Fluid Mechanics


Dimensional Analysis
‡Dimensions of physical quantities ‡Dimensional homogeneity ‡Buckingham pi Theorem ‡Important dimensionless numbers (Reynolds, Froude and Mach) ‡Model analysis

Dimensional Analysis
‡ ‡ This technique is useful in all branches of science and engineering Basic premises are
1. 2.

Physical quantities have dimensions All equations developed from basic laws of physics are dimensionally homogeneous


We can develop a useful theory from this information

‡ Consider viscosity, , which has SI units kg/(m‡sec) ‡ We write ‡ [ ] means ³dimensions of ´ while M, L and T denote dimensions of mass, length and time, respectively ‡ If temperature is relevant, we denote its dimension by ‡ M, L, T and are called independent dimensions


‡ All dimensions can be expressed in terms of the independent dimensions ‡ For example, consider pressure, p, which has dimensions of force per unit area«appealing to Newton¶s law, we have

‡ Thus, for dimensional analysis purposes, pressure has SI units of kg/(m‡sec2)


± both geometrically and ± physically.Dimensional Analysis ‡ The 2/3 of all fluid problems are too complex. to be solved analytically ‡ They must be tested by experiment. ± Their behavior is reported as experimental data ‡ Such data are much more useful if they are expressed in compact. economic form .

by most engineering eyes ‡ These are the motivations for dimensional analysis. ‡ The technique is traditional in fluid mechanics and is useful in all engineering and physical sciences. ± with notable uses also seen in the biological and social sciences . nor can the trends and rates of change be observed. since tabulated data cannot be absorbed.Dimensional Analysis ‡ Graphs are especially useful.

± especially in such fields as fluid dynamics and ± thermodynamics where problems with many variables are handled. it is possible to summarise the experimental results and ± to determine their functional relationship. ‡ By constructing non-dimensional quantities expressing the relationship among the variables. ± .Dimensional analysis ‡ The method of dimensional analysis is used in every field of engineering.

large prototype. small model to design information for an expensive. ‡ We do not build a million-dollar airplane and see whether it has enough lift force. ‡ We measure the lift on a small model and use a scaling law to predict the lift on the full-scale prototype airplane.Similarity ‡ The scaling laws can convert data from a cheap. we say that a condition of similarity exists between the model and the prototype . ‡ There are rules we shall explain for finding scaling laws. ‡ When the scaling law is valid.

if the appropriate non-dimensional quantities such as ± Reynolds number and ± Froude number ‡ are the same for both devices then the results of the model device tests are applicable to the full-scale device.Similarity ‡ In order to determine the characteristics of a full-scale device through model tests. ± besides geometrical similarity. . ± similarity of dynamical conditions between the two is also necessary. ‡ When the above dimensional analysis is employed.

‡ Utilising this principle that the terms of physically meaningful equations have equal dimensions. whatever unit system is used. .Dimensional Analysis ‡ When the dimensions of all terms of an equation are equal the equation is dimensionally correct. ‡ In this case. ‡ The method of obtaining dimensionless groups of which the physical phenomenon is a function is called dimensional analysis. that equation holds its physical meaning.

Dimensional Analysis ‡ If a phenomenon is too complicated to derive a formula describing it. an analytic relationship between the groups can be constructed allowing numerical calculations to be conducted ‡ In order to perform the dimensional analysis. it is convenient to use the theorem . dimensional analysis can be employed to identify groups of variables which would appear in such a formula ‡ By supplementing this knowledge with experimental data.

). «. «.T. T2. T1. Tn-m)=0 . ‡ The behavior of the system is describable by a dimensionless equation F(T1.L. ± then there are a total of n-m independent dimensionless terms.[Any Physical Quantity] = MaLbTcQd ‡ Buckingham Pi Theorem: If a system has ± n physical quantities that depend on ± m independent dimensions(M. T2. Tk-r.Dimensional Analysis Theorems ‡ Dimensional Homogeneity Theorem: Any physical quantity is dimensionally a power law monomial . ± Each term is called a T term.


‡Uses principle of dimensional homogeneity .‡Specific Need ‡Application of fluid mechanics in design makes use of experiments results. ‡Dimensional analysis provides a strategy for choosing relevant data. ‡Results often difficult to interpret. ‡Used to help analyse fluid flow ‡Especially when fluid flow is too complex for mathematical analysis.

‡ It depends on the correct identification of variables ‡ Relates these variables together ‡ Doesn¶t give the complete answer ‡ Experiments necessary to complete solution . What runs to do.‡Specific uses: ‡ help design experiments ‡ Informs which measurements are important ‡ Allows most to be obtained from experiment: e. How to interpret.g.

