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Hydrodynamics Definition

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The hydrodynamics is the area of physical dedicated to analyze the movement of fluids. A fluid, meanwhile, is a substance whose particles are bound together by a force of attraction that's weak.

Since liquids and gases are fluid, both materials could be studied by hydrodynamics. However, this scientific branch focuses on the investigation of the characteristics of the movement of incompressible fluids: that is, of water and other liquids.

In this way, hydrodynamics takes incompressible liquids (whose density isn't altered with pressure changes ) as a starting point. It also considers that the flow of liquids occurs in a steady state (with a speed independent of time at any point) and with an energy loss due to viscosity that's negligible.

"Hydrodynamics", a work published in 1738 by the Swiss physicist Daniel Bernoulli, is referred to as the pioneering work for the development of hydrodynamics. This scientist, in fact, brings the name to one of the fundamental laws of this field of knowledge.

The Bernoulli principle states that, in an ideal fluid circulating through a closed conduit, the energy remains constant throughout the journey. As it's an ideal fluid, friction and viscosity aren't taken into account.

From this principle, Torricelli's theorem derives, which postulates that the velocity of a fluid in an open vessel is equal to that of any body that falls under vacuum freely from the level of the fluid until it reaches the center of gravity of the opening.

Another important concept for hydrodynamics is the Reynolds number, a dimensionless number that relates inertial forces and viscous forces acting in a fluid. This links speed, viscosity and density in an expression.


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