The quantitative study of how fluids (gases and liquids) move.

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Why do non-Newtonian fluids go hard when having a sudden force exerted on them?

You can dip your hands into a bowl of non-Newtonian fluid but if you are to punch it, it goes hard all of a sudden and is more like a solid than anything else. What is it about a non-Newtonian fluid ...
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Why is there a space between the flame and the nozzle on the space shuttle?

Why is there some space between the flame and the nozzle on the space shuttle? (see above picture)
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How is viscosity described on the molecular level?

What is the 'molecular' origin of the viscosity? The molecular origin of elasticity is almost clear for me: at the very bottom the 'elasticity' comes from the attraction and repulsion between atoms ...
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How to make the bubbles in my soda drink last longer?

I would like to make the bubbles in my soda drink last longer. For example, one good thing to do is to keep the bottle shut when you don't drink. But what else I can do? Should I try to minimize the ...
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Reynolds number and inertial force

The Reynolds number is defined as the ratio of ´inertial´ forces to viscous forces. $$ Re = \frac{\text{Inertial Forces}}{\text{Viscous Forces}}$$ Now, viscous forces make sense to me. They are ...
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How do you calculate vortex shedding frequency?

I am attempting to try to find out if there is any effect of Von Karman vortices on a group of wind speed readings where it is presumed that due to a mountain nearby the data collection spot Von ...
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How does the divergence theorem justify the integral form of the continuity equation?

I vaguely understand the continuity equation (at least its integral form), but I don't really understand the differential form of the continuity equation. I'm having trouble understanding how to ...
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911 views

What is Relativistic Navier-Stokes Equation Through Einstein Notation?

Navier-Stokes equation is non-relativistic, what is relativistic Navier-Stokes equation through Einstein notation?
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In terms of scale, where does the concept of Reynold's number cease to have meaning?

The Reynolds number is classically described in terms of pipe geometries but its use has also been usefully extended to other more complex surface geometries to predict transitional flow behavior. But ...
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Wavy stream of liquid

When pouring a liquid into a glass some streams have a wavy shape, like the one in the following photo: (Couldn't find a better picture, sorry.) What causes the stream to be of such a shape?
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How is the water meniscus at the edge of a capillary tube

Suppose we have a capillary tube in which water can rise to a height of x cm. If we dip the tube such that the height above the surface is less than x, then how will the water meniscus be at the edge ...
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General procedure for solving fluid flow problems

Could someone help me devise a short series of steps for solving an arbitrary fluid flow problem? Often the most difficult part of these problems is just figuring out what path to take in solving ...
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Where can I check a solution to 3D Navier Stokes?

A few years ago I developed a solution to the Navier-Stokes equations and as of yet have not been able to locate a similar version of the solution. I would like to know if anyone has seen a solution ...
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Does the wind gust over the ocean?

It is easy to observe that on a windy day, the wind does not blow for several hours at constant speed, then gradually subside. Instead, on a time scale of seconds or tens of seconds, there are ...
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Pendulum with water dripping out

Consider a pendulum, consisting of a string of length $l$ tied to a ball of negligible mass and radius $r$. The bob is filled with water, which has density $d$, and the pendulum is given a small push ...
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Why don't we talk about angular momentum at all in fluid mechanics?

People usually talk about similar (or maybe not?) things like vorticity or enstrophy in fluid mechanics, but no one talks about angular momentum, why?
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Could some design of a propeller be used in both air and water?

Propellers in water are smaller in diameter. They also move more slowly. On the other hand, aircraft propellers are larger in diameter, have narrower blades and operate at very high speeds. An ...
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Do de Laval nozzles have to be asymmetric?

All pictures of de Laval nozzles I've seen have an hourglass shape where the convergent section is shorter than the divergent section. Is this necessary to attain supersonic exhaust velocities, or ...
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What part of the fan blade actually does the noise generation?

I'm trying to identify the sources of noise in spinning fan blades and what causes them. Is the noise only generated by the lead edge of the blade 'cutting through' air? and different parts of it ...
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How can these fluid dynamical smoke-ring phenomena be explained?

The Navier-Stokes fluid dynamics equations, said that, as Sir William Thomson (or Lord Kelvin) predicted: When two smoke-rings are moving in the same direction, with the same speed, one behind the ...
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Is surface of a solid a streamline?

In fluid dynamics, streamlines are defined as line where at each point flow velocity is tangential to the line. Is it correct to say surface of a solid a streamline? On the surface the velocity vector ...
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Does irrotational imply inviscid?

Let us consider a 2D irrotational flow, such that $\nabla\times\boldsymbol u =\boldsymbol 0$. Defining the stream function such that $\boldsymbol u =\nabla\times\psi \boldsymbol n$ where $\boldsymbol ...
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Polar vs non-polar fluid

In the book "Vectors, Tensors, and the Basic Equations of Fluid Mechanics" by Rutherford Aris I read the following: If the fluid is such that the torques within it arise only as the moments of ...
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Phase Space Flow

Phase space flow shares characteristics with fluid flow such as incompressibility by Liouville's theorem. Extending the similarities one might be curious, does phase space flow have a characteristic ...
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How do I intuit viscosity in a rotating fluid?

Suppose I have two plates with a viscous fluid in between. I slide them in the same direction (a direction in their own plane), one at $5 \,\text{m/s}$ and the other at $6 \,\text{m/s}$. Due to the ...
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Could motives aid in the study of the Navier-Stokes equations?

