In an aircraft, what would be the potential effect of not having an accumulator in the hydraulic system?
Accumulators act as storage for flow. At times of peak flow demand, the accumulator delivers a large flow supply at nominal pressure until its oil has been used up, after which the maximum flow is the pump flow. The same functionality that a capacitor or a battery has in an electric system.
If there are no accumulators installed:
- Peak hydraulic power is greatly reduced: peak flow supply equals the pump flow, and pressure drops when the pump supplies high flow.
- Pressure surges are high when the pump is running and demand suddenly stops, the accumulator evens out the pressure peak, again like how a capacitor functions. (From @Gerry comment).