33930 - Aerodynamics M

Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2018/2019

Learning outcomes

The student learns the notions necessary to understand the phenomena related to the motion of a fluid around a body, in particular for the study of the drag of vehicles, of the lifting surfaces and of the banding of some types of fluid machinery.

Course contents

Introduction to the course. Recall of vector calculus and fluid mechanics.

Aerostatics. International Standard Atmosphere

Bernoulli’s theorem for compressible fluids. Potential flows.

Two-dimensional flows: functions of complex variable. Conformal mapping.

Complex potential and velocity. Potential of uniform stream. Blasius' formulas. Kutta-Joukowski theorem.

Potential of a Source, a Doublet and a vortex. Uniform stream around a circle. Lift. Joukowski’s Transformation. Flat plate, symmetric profile; general Joukowski profile.

Two-dimensional flows: Thin-airfoil theory.

Finite Wing: Horseshoe vortex. Lift, downwash velocity and induced drag. Wings with minimum induced drag.

Boudary layer’s equations: laminar boundary layer along a flat plate. Turbulent boundary layer along a flat plate. Separation of boundary layer.

Bluff bodies.

Compressible flows: subsonic and supersonic flows; linearized theory

Specific aerodynamic problems of motorcycles

Elements of dynamic similarity.



Mattioli, Aerodinamica, Ed. Levrotto & Bella

Houghton/Carpenter, Aerodynamics for engineering students, Ed. Arnold

Kuethe/Chow, Foundations of aerodynamics, Ed. Wiley

W.-H. Hucho, Aerodynamics of Road Vehicles, Ed. SAE

G. Buresti, Elements of Fluid Dynamics, Ed. ICP

Teaching methods


Attendance is recommended for better learning of concepts, but does not affect the final evaluation process.

Assessment methods

The assessment is done through an oral test during which the student is called to explain concepts, demonstrations and principles concerning the behavior of  bodies in an uniform stream.

In order to pass the exam, the student must demonstrate sufficient knowledge of all the subjects and not present significant gaps.

The calendar of oral tests is published well in advance on the AlmaEsami web platform of the University of Bologna.

Teaching tools

Class lectures with auxiliary documents provided by the teacher

Office hours

See the website of Gianbattista Scarpi