Recently, mathematicians and theoretical physicists have been studying Quantum Field Theory (and renormalization in particular) by means of abstract geometrical objects called motives. Amongst these ...
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Why does pressure act as a source for the gravitational field?

I'm asking for a qualitative explanation if there is one. My own answer doesn't work. I would have guessed it's because when a gas has pressure the kinetic energy adds to the rest mass of a given ...
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How can a droplet of liquid float on the surface of the same liquid?

This can happen during the rain, or when pouring water. Sometimes small (1-2 mm) droplets of water float on the surface for some time (a few seconds) before coalescing with the big body of water. A ...
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Does Liquid Immersion protect against G forces?

I'm under the impression that if an object is immersed in water it can be protected from the effects of Gravity - or in other terms appear to be in a 0G enviroment. Typical examples of this include ...
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Riemann invariants…Any physical interpretation?

I am really new to the CFD simulation, and started some simple algorithms recently. I then got introduced to the Riemann Invariants. Can any one provide some physical interpretation? Also, why is ...
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Atmospheric Circulation

What is the simplest simulatable model giving our rotating earth its 3 circulation cells (Hadley, Ferrel, Polar)? The model should also show 1 circulation cell if the earth's rotation were stopped (or ...
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Why is a beam reach the fastest point of sail on modern sailboats?

I've heard that a beam reach (perpendicular to the wind) is the fastest point of sail on modern sailboats, but I haven't heard a satisfying explanation of the physics behind the claim. Triangular ...
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Helicopter, Tricopter, Quadccopter - what's really happening here? Are there generalized advantages on a small scale?

There have been, it seems, a proliferation of quad-copters commercially available. Amazon seriously tried to use them for deliveries. (Search Drone on their website.) The NFL uses one for cameras. ...
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Why Are Normal Shock Waves Unstable in a Converging Channel?

While learning about shock waves in an introductory Gas Dynamics course, it was revealed that normal shocks are unstable if formed in a converging channel. Even if the local conditions ostensibly ...
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Sailing against the wind. Is this a fair model?

I was ruminating the explanations about how boats can sail against the wind (or "into the wind"), and wondered if one could devise a simple mechanical model without hydrodynamics involved. Imagine a ...
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What's the most efficient strategy to shake a bottle to create a global flow?

Consider a bottle of orange juice with pieces of the fruit gathered at the bottom of the bottle. You need to shake the bottle to evenly distribute the pieces in the bottle. The first part of the ...
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Could Navier-Stokes equation be derived directly from Boltzmann equation?

I know how to derive Navier-Stokes equations from Boltzmann equation in case where bulk and viscosity coefficients are set to zero. I need only multiply it on momentum and to integrate it over ...
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Deriving shallow water equations from Euler's equations

I would like to derive the one-dimensional shallow water equations from Eulers's equations. This works perfectly for the conservation of mass. Especially the meaning of the longitudinal fluid ...
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Sound Propagation using Finite-Difference Time-Domain (FDTD) considering wind effects

I am trying to plot the propagation of sound from a fixed source in a 2D environment using Finite-Difference Time-Domain (FDTD) Method taking into account the effects of the wind velocity. I came ...
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Is a venturi pump feasible at very low pressure?

I need assistance (or experience feedback) in estimating if a Venturi pump would work at low pressure. A boiler under vacuum (10% atmosphere) will produce steam (at a given speed depending on the ...
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Are smaller soap bubbles more accelerated by wind?

If you blow a bunch of soap bubbles outside, and a gust of wind hits them, will the bigger ones be more or less accelerated by the wind than the smaller ones? Intuitively, and maybe from remembered ...
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At what velocity does sea water leave a pipe run into a fresh water lake (for equal surface levels)?

If I took a fresh water lake* whose surface is exactly as sea level, and connect it to the sea with a pipe filled with sea water, with both ends of the pipe at exactly the same depth from the surface, ...
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What keeps a gas giant from falling in on itself?

There is not enough gravity at the center to start nuclear fusion, but it seems that there would be plenty enough to collapse the planet.
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Why are Navier-Stokes equations needed?

Can't we picture air or water molecules individually? Then, why are Navier-Stokes equations needed, after all? Can't we just aggregate individual ones? Or is it computationally difficult, or ...
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Why do blades of windturbine propellers as comp. to propellers of ships cover very different areas?

This is a thought I asked myself often, but never did real efforts to get an answer. Barsmonsters question about number of fans of a wind turbine made me think of it again Why do blades of aircraft ...
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How far can water rise above the edge of a glass?

When you fill a glass with water, water forms a concave meniscus with constant contact angle $\theta$ (typically $\theta=20^\circ$ for tap water): Once you reach the top of the glass, the water-air ...
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Why is the answer to this diffusion example unintuitive?

Imagine a linear decrease in concentration from left to right. Using Fick's first law, $J = -D \frac{d \psi}{d x}$ for all x, from left to right, we have the same flux amount because the decrease is ...
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Why do liquids separate in space?

I've seen videos of people in space (on ISS) who squeeze a bottle or something and liquid comes out, it then separates into smaller balls. Why is this surely it should stay pretty much together ...
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Exact Solutions to the Navier-Stokes Equations

There are a number of exact solutions to the Navier-Stokes equations. How many exact solutions are currently known? Is it possible to enumerate all of the solutions to the Navier-Stokes equations?
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Why, when one opens 1 car window, does that noise occur?

When you're driving and you open 1 car window, say the front one, there comes a horrible noise, but when you open another window just the slightest bit, this noise goes away (I'm sure most people know ...