Last Updated S012019


Unit Name Fluid Mechanics
Unit Code BME206S
Unit Duration 1 Semester

Bachelor of Science (Engineering)

Duration 3 years    

Year Level Two
Unit Creator / Reviewer N/A
Core/Sub-Discipline: Sub-discipline
Pre/Co-requisites BSC101C, 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 detailed knowledge of the principles and practices governing the field of fluid mechanics.

The unit will include basic fluid properties and laws governing fluid statics; principal concepts and methods of fluid kinematics and dynamics; fluid system flow analysis utilising the Continuity, Bernoulli, and Momentum equations; flow system analysis including boundary layer concepts and modelling based on dimensional analysis. Students will also undertake a project work involving dimensional analysis and modelling.

At the conclusion of this unit, students will have been imparted with the requisite knowledge to comprehend, distinguish, and apply the principles and practices governing the field of fluid mechanics in their future work.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Evaluate fluid properties and make a distinction between ideal, real, Newtonian, and non-Newtonian fluids.
    Bloom’s Level 4
  2. Identify and apply concepts related to statics and fluid flow dynamics.
    Bloom’s Level 4
  3. Perform detailed flow system analysis
    Bloom’s Level 4
  4. Detail the boundary layer and compressible flow concepts
    Bloom’s Level 4
  5. Perform dimensional analysis to solve problems in fluid mechanics
    Bloom’s Level 4

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: Fluid properties, statics

Students will complete a quiz with MCQ type answers and solve simple problems on fluid statics

Due after Topic 3 15% 1, 2

Assessment 2

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

Example Topic: Buoyancy, fluid kinematics and dynamics

Students will answer short essay questions and solve simple problems to demonstrate an understanding of the principles of buoyancy, fluid dynamics and kinematics

Due after Topic 6 20% 2, 3

Assessment 3

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

Example Topic: Laminar flow, flow through pipes, boundary layer concepts

Students will perform simple calculations related to laminar flow, flow through pipes and boundary layer concept

Due after Topic 9 20% 3, 4

Assessment 4

Type: Exam or project

Example Topic: Dimensional analysis, modelling

Students will undertake a project work on dimensional analysis and modelling. The assessor will specify the format in which the report will be prepared. An exam would be proctored consisting of multiple choice questions and short/long answer questions.

Final Week 40% 1 to 5

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


Graebel, WP 2001, Engineering Fluid Mechanics, International Student Edition, CRC Press, ISBN-13: 978-1560327110


Massey, BS 1998, Mechanics of Fluids, 7th edn, CRC Press, ISBN-13: 978-0748740437

Journal, website

Notes and Reference Texts

IDC Technologies
Other material advised during the lectures

Unit Content

Topic 1 

Fluid Properties

1. Ideal and real fluids
2. Continuum concept
3. Properties of fluids – mass density, weight density, specific volume, specific gravity, viscosity, surface tension, capillarity, vapour pressure, compressibility, bulk modulus
4. Vapour pressure and cavitation
5. Newtonian and non-Newtonian fluids

Topic 2

 Fluid Statics

1. Pressure and Pascal’s law
2. Pressure measurement
3. Hydrostatic force on a submerged plane and curved surface

Topic 3


1. Buoyancy and flotation
2. Archimedes principle
3. Liquid in relative equilibrium
4. Equilibrium of floating and submerged bodies
5. Determination of metacentric height

Topic 4

Fluid Kinematics

1. Fluid flow, fluid motion, flow lines
2. Continuity equation
3. Velocity and acceleration
4. Velocity potential function and stream function

Topic 5

Fluid Dynamics

1. Euler’s equation of motion
2. Bernoulli’s equation and its practical application
3. Fluid Flow Measurements: Venturimeter, orifice meter, pitot-tube, orifice meter, notches
4. Impulse momentum and momentum of momentum equations
5. Kinetic energy and momentum correction factor

Topic 6

Laminar Flow and Viscous Effects

1. Reynold’s number
2. Shear stress and pressure gradient relationship
3. Laminar flow through circular pipe-Hagen Poiseille’s equation
4. Laminar flow between parallel and stationary plates

Topic 7

Flow through Pipes

1. Minor losses through pipes
2. Darey’s and Chezy’s equation for loss of head due to friction in pipes
3. HGL and TEL

Topic 8

Flow Past Immersed Bodies and Boundary Layer Concept

1. Drag and lift
2. Displacement, momentum, and energy thickness
3. Concept of boundary layer and definition of boundary layer thickness
4. Analysis of laminar and turbulent boundary layers
5. Boundary layer separation and control

Topic 9

Compressible fluid flow

1. Velocity of sound in a fluid
2. Sonic velocity
3. Mach number and Mach cone
4. Propagation of sound waves in a compressible fluid

Topic 10

Dimensional Analysis

1. Methods of dimensional analysis
2. Types of similitude
3. Rayleigh’s method
4. Buckingham’s theorem
5. Limitations
6. Model analysis

Topic 11

Dimensional Analysis (Contd)

1. Dimensionless numbers and their significance
2. Model laws – Reynold’s model law, Froude’s model law, Euler’s model law, Weber’s model law, Mach’s Model law

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 student work and to clarify any outstanding issues. Instructors/facilitators may choose to cover a specialized topic if applicable to that cohort.

Software/Hardware Used


  • Software: Ansys Fluent 

  • Version: N/A

  • Instructions:  Remote Lab 14

  • Additional resources or files: N/A


  • N/A