Topics in Fluid Dynamics

A graph demonstrating Lagrangian trajectories.

Five day–long Lagrangian trajectories observed by freely–drifting floats (green worms) and the Eulerian horizontal current vector measured by a fixed current meter (black vector) that is scaled similarly. The approximate equality of these measurements is a demonstration of the Fundamental Principle of Kinematics. These data are a snapshot from a four month–long period that is animated in the cover page of the essay on Lagrangian and Eulerian representations of fluid flow. (Image by James F. Price. Used with permission.)


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Resource Description

Course Description

This collection of three essays was developed from the author's experience teaching the course Fluid Dynamics of the Atmosphere and Ocean, offered to graduate students entering the MIT/WHOI Joint Program in Oceanography. The essays are:

1. Dimensional Analysis of Models and Data Sets: Similarity Solutions and Scaling Analysis,
2. A Coriolis Tutorial, and
3. Lagrangian and Eulerian Representations of Fluid Flow: Kinematics and the Equations of Motion

The goal of this resource is to help each student master the concepts and mathematical tools that make up the foundation of classical and geophysical fluid dynamics. These essays treat these topics in considerably greater depth than a comprehensive fluids textbook can afford, and they are accompanied by data files (MATLAB® and Fortan) that allows some application and experimentation. They should be suitable for self study.

Related Content

James Price. RES.12-001 Topics in Fluid Dynamics. Spring 2010. Massachusetts Institute of Technology: MIT OpenCourseWare, License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA.

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