Kilogram.‡Any physical situation can be described by familiar properties. a standardised unit e. volume. area. ‡In dimensional analysis we are concerned with the nature of the dimension i.g metre. ‡Units used to quantify these dimensions. ‡Dimensions are of no use without a magnitude. kilometre.e.e. ‡Dimensions can be measured. length. e. its quality not its quantity . velocity. i. ‡These are all known as dimensions.g. a yard etc. acceleration etc.

Significant Dimensionless Groups in Fluid Mechanics ‡ Reynolds Number (inertial to viscous forces) Important in all fluid flow problems  Mach Number (inertial to elastic forces) Important in problems with compressibility effects .

Significant Dimensionless Groups in Fluid Mechanics ‡ Froude Number (inertial to gravitational forces) Important in problems with a free surface .


Significant Dimensionless Groups in Fluid Mechanics ‡ Euler Number (pressure to inertial forces) Important in problems with pressure differences  Weber Number (inertial to surface tension forces)  Important in problems with surface tension effects .

Dimensional Analysis Whenever an engineering problem cannot be solved by using the equations and analytical procedures described previously. The tool used to plan. design and interpret the experiments is called Dimensional Analysis. we must resort to experimentation. Dimensional Analysis 9.22 .

The quantity of interest is the pressure drop that develops along the pipe as a result of friction.Dimensional Analysis Consider the steady flow of an incompressible Newtonian fluid through a circular pipe. For turbulent flow this problem cannot be solved analytically. .

D. . pipe length. 4. pipe roughness. V. 2. 5. V. Q and 6. D. fluid viscosity. pipe diameter. . I) Our goal is to form dimensionless groups from these variables. Q. V. V. I: (P = J ( .Dimensional Analysis Pressure drop is expected to depend on 1. velocity. fluid density. 3.

..) . 4 4 . The dimensionless products are frequently referred to as ³pi terms´. where m is the minimum number of reference dimensions required to describe the variables..Dimensional Analysis Buckingham Pi Theorem: If an equation involving n variables is dimensionally homogeneous.. A relationship of the form shown below is thus obtained: 41 ! * ( 4 2 . it can be reduced to a relationship among n-m independent dimensionless products. 4 3 .

density.. ‡The choice of repeating variables is governed by the following considerations: 1. Third variable contains fluid property ( viscosity. The repeating variable should be selected in such a way that i..) ii. acceleration.) . diameter. etc. Second variable contains flow property ( velocity.. specific weight.Method of selecting Repeating variable ‡The number of repeating variables = The number of fundamental dimensions of the problem.... The dependant variable should not be selected as repeating variable. One variable contains geometric variable ( length. Height etc.) iii. etc. 2.

v. 2) l. 5. . 4) d . 3) l.v. v. v. The repeating variable selected should not form a dimensionless group 4.Method of selecting Repeating variable 3. No two repeating variables should have the same dimension Thumb rule: The choice of repeating variables can be 1) d. The repeating variable together must have the same number of fundamental dimensions.

Dimensional Analysis: Pipe flow example ‡ Step 1: List all the variables that are involved in the problem ‡ Step 2: Express each of the variables in terms of basic dimensions ‡ Step 3: Determine the required number of pi terms. where the number required is equal to the number of fundamental dimensions. ‡ Step 4: Select a number of repeating variables. .

‡ Step 7: Check all the resulting pi terms to make sure they are dimensionless . ‡ Step 6: Repeat step 5 for each of the remaining non-repeating variables. each raised to an exponent that will make the combination dimensionless.Dimensional Analysis: Pipe flow example ‡ Step 5: Form a pi term by multiplying one of the non-repeating variables by the product of the repeating variables.

D ¹ º ª ¨ Q I ¸ J© ¹ © DV V . ) D . J© ¹ © DV V D .Dimensional Analysis: Pipe flow example ‡ Step 8: Express the final form as a relationship among the pi terms. (P VV 2 ¨ Q N I ¸ . D ¹ º ª (P D VV 2 N I @ ! J (Re.

V. ‡ Using dimensional analysis obtain the dimensionless groups to correlate the parameters. . the diameter D of the sphere and the fluid properties density and viscosity .‡ The drag force on a smooth sphere is found to be affected by the velocity of flow.

e.. i.Nature of Dimensional Analysis  There are 5 dimensional quantities  There are 3 independent dimensions. fluid viscosity (Q) . fluid density (V). speed (V). L and T  The Buckingham Theorem tells us there are 5 ± 3 = 2 dimensionless groupings  Drag force depends on FOUR parameters: sphere size (D). M.

