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Thrust Pressure

Last updated date: 23rd Apr 2024
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What is Thrust Pressure?

Did you enjoy floating around in swimming pools when you were young? Have you observed how delighted a child is when he sees his little toys floating in the water? He plays so many games with them! Have you found yourself wondering how objects float in water? What is this phenomenon all about? This is not, there’s most! Let’s unravel the secret of thrust and pressure which makes so much in this world possible. 

Thrust Pressure 

The pressure that is applied on a wooden block in a direction perpendicular to it, is known as Thrust. When a continuous force is applied to an object against the body that it is in contact with, it is known as pressure. If we have to understand the difference clearly, then thrust is the force being exerted on the object while pressure is the force acting on the object per unit area. 

Hence Thrust is measured by the unit “N” and pressure is denoted by the unit “Nm raised to the power of -2.” 

Fluid Thrust

One day, a boy was playing with his cricket ball that suddenly fell into the bucket of water. A boy asked his mother why this ball stays at the surface of the water instead of sinking to the bottom? His mother replied it’s because the pressure exerted on the ball keeps the ball on the plane surface.

So, fluid thrust and pressure is the phenomenon that keeps the ball on the plane surface. This can also be called a hydrostatic thrust on a plane surface of the object in the fluid.

This type of situation comes when the upthrust force or the thrust becomes equal to the weight of the ball. So, the total normal force exerted by the liquid on the object is called the fluid thrust.

What is the Magnitude of Fluid Thrust?

Solids exert pressure on liquids due to their sheer weight. An upthrust is equal to the weight of the liquid that gets displaced by an object. Thus Upthrust = volume of the body sinking in the fluid x density of the fluid x acceleration due to gravity. 


Fb = vpg. Fb = upthrust

v= volume of the body sunk in the fluid

p = density of the fluid

g = acceleration due to gravity 

Similarly, a fluid also exerts pressure on the walls of the container it is enclosed in. This fluid pressure is directly proportional to the depth and density of the fluid and it depends on g, which is the acceleration due to gravity. However, at certain places, its value remains constant. 

P (Fluid Pressure) = h (height of vertical column) x d (density of fluid) x g (acceleration due to gravity)

Examples on Thrust

  • School bags have larger straps so that the pressure exerted on shoulders is less.

  • Cutting nails is an example of thrust.

  • Sucking a cold drink through a straw.

  • Breathing

  • If we look at an example of thrust and that is building construction.

  • Pushing an empty vessel into the water, it experiences the buoyant force.

  • Pushing a cork into the water, it experiences the buoyant force.

Examples on Pressure

  • The best example for the thrust is Knives.

  • We see that the edge of the knife is very small, which means the force exerted by it is very large and this force on the area is termed pressure.

  • Doctors use a syringe to take blood for blood tests. The pressure of the blood forces the liquid (blood) to move into the syringe when its plunger is withdrawn.

  • When air is seized out of a drinking straw, the air pressure inside it reduces, and the atmospheric pressure outside forces the liquid (a drink) to go inside the straw.

  • Skis have a huge area to decrease the pressure on the snow, which assures that the skis do not sink into the snow too far.

  • The pressure in the studs on the soles of sports shoes of footballers are high enough for them to sink into the ground, which gives extra grip.

  • A vaccum cleaner device has a fan fixed inside it which creates a low pressure inside it. Consequently, air and dirt particles are captured by force into the device.

Applications of Thrust and Pressure

  • Let’s say, you cut an apple with a knife, and if you observe one thing the area of an apple is large, which makes the cutting easier.

  • The soles of football shoes have spikes that allow the easy movement of players on wet mud. These spikes reduce the area of contact and increase the pressure on the track. This provides a better grip on the ground.


The force applied to the object is called the thrust and when the liquid applies thrust to an object and makes it flow over it, such kind of thrust is the fluid thrust.

FAQs on Thrust Pressure

1. Describe the Relationship Between the Thrust and the Pressure.

We know that the pressure is the thrust per unit surface, which plays an important role in every real-life situation. 

When the luggage is heavy, the force acting per unit area decreases with broad straps of the handles. Hence lesser pressure eases a person holding this luggage.

Similarly, the lesser surface area of the nails or simply the pointed tips shift a larger force exerted on them and helps the easy fixing of them in walls. As pressure is force per unit area, its units are newton per meter square.

Here, one meter per meter square is termed Pascal (Pa) after the scientist named Blaise Pascal. The pressure exerted by solids relies more on their weight and surface area through which the weight acts.

2. What is the Thrust in a Rocket Engine and a Jet?

Thrust is a reaction force that can be expressed quantitatively by Newton's third law. When a body or a system expels or accelerates mass in one direction, the accelerated mass will cause a force of equal magnitude but in the direction opposite to one that is applied to that system.

The force that causes an object to move ahead is the thrust.

Thrust in a jet or rocket engine develops as a result of the reaction to the ejection of exhaust gases from the rear of the engine. Thrust in a propeller occurs due to the spinning of the propeller blades that pushes air or water in a certain direction.

3. What are fluid thrust and pressure? 

Upward thrust exerted by the fluid on the body which is submerged in it is called upthrust or buoyant force. This property of the liquid is buoyancy. Pressure is exerted by the fluid on the walls of the container or space in which it is closed. It is natural for all objects to experience buoyancy or a sense of lightness when they are floating on fluids, including us! As we have seen, fluid thrust and pressure have their own formulae that represent these phenomena.

4. What are some examples of thrust in daily life?

Here are some wonderful common examples of thrust and pressure that we experience in daily life - 

  • A ball or toys staying on the surface of the water instead of sinking to the very bottom

  • Cutting nails is a good example

  • The straps of school bags and laptop bags are made wider so that there is less thrust on our shoulders

  • When you push an empty vessel or a small cork or any such object into water, it experiences a buoyant force

  • Breathing in and out is a natural, moment to moment example

5. What are some examples of pressure in daily life?

Here are some practical examples of pressure that we get to see in daily living - 

  • A knife exerts greater pressure on the objects it cuts

  • Fluid pressure of blood forces it to move into the syringe during blood tests

  • Dust and dirt particles being captured by a vacuum cleaner is another example

  • Sports shoes have certain studs on their soles that give us an excellent grip on the ground when undertaking activities like trekking or sports like football.

6. How can Vedantu aid us in our preparations for Physics?

Physics is a practical, awe-inspiring yet competitive subject! It has many topics, formulae and theories to be understood and memorized which can get confusing for the student. However nothing is ever impossible. Vedantu has free resources, prepared by its excellent panel of teachers for the use of over 40,000+ students of the country. One of the best techniques to study subjects like physics is to note down daily-life examples for each of these topics. It makes the topics easier to understand and memorize. One can also keep a separate notebook for the formulae and equations in physics. Vedantu has resources such as Revision notes, Important questions and articles which can aid immensely in such preparations.

7. What are the applications of thrust and pressure?

Some of the applications of thrust and pressure are as follows - 

  • Using a knife to cut large areas of fruits and vegetables makes the job easier

  • Spikes on sports shoes provide excellent grip even on muddy grounds

  • Bags can be made even more student-friendly with the help of the thrust principle

  • Fluid thrust and air thrust is utilized in creating various advanced machinery 

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