Part of the Advances in Geophysical and Environmental Mechanics and Mathematics book series (AGEM)


This chapter provides a first impression of what the general aims and scopes of fluid and thermodynamics are as special topics of engineering and natural sciences. In a first section short historical notes and definitions of the subject fields are given: What scientific fields are represented by ‘Mechanics’ and ‘Thermodynamics’? What terminology is used in both specialties to set the important vocabulary within Newtonian mechanics and in thermodynamics as representative axioms to arrive at balances of mass, momenta, energy and entropy? Concepts like ‘body’, ‘motion’, ‘force’, ‘power’, ‘work’, ‘temperature’ and ‘heat’ need precise definitions to define Newtonian mechanics and the First Law of Thermodynamics. These laws form principal statements of universality; however, to formulate any mathematically closed theory, statements of material behavior are requested. In a second subsection, properties of liquids are briefly discussed. This is done with focus on simple shear experiments to shed light on behaviors of solids and fluids. Elastic and viscous behavior are described as are the special responses of elastic, viscous and more complicated behavior of pure water and salty water as functions of density, pressure, temperature and salinity, known as thermal equations of state.


Newtonian mechanics Irreversible thermodynamics Definition of solids fluids and gases Material response Elastic viscous behavior Thermal equation of states 


  1. 1.
    Bingham, E.C.: Fluidity and Plasticity. McGraw Hill, New York (1922)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Bird, R.B., Stewart, W.E., Lightfoot, E.N.: Transport Phenomena, 2nd edn. (2006). Wiley, New York (1960). ISBN: 13-978-047011 5398Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Carmody, T., Kobus, H.: Translation of Hydrodynamica (Daniel Bernoulli) and Hydraulica (Johann Bernoulli). Dover Publications, New York (1964)Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Euler, L.: Mémoire de l’ Academie des Sciences de Berlin, 5, 185–217 (1750). L. Euleri Opera Omnia, ser. Sec, 5, 81–108 (1752)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Euler, L.: Mémoire de l’ Academie des Sciences de Berlin, 11, 274–315 (1755). Opera Omnia, ser. Sec., 12, 54–91Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Hooke, R.: Micrographia or Some Physiological Descriptions of Minute bodies Made by Magnifying Glasses with Observations and Inquiries Thereupon. London (1665). Dover Publications, New York (1961)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Hooke, R.: Lectiones Cutleriana, or a Collection of Lectures. John Martyn Printer to the Royal Society (1679)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Newton, I.: Philosphiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica. London (1687) 1st edn. (1703) 2nd edn. (1726) 3rd ednGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Norton, F.H.: The Creep of Steel at High Temperatures. McGraw-Hill Book Company, New York [etc.] (1929)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Truesdell, C.A.: The Rational Mechanics of Flexible or Elastic Bodies, 1638–1788: Introduction to Leonhardi Euleri Opera Omnia, Vol. X and XI, Seriei Secundae. Orell Füssli (1960)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Young, T.: A Course of Lectures on Natural Philosophy and the Mechanical Arts. Taylor and Walton, London (1807)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Versuchsanstalt für Wasserbau, Hydrologie und GlaziologieETH ZürichZürichSwitzerland
  2. 2.Department of Mechanical EngineeringTechnische Universität DarmstadtDarmstadtGermany

Personalised recommendations