V. V. D.Buckingham Pi Theorem ‡ Step 1: List all the dimensional parameters involved Let n be the number of parameters Example: For drag on a sphere. and n = 5 . Q. F.

Buckingham Pi Theorem ‡ Step 2 Select a set of fundamental (primary) dimensions Example: For drag on a sphere choose MLt .

Buckingham Pi Theorem ‡ Step 3 List the dimensions of all parameters in terms of primary dimensions Let n be the number of primary dimensions Example: For drag on a sphere n = 3 .

V.Buckingham Pi Theorem ‡ Step 4 Select a set of r dimensional parameters that includes all the primary dimensions Example: For drag on a sphere (m .n = 3) select V. D .

Buckingham Pi Theorem
‡ Step 5
Set up dimensional equations, combining the parameters selected in Step 4 with each of the other parameters in turn, to form dimensionless groups There will be n ± m equations Example: For drag on a sphere

Buckingham Pi Theorem ‡ Step 5 (Continued)
Example: For drag on a sphere


a+1=0 -3a+b+c+1=0 -b-2=0

Buckingham Pi Theorem
a = -1 b = -2 c = -2

Buckingham Pi Theorem
‡ Step 6
Check to see that each group obtained is dimensionless Example: For drag on a sphere

‡ 2 = a Vb Dc Solving we get. ‡ 2 = / VD .

b is held perpendicular to the flow of a fluid. and the fluid properties.‡ A rectangular plate of height. Obtain a correlation for the drag force in terms of dimensionless parameters. . The drag force on the plate is influenced by the dimensions a and b. the velocity u. density and viscosity . a and width.

a=±2 . u and as repeating variables 1 + c = 0. Hence three terms can be obtained. 1 + a + b ± 3c = 0. ‡ Selecting b. b = ± 2.‡ There are 6 parameters and three dimensions. ±2±b=0 c = ± 1.

b=±1 . a=±1 1 + c = 0. ± 1 + a + b ± 3c = 0. c = ± 1. b = ± 1. 1 + a + b ± 3c = 0. ± b = 0.c = 0. ± 1 ± b = 0.

Convective heat transfer coefficient in free convection over a surface is found to be influenced by the density. Using dimensional analysis. thermal conductivity. gravitational acceleration. . viscosity. The variables with dimensions in the MLT set is tabulated below. coefficient of cubical expansion. the height of surface and the flow velocity. temperature difference. determine the dimensionless parameters that will correlate the phenomenon. specific heat.

. x and k are chosen as repeating variables ‡ 1 = T a bxckd a bxckd ‡ 2= ‡ 3 = g a bxckd ‡ 4 = c a bxckd ‡ 5 = h a bxckd .‡ There are nine variables ‡ There are four dimensions ‡ Hence five terms can be identified ‡ .

1 ± d = 0. b = ± 3. a = 2.‡ 1 = T a bxckd a + b + d = 0. d=1 . c = 2. b ± 3d = 0. ± 3a ± b + c + d = 0.

± 1 ± d = 0. c = ± 2. b = 3. ± b ± 3d = 0. ± 3a ± b + c + d = 0.‡ 2 = a bxckd a + b + d = 0. a = ± 2. d=±1 .

a=2 b=±2 c=3 d=0 . 1 ± 3a ± b + c + d = 0. ± 2 ± b ± 3d = 0. d = 0.‡ 3 = g a bxckd a + b + d = 0.

b = 1. a = 0. d=±1 . ± 2 ± b ± 3d = 0.‡ 4 = c a bxckd a + b + d = 0. c = 0. 2 ± 3a ± b + c + d = 0. ± 1 ± d = 0.

± 3 ± b ± 3d = 0. c = 1. a = 0. b = 0.‡ 5 = h a bxckd 1 + a + b + d = 0. d=±1 . ± 1 ± d = 0. ± 3a ± b + c + d = 0.

Initial choice of variables should be done with great care. unimportant variables are chosen : * Extra groups will be formed * Will have little effect on physical performance * Should be identified during experiments ‡ If an important variable is missed: ‡ A group would be missing. . ‡ Experimental analysis may miss significant behavioural changes. extra.Wrong choice of physical properties ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ If.


(The Secrets ) .

Why aren¶t there any mice in the Polar Regions? E. But what do I really need to know about Dimensional Analysis so that I can pass the test? G. But can it be used in the Lab ? .Outline A. Why was Gulliver driven out of Lillipute? F. What is Dimensional Analysis and why should I care? D. What¶s the secret of being a Scientist or an Engineer? B. What are Units and Dimensions anyway? C.

