Module information on this degree can be found below, separated by year of study.

The module information below applies for the current academic year. The academic year runs from August to July; the 'current year' switches over at the end of July.

Students select optional courses subject to rules specified in the Mechanical Engineering Student Handbook,  for example at most three Design and Business courses. Please note that numbers are limited on some optional courses and selection criteria will apply.

Fluid Mechanics 3A

Module aims

  • To provide an understanding of Fluid Mechanics from a general and fundamental viewpoint
  • To outline an approach for solving fluid mechanical problems
  • To provide an understanding of the properties of turbulence
  • To outline possible methods behind the modelling of turbulence
  • To provide an introduction to energy and work in fluid dynamics for incompressible, sub-sonic and trans-sonic compressible flows
  • To outline the nature and properties of normal and oblique shocks.

ECTS units:    5 

Learning outcomes

On successfully completing this module, students will be able to:

  • Describe the physical features of a flow in terms of the rate of strain, rotation and vorticity
  • Describe the physical features of turbulence, and the basis for models of it
  • Derive the fundamental differential conservation equation of mass
  • Manipulate the tensor forms of the conservation equations of mass, momentum energy and energy
  • Simplify the fundamental differential conservation equations with appropriate assumptions and find, where appropriate, an exact solution
  • Identify the dimensionless groups that determine the behaviour of fluid flow from the fundamental differential conservation equations
  • Describe the fundamental features of fluid flow from an analysis of numerial solutions

Module syllabus

  • Review of elemental approach to incompressible flow: external flows, boundary layers
  • Compressible form of the governing equations: continuity, Navier-Stokes, energy equations, simple analytic solutions (Couette, Poiseulle, Stokes, creeping flow), similarity solutions
  • Order of magnitude analysis: scaling, dimensionless groups and their use in analysing and simplifying the equations of fluid motion
  • Turbulence: length and time scales of turbulence; effects, properties and transport of turbulence in flows; modelling the effects of turbulence
  • Compressible flow: Speed of sound; Mach number; Euler Equation; Normal and Obliques Shock waves; Flow in a duct of varying area; Convergent-Divergent nozzles.



Teaching methods

  • Duration: 21 weeks (Autumn and Spring terms)
  • Lectures: 1 x 1h per week
  • Tutorials:  1 x 1h per week

Summary of student timetabled hours












Expected private study time

2-3hrs per week plus exam revision


Written examinations:

Date (approx.)

Max. mark

Pass mark

Fluid Mechanics (3hr)

A handbook of Data and Formulae will be provided.

This is a CLOSED BOOK Examination

April/ May



Reading list

Supplementary reading

Module leaders

Professor Aimee Morgans