This book is intended primarily for use in a one-quarter or one-semester introductory fluid mechanics course. Our goal is to provide both a balanced introduction to all the tools used for solving fluid mechanics problems today and a foundation for further study of this important and exciting field. By learning about analytical, empirical (existing experimental data and accepted engineering practice), experimental (new experimental data, which will need to be obtained), and computational tools, students learn that an engineering problem can be approached in many different ways and on several different levels. This distinction of approach is especially important in fluid mechanics, where all these tools are used extensively. Although the traditional methodology of engineering fluid mechanics is thoroughly covered, this text also includes elements of differential analysis presented at a level appropriate for the target student audience. We also make use of outputs from commercially available computational fluid dynamics codes to help illustrate the phenomena of interest. It is not expected that students will perform any computational fluid mechanics simulations. However, with computational solutions becoming routine, economical, and accessible to engineers with bachelor’s degrees, it is important that students be familiar with the use of this type of information. Therefore, computationally produced figures are used in the text for expository purposes. Throughout the text, CFD icons indicate when the subject matter directly, or indirectly, relates to computational methods.
There are also a large number of figures, photographs, and solved problems to give students an understanding of the many exciting problems in fluid mechanics and the tools used to solve them. The visual approach to understanding fluid mechanics is highlighted with the use of visual icons that point students to resources such as websites, books, and especially, the excellent CD Multi-Media Fluid Mechanics.* A third icon, called FE, is used to note material that is covered in the Fundamentals of Engineering exam.
We have organized the text in three parts to give to each instructor the flexibility needed to meet the needs of his or her students and course(s).