Identify the relevant physical variables. Secret #1: Usually not all of these are possible. Solve the resulting equations. Sometimes none are. 3. . 2. Relate these variables using the known physical laws.How to be a Scientist or Engineer The steps in understanding and/or control any physical phenomena is to 1.

Nature does not care if we measure lengths in centimeters or inches or light-years or « ‡ Check your units! All natural/physical relations must be dimensionally correct. .Secret #2: Dimensional Analysis ALL IS NOT LOST BECAUSE OF Rationale ‡ Physical laws must be independent of arbitrarily chosen units of measure.

‡Time has dimension T. ‡Speed has dimension L/T . ‡Area has dimension L2. ‡Distance has dimension L. ‡Volume has dimension L3.Dimensional Analysis Dimensional Analysis refers to the physical nature of the quantity and the type of unit (Dimension) used to specify it.

Why are there no small animals in the polar regions? ‡ Heat Loss w Surface Area (L2) ‡ Mass wVolume (L3) ‡ Heat Loss/Mass w Area/Volume = L2 / L3 = L-1 .

5 or 40 : 1 .Heat Loss/Mass w Area/Volume = L2/ L3 = L-1 Mouse (L = 5 cm) 1/L = 1/(0.5 m-1 20 : 0.05 m) = 20 m-1 Polar Bear (L = 2 m) 1/L = 1/(2 m) = 0.

Gulliver¶s Travels: Dimensional Analysis ‡ Gulliver was 12x the Lilliputians ‡ How much should they feed him? 12x their food ration? ‡ A persons food needs are related to their mass (volume) ± This depends on the cube of the linear dimension. .

Let LG and VG denote Gulliver¶s linear and volume dimensions. so = (LG)3 / (LL)3 = (12 LL)3 / (LL)3 = 123 = 1728 Gulliver needs to be fed 1728 times the amount of food each day as the Lilliputians. Let LL and VL denote the Lilliputian¶s linear and volume dimensions. Gulliver is 12x taller than the Lilliputians. VG / VL This problem has direct relevance to drug dosages in humans . LG =12 LL Now VGw (LG)3 and VLw (LL)3.

Correlating experimental data 4. Extrapolating data from small to large models 63 .General Observations Dimensional analysis has at least four key uses« 1. Checking dimensional consistency of algebraic results 2. Deducing appropriate physical scales 3.

but are generally of a different size (usually smaller).Modeling ‡ An engineering (or physical) model is a representation of a physical system. ‡ Models resemble the prototype. ‡ The physical system for which the predictions are to be made is called the prototype. that may be used to predict its behaviour. . may involve different fluids and often operate under different conditions.

... ± 4 nm ! 4 n ± À ... 4 3m . 4 3 ..4 nm ) ‡ In order to ensure that our model behaves in a similar manner as the prototype the following similarity requirements.‡ Using the principles of dimensional analysis. or modeling laws must be met: 4 2m ! 4 2 ¾ 4 3m ! 4 3 ± ± ¿ 41m ! 41 ....4 n ) ‡ A similar relationship can be writted for a model of this prototype: 41m ! * ( 4 2 m . any given problem concerning the prototype can be described in terms of a set of pi terms as: Theory of Models 41 ! * ( 4 2 ...

Flow Similarity and Model Studies ‡ Geometric Similarity ± Model and prototype have same shape ± Linear dimensions on model and prototype correspond within constant scale factor ‡ Kinematic Similarity ± Velocities at corresponding points on model and prototype differ only by a constant scale factor ‡ Dynamic Similarity ± Forces on model and prototype differ only by a constant scale factor .

Geometric similarity: The ratio of all corresponding dimensions in the model and prototype are equal. .

the paths of particles are geometrically similar ii. the ratios of the velocities of are similar .Kinematic similarity The similarity of time as well as geometry. It exists if: i.

The controlling group is usually Re. This occurs when the controlling group is the same for model and prototype. So Re is the same for model and prototype: .Dynamic similarity If geometrically and kinematically similar and the ratios of all forces are the same.

R. An example: For resistance R.Modelling and Scaling Laws: Measurements taken from a model needs a scaling law applied to predict the values in the prototype. is dependent on the following: . of a body moving through a fluid.


Flow Similarity and Model Studies ‡ Example: Drag on a Sphere .

Flow Similarity and Model Studies ‡ Example: Drag on a Sphere For dynamic similarity « « then « .

in aerodynamics) complete similarity cannot be obtained.Flow Similarity and Model Studies ‡ Incomplete Similarity Sometimes (e.. but phenomena may still be successfully modelled .g.

