I just took an exam and messed up the horsepower calculation acting on a pinion and got 0.059 hp (correct is 1.67 I believe). I should be fine grade wise I am simply curious about an example of something with that little horsepower. If you know of any example (as well as benchmarks for other horsepowers) please let me know.

  • $\begingroup$ I jog routinely. Sometimes on treadmills that show how much energy you produce. When I was younger I could keep a 6 miles/ hour pace for 30 minutes at 160-170 watts. now at the age of 77 the best I can do is a pace of 4.5 miles/ hour for 20 minutes at 110-120 watts. I hear some athletes can produce 300-350 watts. A good example of a low-energy machine is the hearing aides $\endgroup$
    – kamran
    Commented Apr 27 at 1:25
  • $\begingroup$ i think in high school physics in 1957, we timed people running up two flights of stairs and using about 0.5 HP $\endgroup$
    – tckosvic
    Commented May 14 at 19:44

1 Answer 1


You. You are a great example of something that in normal activity does about 50W of power, as you move around the kitchen and so on. Sure if you are walking briskly, or running or lifting heavy objects or running up stairs or cycling you might manage 10-15 times that, but in normal daily life these days that's about it.

Meanwhile that computer made of fat and sugar inside your head uses 100 W or so, and your immune system chews through a fair bit of power.

A wristwatch is a great example of a machine that runs on a tiny amount of power.

All numbers off the top of my head.

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    $\begingroup$ @kamran your comment belongs at the question, not at this answer ... please copy it to the question and delete it from this answer $\endgroup$
    – jsotola
    Commented Apr 26 at 22:12

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