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(mechanical engineering)
A vertical wheel on a horizontal shaft that is made to revolve by the action or weight of water on or in containers attached to the rim.



the simplest hydraulic engine, driven by the power of flowing water. The waterwheel has been used since the most ancient times in the irrigation systems of Egypt, India, China, and other countries, and later for driving water mills, machinery, and devices used in small-scale production. Its major shortcomings are low power, low frequency of rotation, inefficiency, and bulkiness.

References in periodicals archive ?
The farmers train their bulls on the waterwheel with drumbeats.
The pull of a working waterwheel led chartered engineer Tony Coverdale to join the Saltford Brass Mill Project, a group of volunteers that care for the Somerset scheduled ancient monument.
Historians are not sure when waterwheels were first used, but they were in use in ancient Greece several centuries BC.
It is thought the 1832 built Manor Mill at Kirkburton once housed the biggest waterwheel on mainland Britain.
Part of the restoration was the installation of an original waterwheel and an Archimedes' screw.
The famous waterwheels, which are as much a part of the visitor experience as they are a part of the lifeblood of the oasis, were originally introduced by the Ptolemies in the third century BC.
It is not simply a matter of lowering a waterwheel into a fastflowing stream or river.
The cast iron waterwheel at Gelli Newydd today isn't the farm's original waterwheel.
Many waterwheels were added during the Safavid Dynasty (1501-1722 CE).
They were praying like waterwheels as the sails fell limp and sagged.
The beginnings of such a tension between efficient models of balance and dynamism can be seen in the debate over waterwheels in the eighteenth and early nineteenth century.
Windmills and waterwheels explained; machines that fed the nation.