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The axial piston pump with rotating swash plate.

In hydraulic systems with a working pressure above approx. 250 bar the most used pump type is the piston pump. The pistons move parallel to the axis of the drive shaft. The swash plate is driven by the shaft and the angle of the swash plate determines the stroke of the piston. The valves are necessary to direct the flow in the right direction. This type of pump can be driven in both directions but cannot be used as a hydro motor.

 

The axial piston pump with variable displacement

The animation shows how the displacement of an axial piston pump can be adjusted. In this example we use an axial piston pump with a rotating cylinder barrel and a static' swash plate. The cylinder barrel is driven by the drive shaft which is guided through a hole in the swash plate. The position (angle) of the swash plate determines the stroke of the pistons and therefore the amount of displacement  of the pump. By adjusting the position of the swash plate the amount of displacement can be changed. The more the swashplate turns to the vertical position, the more the amount of displacement decreases. In the vertical position the displacement is zero. In that case the pump may be driven but will not deliver any oil. Normally the swash plate is adjusted by a hydraulic cylinder built inside the pump housing.

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