hy·​drau·​lic | \ hī-ˈdrȯ-lik How to pronounce hydraulic (audio) \

Definition of hydraulic

1 : operated, moved, or effected by means of water
2a : of or relating to hydraulics hydraulic engineer
b : of or relating to water or other liquid in motion hydraulic erosion
3 : operated by the resistance offered or the pressure transmitted when a quantity of liquid (such as water or oil) is forced through a comparatively small orifice or through a tube hydraulic brakes
4 : hardening or setting under water hydraulic cement

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Other Words from hydraulic

hydraulically \ hī-​ˈdrȯ-​li-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce hydraulically (audio) \ adverb

Did You Know?

By means of a hydraulic lift, the driver can lift the bed of a dump truck with the touch of a button. He might also repair the hydraulic steering, the hydraulic brake, or the hydraulic clutch—all of which, like the lift that holds everything up, take advantage of the way liquids act under pressure. Somewhat like a pulley or a lever, a hydraulic system magnifies the effect of moderate pressure exerted over a longer distance into powerful energy for a shorter distance.

Examples of hydraulic in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Compounding the matter, gas producers now use a process called hydraulic fracturing, which pumps huge amounts of water and chemicals underground to loosen up gas reserves, and drill extensive horizontal holes to suck in gas from much wider areas. Kate Mishkin, ProPublica, "Court to Big Fracking Company: Trespassing Still Exists — Even For You," 6 June 2019 The company picked up a hydraulic press in the late 1960s, but it hasn’t upgraded since then. Maggie Menderski, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville pottery company has a new owner and a trove of forgotten art," 11 June 2018 Agents recovered two kilograms of heroin, a loaded semiautomatic pistol, and two hydraulic drug presses, according to prosecutors. Adam Sennott, BostonGlobe.com, "Norwood man convicted of heroin trafficking," 4 Apr. 2018 Experts have also tested concrete, steel rods and a hydraulic jack. Samuel Chamberlain, Fox News, "New photos show larger cracks in Miami bridge before deadly collapse," 9 Aug. 2018 And there is also a lot of hydraulic pavement, typical of Catalonia. Vanessa Lawrence, ELLE Decor, "A Mecca of Spanish Design and Food Opens in New York," 3 Apr. 2019 The APUs used toxic hydrazine to generate the hydraulic power needed to move the shuttle's elevons the muscle needed for braking and steering. William Harwood, CBS News, "John Young, legendary moonwalker and shuttle commander, dead at 87," 6 Jan. 2018 The Mexican entrance was covered by a pool table that lifted from the concrete floor with a hydraulic system. Nicole Hong, WSJ, "What El Chapo’s Trial Revealed: The Inner Workings of a $14 Billion Drug Empire," 12 Feb. 2019 That same year legislators in Albany passed a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing, the process used to wring oil and gas out of underground rock formations. Robert Bryce, WSJ, "Gas Shortages Give New York an Early Taste of the Green New Deal," 15 Feb. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hydraulic.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of hydraulic

1661, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hydraulic

Latin hydraulicus, from Greek hydraulikos, from hydraulis hydraulic organ, from hydr- + aulos reed instrument — more at alveolus

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Statistics for hydraulic

Last Updated

16 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for hydraulic

The first known use of hydraulic was in 1661

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English Language Learners Definition of hydraulic

: operated by the pressure of a fluid
: occurring or used in a hydraulic system


hy·​drau·​lic | \ hī-ˈdrȯ-lik How to pronounce hydraulic (audio) \

Kids Definition of hydraulic

1 : operated, moved, or brought about by means of water hydraulic pressure
2 : operated by liquid forced through a small hole or through a tube hydraulic brakes

Other Words from hydraulic

hydraulically \ -​li-​kə-​lē \ adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on hydraulic

Spanish Central: Translation of hydraulic

Nglish: Translation of hydraulic for Spanish Speakers

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