Pressure Gauges: Measurement Units, Applications, and Explanations

A pressure gauge is a fluid intensity measurement device. Pressure gauges are required for the set-up and tuning of fluid power machines, and are indispensable in troubleshooting them.

Pressure gauges and their uses

There are two types of pressure gauges – instruments and equipment. Instruments are fixed for use in measurement and do not have an interface to the instrumentation system. Examples of such instruments include pressure gauge instruments, both with manifold pressure monitors and with piezoelectric pressure gauges. Piezoelectric pressure gauges are pressure gauge instruments with valves or vane functions used for measuring and controlling fluid velocity with actuation of piezoelectric actuators. Pressure gauge instruments with special hoses interface with pressure measurement systems to allow measurement of pressure at various points inside the system. Read Report Overview @

Types of pressure gauges

Manual pressure gauge: This type of gauge is typically used to measure pressure between two fluid sources. Electric pressure gauge: This type of gauge is used for measuring the pressure of one fluid against the other fluid source in combination with an electronic pressure transducer. Hydraulic pressure gauge: These gauges are used to measure pressure between two fluid sources in combination with an electric transducer. Flow gauges: These gauges are used to measure the amount of water, oil, or other fluids that flow through a fixed-size channel. Others: These are often used to measure the pressure of one fluid in combination with an electric transducer and the flow rate of another fluid in a fixed-size channel.

Pressure gauges as measurement units

The most commonly used fluid intensity measurement units are hertz, microhertz, microsecond, nanosecond, and nanoseconds. When there is little detail regarding the instrument, they are referred to as meters. In many applications, where data is so voluminous that simply counting the number of dial pulses produced is insufficient, pressure gauges are referred to as kilopascals (kPa). Pressure gauge applications Pressure gauges are used for measuring fluid flows and pressures in applications such as water flow meters, steam pressure and temperature meters, and flow metering. Atmospheric pressure pressure gauges Atmospheric pressure gauges measure atmospheric pressure and flow rate. In meteorological applications, pressure gauges used in meteorological measurement units.

Pressure gauge applications

Pressure gauges are used for both direct and indirect measurement of a fluid pressure. Common pressure measurement applications are in the fields of process control (such as for instance monitoring pressure in pipes), and flow measurement (for instance to measure flow rates and composition of liquids, gases and slurries).

Pressure gauges and their operation

A pressure gauge measures pressure. Pressure in terms of barometric pressure is measured with a mercury column, barometric pressure is measured using a mercury barometer. On the other hand, with vacuum gauge, an air pressure drop of 100 points is measured while reading a reading. A gauge is made of a thin glass diaphragm attached to a metal float, forming a diaphragm vacuum gauge. A condenser atomizes air which leads to pressure drop or vacuum at the base of the gauge column. While the pressure varies with the height of the diaphragm, the size of the gauge cylinder makes reading of the pressure column easier. The scale is curved at the top and bottom of the cylinder to enable reading at any height. The end of a gauge is the terminal end of the float, the base of the gauge cylinder.


The purpose of this article is to introduce the basic components of a fluid pressure gauge and to introduce some of the key terminology in pressure gauge applications. This short article serves as a useful review for anyone needing to develop an understanding of pressure gauges in machine tool applications. It also serves as a primer to the different types of pressure gauge. Hopefully, it will help readers create a simple glossary of key terms for machine tool fluid power control systems. Vic Dehm is the author of the shop machine tool manual Valves & Measures for the ASME A44. He is also the author of the upcoming book on Valves & Measures in Machine Tools. Both are available at

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