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Online Course

Advanced Fluid Mechanics: Fundamentals

Massachusetts Institute of Technology via edX


This course covers the fundamentals of advanced fluid mechanics: including its connections to continuum mechanics more broadly, hydrostatics, buoyancy and rigid body accelerations, inviscid flow, and the application of Bernoulli’s theorems, as well as applications of control volume analysis for more complex fluid flow problems of engineering interest. This course features lecture and demo videos, lecture concept checks, practice problems, and extensive problem sets.

This course is the first of a three-course sequence in incompressible fluid mechanics: Advanced Fluid Mechanics: Fundamentals, Advanced Fluid Mechanics: The Navier-Stokes Equations for Viscous Flows, and Advanced Fluid Mechanics: Potential Flows, Lift, Circulation & Boundary Layers. The series is based on material in MIT’s class 2.25 Advanced Fluid Mechanics, one of the most popular first-year graduate classes in MIT’s Mechanical Engineering Department. This series is designed to help people gain the ability to apply the governing equations, the principles of dimensional analysis and scaling theory to develop physically-based, approximate models of complex fluid physics phenomena. People who complete these three consecutive courses will be able to apply their knowledge to analyze and break down complex problems they may encounter in industrial and academic research settings.

The material is of relevance to engineers and scientists across a wide range of mechanical chemical and process industries who must understand, analyze and optimize flow processes and fluids handling problems. Applications are drawn from hydraulics, aero & hydrodynamics as well as the chemical process industries.


  1. Continuum viewpoint and the equations of motion
  2. Hydrostatic analysis of fluids in static equilibrium, buoyancy
  3. Inviscid flow (differential approach): Euler’s equation, Bernoulli’s integral, and the effects of streamline curvature. The Mechanical Energy Equation
  4. Control volume theorems (integral approach): Mass conservation, linear momentum theorem, angular momentum theorem, first and second laws of thermodynamics.
  5. Application to increasingly complex systems

Taught by

Gareth McKinley, Bavand Keshavarz, John Liu and Emily Welsh

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