluids, including those that we spend a lot of time in: air and water. Here are some more details about how that works.
The Lampert's Sea Cucumber moves around using its water vascular system that operates by hydrostatic pressure. pic.twitter.com/r86Y2sYXqb
— GonnaDive.com (@GonnaDive) February 9, 2016
My life follows the hydrostatic pressure law. When it goes down, pressure increases.
— Bryan See (@bryan_see0102) September 29, 2019
What other words are related to hydrostatic pressure?
You’re about to scuba-dive. Where will the hydrostatic pressure be at its greatest?
A. 5 feet below the surface of the water.
B. 50 feet below the surface of the water.
C. 500 feet below the surface of the water.
D. 5,000 feet below the surface of the water.
Example sentences from the Web for hydrostatic pressure
Are you seeing more commercial pressure from academic presses for historians to sexy it up a bit?
Like Sony Entertainment's The Interview, political pressure delayed the arrivale of foreign films in Korea.Propaganda, Protest, and Poisonous Vipers: The Cinema War in Korea|Rich Goldstein|December 30, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The 2014 midterm elections are just months behind us, but already Flake feels the pressure of the 2016 presidential elections.Can This Republican Bring the GOP Back to Its Senses on Immigration?|Tim Mak|December 29, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Therefore, some Democrats are under pressure to take policy actions their union allies oppose.
Does any of that come from being attuned to the pressure of that need to entertain?Daphne Merkin on Lena Dunham, Book Criticism, and Self-Examination|Mindy Farabee|December 26, 2014|DAILY BEAST
He held it, but it was without pressure; without recognizance of the delight with which he once grasped it.The Pastor's Fire-side Vol. 3 of 4|Jane Porter
Under the internal pressure his whiskers stood on end and his face grew red.The Bondboy|George W. (George Washington) Ogden
With him one is at high pressure all the time, and I have gained a good many more ideas from him than I can work up in a hurry.Music-Study in Germany|Amy Fay
Mr. Brown seizes the proffered member, and gives it as hearty a pressure as the publicity of the occasion will permit.Physiology of The Opera|John H. Swaby (AKA "Scrici")
This may be done by taking the humming tone and bringing to bear upon it a strong pressure of energy.Expressive Voice Culture|Jessie Eldridge Southwick