Jean Le Rond D'Alembert: A New Theory of the Resistance of Fluids

  • Julián Simón Calero

Part of the Studies in History and Philosophy of Science book series (AUST, volume 47)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-ix
  2. A New Theory of the Resistance of Fluid

  3. Introduction to the Essay

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 133-133
    2. Julián Simón Calero
      Pages 135-145
    3. Julián Simón Calero
      Pages 147-151
    4. Julián Simón Calero
      Pages 153-159
    5. Julián Simón Calero
      Pages 161-166
  4. Analysis of the Essay

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 167-167
    2. Julián Simón Calero
      Pages 169-171
    3. Julián Simón Calero
      Pages 173-186
    4. Julián Simón Calero
      Pages 187-220
    5. Julián Simón Calero
      Pages 221-229
    6. Julián Simón Calero
      Pages 231-241
    7. Julián Simón Calero
      Pages 243-256
    8. Julián Simón Calero
      Pages 257-264
    9. Julián Simón Calero
      Pages 265-271
  5. Back Matter
    Pages 273-292

About this book


In the commentaries to this book we try to understand d’Alembert thoughts and how he contrives to translate his ideas on mechanics to the fluid realm with a new and radical point of view; how he arrives at the first two fundamental differential equations among the velocity components; and how he tries to reduce the resistance of a moving body, which is a change of its momentum, to the hydrostatical pressure, which is related to the gravity. All this knowing that his mechanics has no forces and no pressures as well, and that the fluids are aggregates of individual particles.

The essay A New Theory of the Resistance of Fluids was a turning point in Fluid Mechanics because clearly, for the first time, the resistance is shown as the results of a fluid subjected to differential equations in a continuous mode instead of a set of impacts of individual particles. This contribution has been recognized by the scholars. However, only partial attention has been paid to this work, which can be justified due to the difficulty in its reading and also because it was eclipsed by the publication, a few years later, of Euler’s three Memoirs that established modern hydrodynamics.


D’Alembert theory of fluids Early fluid differential equations Fluid mechanics in 18th century Resistance of fluids Resistance paradox

Editors and affiliations

  • Julián Simón Calero
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Logic, Philosophy and History of ScienceUNEDMadridSpain

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer International Publishing AG 2018
  • Publisher Name Springer, Cham
  • eBook Packages History History (R0)
  • Print ISBN 978-3-319-67999-0
  • Online ISBN 978-3-319-68000-2
  • Series Print ISSN 0929-6425
  • Series Online ISSN 2215-1958
  • Buy this book on publisher's site