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Benefits of Mastering fluid dynamics

Apr 27

Mastering fluid dynamics opens doors to working with rocket engines, wind turbines and air conditioning systems. It also provides insights into ocean currents, weather patterns and plate tectonics. The discipline encompasses several subdisciplines, including aerodynamics (the study of gases in motion) and hydrodynamics (the study of liquids in motion).

Flow of matter is a fundamental principle. The fluids of the natural world—from water to blood—and the manufactured materials that make our lives easier—from jet engines and wind turbines to the air we breathe and the vehicles we drive—are all subject to the same laws. These principles are mathematically represented by the familiar equations of fluid mechanics. This course decodes these complex formulas, compares them to other engineering disciplines and explains their far-reaching applications.

This course starts with an overview of fluid statics, which deals with a fluid at rest for solving pressure problems above and below sea level. It then covers fluid kinetics, the study of the rotation and velocity of a fluid, and introduces the different coordinate systems that are used to mathematically calculate fluid flow behavior. This is followed by lessons on the forces on a moving parcel of fluid, and Newton's law of inertia—also known as the second law of thermodynamics.

The final lesson tackles the fundamental principle of viscosity. Viscosity is a measure of how much resistance a fluid offers to the relative motion of its individual particles. A liquid's viscosity decreases as its temperature rises. Ketchup, for instance, has a significantly higher viscosity than water at the same temperature. The kinematic viscosity of a liquid is measured in centipoise. One centipoise is equal to 1.0020 cP at 20 degrees Celsius, the base fluid to which all others are compared.

As the world becomes more technologically advanced, the understanding of fluid dynamics will only increase in importance. Understanding the science behind these phenomena will improve the design and operation of new technologies, while enhancing our enjoyment of the wonders of nature.