Construction equipment refers to all vehicles and machinery designed for the purpose of the construction of buildings or any other man-made structure, and it performs tasks that were in the past impossible or difficult for humans alone to undertake by multiplying the input force so that the force exerted is much greater.
Hydraulics is the most common method for the transfer of power in construction equipment, which in layman’s terms is the transmission, control and distribution of energy and signals via pressurised liquid.
Types of construction equipment
Most people will have seen, and are able to identify, common types of construction machinery on building projects around the country. Construction is big business around the world and the UK is no exception. The UK has a huge amount of new-build estates and, while the recession has slowed the housing market somewhat, building sites are still a common sight as you travel around the country.
Here is an explanation of common forms of construction equipment you may have seen.
The crane is a huge lifting machine that’s used to move objects and materials vertically up or down, or horizontally across. It creates mechanical advantage allowing the movement of materials that wouldn’t be possible by human strength alone.
Cranes are commonly used in the transport industry as well as the construction industry for the loading and offloading of freight.
The first ever known cranes were invented by the Ancient Greeks and powered by humans or animals capable of bearing weight such as donkeys. During the middle ages, harbour cranes became popular to facilitate the construction of ships, and also to help load and offload their cargo.
With the onset of the Industrial Revolution, cranes were fashioned from cast iron and steel, which was much stronger than the wood they had previously been constructed of.
These examples of construction equipment is commonly referred to as the digger, and is used to dig trenches, holes and building foundations, as well as for demolition, forestry work and heavy lifting. Colloquialism for the digger is JCB which is the name of the main manufacturer of such machinery.
There are many types of excavator including the compact excavator, the long reach excavator, the dragline excavator, the suction excavator and the power shovel.
Although well regulated nowadays, the construction industry has in the past been a dangerous one with many injuries and deaths occurring each year through dangerous practice. It’s essential that before a person used any construction equipment, he or she must undergo the correct training so as not to put anyone at risk of injury.