Last Updated S022020


Unit Name Applied Fluid Mechanics
Unit Code BCS206S
Unit Duration 1 Semester

Bachelor of Science (Engineering)

Duration 3 years    

Year Level Two
Unit Creator / Reviewer N/A
Core/Elective: Core
Pre/Co-requisites BSC103C, BSC107C
Credit Points


Total Course Credit Points 81 (27 x 3)

Mode of Delivery Online or on-campus. 
Unit Workload (Total student workload including “contact hours” = 10 hours per week; 5 hours per week for 24 week delivery)
Pre-recordings / Lecture – 1.5 hours
Tutorial – 1.5 hours
Guided labs / Group work / Assessments – 2 hours
Personal Study recommended – 5 hours

Unit Description and General Aims

The objective in presenting this unit is to provide students with a comprehensive introduction to fluid mechanics for civil and environmental engineering applications.

The unit contents will also provide students with the opportunity to further develop their physical intuition and abstraction levels by performing, within a team framework, a sequence of fluid mechanics experiments that progressively build essential experience in physical modelling through the collection and analyses of experimental data.

The subject matter covered in this unit will include fundamental fluid mechanics concepts and processes; solving quantitative fluid mechanics problems; undertaking pre-laboratory calculations and associated fluid mechanics laboratory experiments.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this Unit, students are expected to be able to:

  1. Demonstrate and communicate a broad knowledge of fluid mechanics concepts and processes using both text and illustrations.
    Bloom’s Level 2
  2. Solve quantitative fluid mechanics problems using complex reasoning and the selection of appropriate solutions.
    Bloom’s Level 3
  3. Participate effectively in a sequence pre-laboratory calculations and associated fluid mechanics laboratory experiments and produce and critique reports.
    Bloom’s Level 5
  4. Integrate appropriate analysis and calculations for the initial design of typical engineering hydraulic systems.
    Bloom’s Level 6
  5. Conduct fluid mechanics practicals.
    Bloom’s Level 3

Student assessment

Assessment Type When assessed Weighting (% of total unit marks) Learning Outcomes Assessed

Assessment 1

Type: Multi-choice test / Group work / Short answer questions / Practical / Remote Lab / Simulation

Example Topic: Fluids properties and Fluids in Static Equilibrium, pressure.

Students may complete a quiz with MCQ type answers and solve some simple equations to demonstrate a good understanding of the fundamental concepts.

Due after Topic 3 15% 1

Assessment 2

Type: Multi-choice test / Group work / Short answer questions / Practical / Remote Lab / Simulation

Example Topic: Control Volume; Momentum Analysis & Energy Equations; Pressures in Accelerating Fluid Systems.

Students may be asked to provide solutions to simple problems on various topics.

Due after Topic 7 20% 1, 2

Assessment 3

Type: Multi-choice test / Group work / Short answer questions / Practical / Remote Lab / Simulation / Project / Report

Example Topics: Team work practical: conduct fluid mechanics laboratory experiments and produce a report. Critique by group members on each other’s laboratory reports.

Students may complete a quiz with MCQ type answers or solve some simple problems or use software to complete a practical.

Due after Topic 9 20% 3, 5

Assessment 4

Type: Examination

Example Topic: All topics with an emphasis on Logarithms and Matrices

An examination with a mix of detailed report type questions and/or simple numerical problems to be completed in 3 hours

Final Week 40% 1, 2, 4

Attendance / Tutorial Participation

Example: Presentation, discussion, group work, exercises, self-assessment/reflection, case study analysis, application.

Continuous 5% 1 to 5

Prescribed and Recommended Readings

Required textbook(s)

D. F. Elger, B. A. LeBret, C. T. Crowe, J. A. Roberson, Engineering Fluid Mechanics, 12th Edition. John Wiley & Sons, 2019. ISBN 978-0470259771

Reference Materials

Bugler, J 1990, Fluid Mechanics for Technologists, Longman Cheshire, ISBN 978-0582712379

Unit Content


Topic 1


• Liquids and Gases
• The Continuum Assumption
• Dimensions, Units, and Resources
• Topics in Dimensional Analysis
• Engineering Analysis
• Applications and Connections 12

Topic 2

Fluid Properties

• Properties Involving Mass and Weight
• Ideal Gas Law
• Properties Involving Thermal Energy
• Viscosity
• Bulk Modulus of Elasticity
• Surface Tension
• Vapour Pressure

Topic 3

Fluid Statics

• Pressure Variation with Elevation
• Pressure Measurements
• Forces on Plane Surfaces (Panels)
• Forces on Curved Surfaces
• Buoyancy
• Stability of Immersed and Floating Bodies

Topic 4

Control Volume and Continuity Equation

• Rate of Flow
• Control Volume Approach
• Continuity Equation
• Cavitation
• Differential Form of the Continuity Equation

Topic 5

Steady Flow Energy Equations

• Energy, Work, and Power
• Energy Equation: General Form
• Energy Equation: Pipe Flow
• Power Equation
• Contrasting the Bernoulli Equation and the Energy Equation
• Transitions
• Hydraulic and Energy Grade Lines

Topic 6

Momentum Analysis

• Momentum Equation: Derivation
• Momentum Equation: Interpretation
• Common Applications
• Additional Applications
• Moment-of-Momentum Equation
• Navier-Stokes Equation

Topic 7

Pressures in Accelerating Fluid Systems

• Descriptions of Fluid Motion
• Acceleration
• Euler’s Equation
• Pressure Distribution in Rotating Flows
• The Bernoulli Equation Along a Streamline
• Rotation and Vorticity
• The Bernoulli Equation in Irrotational Flow

Topics 8 & 9

Dimensional Analysis and Similarity

• Need for Dimensional Analysis
• Buckingham Theorem
• Dimensional Analysis
• Common -Groups
• Similitude
• Model Studies for Flows without Free-Surface Effects
• Model-Prototype Performance
• Approximate Similitude at High Reynolds Numbers
• Free-Surface Model Studies

Topic 10

Open Channel Flow

• Define an open channel, uniform flow and nonuniform flow, and the Froude number;
• Calculate the hydraulic radius and the Reynolds number;  the criteria for laminar and turbulent flow
• Physics of the energy equation and the corresponding HGL and EGL.
• Calculate flow rate with the Darcy–Weisbach approach or the Manning equation.
• Define and explain the best hydraulic section
• Overview of Steady Non-Uniform Flow

Topic 11

Flow Measurement

• Measuring Velocity and Pressure
• Measuring Flow Rate (Discharge)

Topic 12

Unit Review

In the final week, students will have an opportunity to review the contents covered so far. Opportunity will be provided for a review of students’ work and to clarify any outstanding issues.

Software/Hardware Used


  • Software: Ansys Fluent 

  • Version: N/A

  • Instructions:  Remote Lab 14

  • Additional resources or files: N/A


  • N/A