‡ The system whose behavior is to be predicted by the model is called the prototype. .MODEL AND PROTOTYPE ‡ In the engineering point of view model can be defined as the representation of physical system that may be used to predict the behavior of the system in the desired aspect.

‡ The discussion in this lecture is about physical models that resemble the prototype but are generally smaller in size. velocities etc. ‡ These may also operate with different fluids. ‡ As models are generally smaller than the prototype. ‡ The effect of the changes on the performance of the system can be predicted by model testing before attempting the modifications. at different pressures. ‡ Models should be carefully designed for reliable prediction of the prototype performance. . ‡ Model testing is also used for evaluating proposed modifications to existing systems. these are cheaper to build and test.

‡ Consider the case of drag on a sphere of diameter d moving at a speed U through a fluid of density and viscosity . ).Nondimensional Parameters and Dynamic Similarity ‡ Arranging the variables in terms of dimensionless products is especially useful in presenting experimental data.U. . . The drag force can be written as D = f(d.

and so on. . and fixed. we would have to conduct an experiment to determine D vs d. keeping d.‡ If we do not form dimensionless groups. and fixed. such a duplication of effort is unnecessary if we write the above equation in terms of dimensionless groups. ‡ However. . ‡ We would then have to conduct an experiment to determine D as a function of U. keeping U. A dimensional analysis of equation gives .

‡ we could obtain all the data of Figure in one wind tunnel experiment in which we determine D for various values of U . ‡ It is clear that we need not vary the fluid viscosity or density at all.‡ A dimensional analysis of equation reduces the number of variables from five to two. and consequently a single experimental curve ‡ Not only is the presentation of data united and simplified.the cost of experimentation is drastically reduced.


. T nm ) ± ± . T np ) T 1m ! f (T 2m . T 3 ...Similitude ‡ Similitude ± ± Predict prototype behavior from model results Models resemble prototype. T 3 p ...T n ) T 1 p ! f (T 2 p ....... but are ‡ ‡ ‡ Different size (usually smaller) and may operate in Different fluid and under Different conditions ± Problem described in terms of dimensionless parameters which may apply to the model or the prototype Suppose it describes the prototype A similar relationship can be written for a model of the prototype T1 ! f (T 2 . T 3m ..

. T nm ! T np ‡ then Similarity requirements or modeling laws T 1m ! T 1 p Dependent variable for prototype will be the same as in the model .Similitude ‡ If the model is designed & operated under conditions that T 2m ! T 2 p T 3m ! T 3 p ..

Model will have: FD ! f ( w. ) h Q w 2 VV 2 T 1m ! f (T 2m . V.V ) T 1 ! f (T 2 . Drag is a function of: w. Q . m m m) 2 2 hm Qm wm V mVm m F ‡ And the prototype will have: T 1 p ! f (T 2 p .Example ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ Consider predicting the drag on a thin rectangular plate (w*h) placed normal to the flow. V Dimensional analysis shows: And this applies BOTH to a model and a prototype We can design a model to predict the drag on a prototype. T 3 p ) w p V pV p w p . h. T 3m ) F ‡ ‡ w V V w ! f( m . T 3 ) w VVw ! f( . ) ! f( 2 2 Qp hp w p V pV p p F . Q. h. V .

Example ‡Similarity conditions Geometric similarity T2 ! T2p wp w ! h hp   w ! h wp hp Gives us the size of the model Dynamic similarity T 3m ! T 3 p V mVm wm V pV p w p ! Qm Qp Q V p wp   Vm ! m Vp Q p V m wm Gives us the velocity in the model Then T 1m ! T 1 p FDm 2 2 wm V mVm ! FDp 2 w 2 V pV p p ¨ wp ¸ V p ¨Vp ¸ ¹ © ¹ F   FDp ! © © w ¹ V m © V ¹ Dm ª mº ª mº 2 2 .

4. Solved for the unknown exponents. 6.) Form a dimensionless parameter Tby multiplying one of the non-repeating variables by the product of the repeating variables. List all n variables involved in the problem Express each variables in terms of [M] [L] [T ] dimensions (m) Determine the required number of dimensionless parameters (n ± m) Select a number of repeating variables = m (All dimensions must be included in this set and each repeating variable must be independent of the others. 2. 3. «) = 0. 7. . 5. 8.Exponent Method 1. T2. each raised to an unknown exponent. T3. Repeat this process for each non-repeating variable Express result as a relationship among the dimensionless parameters ± F(T1.

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