What is Fluidic Technology?

Fluidics--a contraction of the words “fluid” and “logic”--is a purely fluid dynamic phenomenon that involves jets, wall attachment, vorticity, venturi effects, and pressure. Logic effects and switching can be achieved using only pressurized liquids or gases--no moving parts. In the 1960’s and 70’s, fluidics were used to make “electronic” components like flip flops, valves, and bistable amplifiers. They could perform various logic functions like OR, AND, NOT, NOR, and NAND. Later, with the invention of the transistor, electronics phased out fluidic circuits. Bowles Fluidics is one of the few companies who retained the fluidic know-how. We now use this patented technology for sprays, pulsating sprays, showerheads, pulsers, valves, massaging devices and much more.

Pulsating Spray


Fan (2D) Sprays

Conventional nozzles pressurize a fluid through a specially designed orifice, producing a sheet or a fan that breaks into drops. A fluidic nozzle produces a fan by oscillating a stream or a jet over an angle. Imagine moving your garden hose rapidly, resulting in a fan spray. Fluidic sprays achieve that effect without any moving parts.

Full coverage (3D) Sprays

Most 3D sprays use a swirl nozzle to produce a conical spray. These sprays usually have circular or elliptical cross-sections and are commonly hollow. Swirling sprays are also characterized by small drops. A fluidic nozzle produces a 3D spray by either oscillating a sheet or with two interacting oscillating streams. These sprays can have rectangular, square or trapezoidal cross sections. They provide full spray coverage and are characterized by large drops.

Advantages of Fluidic Sprays

Nozzle Large Droplet Size

Fluidic sprays are characterized by large drops. Oscillating streams naturally result in larger drops than disintegrating sheets for both fan and full-coverage sprays. Large droplet size can result in better wind resistance, higher velocity, higher efficiency (or coefficient of discharge), superior impact cleaning, and better heat retention.


Oscillation frequency controls droplet size. Higher frequencies result in smaller drops and vice versa. Our fluidic circuits range from 20 – 600Hz. Mist sprays are obtained at high frequencies.

Operating pressures

Fluidic nozzles can operate fully even at very low pressures, as low as 0.5psi. They also retain their fan for a very wide range of pressures.

Nozzle Uniform Pattern

Fluidics offer coverage patterns unmatched by conventional sprays.

  • Fan sprays – Fan angles range from 15º – 360º.
  • Full-coverage sprays - Rectangular, square or trapezoidal cross sections. These sprays are defined by a fan and a thickness angle. Thickness angles range from 10º – 160º.
  • Spray distribution can be altered as per requirement. Typically, 2D sprays can range from uniform to heavy-ended; 3D sprays can range from uniform to heavy-centered.

Logic Circuits

Fluidic Logic SwitchAt the foundation of many of our current products is the core fluidic logic technology with no moving parts.  The ability to control the operating fluid with various closed feedback or input signals has found it's way into a number of Bowles products.

From mine safety breathing assistors to medical respiratory devices like nebulizers, Bowles has continued to explore and develop logic devices with some of the world's most well known companies.

Recent implementation of this technology for Bowles has commonly come in the form of complex systems.  Here we offer reduced cost, robust operation and small packaging.