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Mechanics is a basic component of the mechanical engineering principles which describe the foundations for the operation of mechanical systems. To learn more about these principles read this article.

In the article mentioned above, we covered the basic concepts of mechanics, which include:

  • Force
  • Torque
  • Work
  • Power

In this one, we are going to go deeper into some of the areas covered by the principle of mechanics such as statics, dynamics, fluid mechanics, and strength of materials.

Statics:

Statics is the study of forces affecting a mechanical system when there is no change in motion. In other words, the system is in static equilibrium, hence the name.

Here, Newton’s second law (F = ma) is applied assuming the value of the acceleration is zero (0), which results in:

This means that the sum of all forces can be written as equal to zero, which creates an equation or system of equations to find the values of the unknown forces acting on the system. Since forces are vectors, it is always useful to apply free-body diagrams to visualize the relation between forces.

Therefore, statics serve as a gateway to design and analyze objects, systems, and structures by applying Newtonian physics.

Dynamics:

Dynamics is the opposite of statics since dynamics studies the motion resulting from forces affecting a body or a system.

Again, Newton’s second law (F = ma) plays an important role, but acceleration is not zero anymore. Here the sum of the forces generates a change in motion measured by the acceleration.

Newton's Second Law
Illustration of Newton’s Second Law. Force = Mass x Acceleration

Obviously, dynamics is an essential part of the machine since it allows mechanical engineers to study aspects that are usually present in mechanical systems, such as:

  • Mass and inertia
  • Velocity
  • Acceleration
  • Displacement
  • Momentum
  • Torque

Moreover, when there is motion and applied forces, the balance of the system is affected and different kinds of effects, such as stress, must also be taken into account.

Fluid mechanics:

Fluid Mechanics and Aerodynamics | Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Fluid mechanics is the application of statics and dynamics to the study of fluids behavior. In other words, fluid mechanics studies how liquids, gases, and plasmas react when forces are applied to them whether at rest or in motion. Therefore, it is usually divided into fluid statics and fluid dynamics.

Fluid mechanics has a great number of applications in mechanical engineering. Among the most important applications there are:

  • Pumps
  • Turbines
  • Compressors
  • Piping
  • Heat exchangers

Strength of materials:

Also known as solid mechanics or mechanics of materials, the strength of materials makes reference to the study of methods used for calculating the resistance of different materials to stress and strain. This is especially important when analyzing the materials used in structural components like beams, columns, and shafts.

Common studies in mechanical engineering regarding the strength of materials include:

  • Determination of mechanical properties of materials.
  • Stress and strain resistance.
  • Tensile and hardness testing.
  • Fracture resistance.
  • Fatigue resistance.
  • Corrosion control.

Up to you:

This is only an overview of the areas covered by the principle of mechanics. Most of them are currently studied by means of computational technologies. For example, the fluid mechanics are usually studied via CFD simulations and the strength of materials via FEA with computer simulations provided by CAD software.

However, computers and software cannot do proper work if the required data is not input correctly. Knowledge and experience are required to achieve the most accurate results. That’s what we provide at Porticos, skillful application of the engineering sciences to provide actionable results.

Are you looking for help with your application? Let us help you, contact us now!

 

Keywords: mechanics, mechanical engineering, fluid mechanics