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Physics LibreTexts

28.1: Ideal Fluids

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  • An ideal fluid is a fluid that is incompressible and no internal resistance to flow (zero viscosity). In addition ideal fluid particles undergo no rotation about their center of mass (irrotational). An ideal fluid can flow in a circular pattern, but the individual fluid particles are irrotational. Real fluids exhibit all of these properties to some degree, but we shall often model fluids as ideal in order to approximate the behavior of real fluids. When we do so, one must be extremely cautious in applying results associated with ideal fluids to non-ideal fluids.

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