Horsepower meaning

hôrspouər
A unit that is used to measure the power of engines and motors. One unit of horsepower is equal to the power needed to lift 550 pounds one foot in one second. This unit has been widely replaced by the watt in scientific usage; one horsepower is equal to 745.7 watts.
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Horsepower is defined as the power that a horse gives when pulling, and it is used informally to mean power, or is the power needed to raise 550 pounds a distance of one foot in one second or the power needed to move 33,000 pounds a distance of one foot in one minute.

An example of horsepower is the informal term for the ability of a person or thing to move.

An example of horsepower is the measurement of the pulling ability of a building crane.

An example of horsepower is the measurement of the power of a motor.

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A basic unit of power in the FPS system, equal to the power needed to raise a weight of 550 pounds a distance of 1 foot in 1 second or a weight of 33,000 pounds a distance of 1 foot in 1 minute (746 watts or 42.41 British thermal units per minute)
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The power exerted by a horse in pulling.
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Effective strength.

Political horsepower; computer horsepower.

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Effective power.

My computer doesn't have enough horsepower to crunch those numbers.

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The power of one horse. With regard to computers, which are clearly not compared to horses, the term is used to refer to speed in general. For example, "that machine has a lot of horsepower" just means that it is fast by comparison to contemporary models. See MHz.
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A non-metric unit of power (symbol hp) with various definitions, for different applications. The most common of them is probably the mechanical horsepower, approximately equal to 745.7 watts.
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A metric horsepower (symbol often PS from the German abbreviation), approximately equal to 735.5 watts.
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Political horsepower.

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A unit of power in the US Customary System, equal to 745.7 watts or 33,000 foot-pounds per minute.
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The power exerted by a horse in pulling.
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Origin of horsepower

  • From horse and power, the unit originally defined as the amount of power that a horse could provide.

    From Wiktionary