Understanding Aerodynamics: Arguing from the Real Physics

Understanding Aerodynamics: Arguing from the Real Physics

Author(s): Doug McLean

Published Online: 15 NOV 2012 10:08PM EST

Print ISBN: 9781119967514

Online ISBN: 9781118454190

DOI: 10.1002/9781118454190

About this Book

Much-needed, fresh approach that brings a greater insight into the physical understanding of aerodynamics

Based on the author's decades of industrial experience with Boeing, this book helps students and practicing engineers to gain a greater physical understanding of aerodynamics. Relying on clear physical arguments and examples, Mclean provides a much-needed, fresh approach to this sometimes contentious subject without shying away from addressing "real" aerodynamic situations as opposed to the oversimplified ones frequently used for mathematical convenience. Motivated by the belief that engineering practice is enhanced in the long run by a robust understanding of the basics as well as real cause-and-effect relationships that lie behind the theory, he provides intuitive physical interpretations and explanations, debunking commonly-held misconceptions and misinterpretations, and building upon the contrasts provided by wrong explanations to strengthen understanding of the right ones.

  • Provides a refreshing view of aerodynamics that is based on the author's decades of industrial experience yet is always tied to basic fundamentals.
  • Provides intuitive physical interpretations and explanations, debunking commonly-held misconceptions and misinterpretations
  • Offers new insights to some familiar topics, for example, what the Biot-Savart law really means and why it causes so much confusion, what "Reynolds number" and "incompressible flow" really mean, and a real physical explanation for how an airfoil produces lift.
  • Addresses "real" aerodynamic situations as opposed to the oversimplified ones frequently used for mathematical convenience, and omits mathematical details whenever the physical understanding can be conveyed without them.

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