Dimensional Analysis and Important Parameters

  • Shih-I Pai


In chapter IV, we discussed the fundamental equations of magnetogasdynamics and other cases of plasma dynamics These fundamental equations are nonlinear. There is no general method of finding the solutions of these nonlinear equations. In order to bring out the essential features of the flow problem, it is desirable to find important parameters which characterize the flow problem. These parameters are very useful in the analysis of experimental results. There are two methods (4) to find these parameters: one is known as inspection analysis and the other, dimensional analysis. In the inspection analysis, we reduce the fundamental equations to non-dimensional form and obtain the non-dimensional parameters from the resultant equations as we did in chapter IV, § 4. In dimensional analysis we form non-dimensional parameters from the physical quantities occurring in the flow problem. Both methods give the same results. In this chapter we shall use dimensional analysis to find the important non-dimensional parameters of plasma dynamics.


Mach Number Free Path Froude Number Flow Problem Dimensional Analysis 
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© Springer-Verlag GmbH Wien 1962

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shih-I Pai
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute for Fluid Dynamics and Applied MathematicsUniversity of MarylandCollege ParkUSA

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