31036 - Hydraulics T

Course Unit Page


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Clean water and sanitation Sustainable cities Climate Action

Academic Year 2021/2022

Learning outcomes

Knowledge of the basics of fluid mechanics and hydraulics. Specifically, the student will be able to evaluate i) the flow of perfect and real fluids; ii) the hydrostatic and dynamic thrust on surfaces; iii) the motion regime of a pipeline flow and of an open-channel flow; iv) the design of pipes and channels. Such learning outcomes will be the basis for the analysis and design of water management systems, hydraulic networks, urban water systems, river flood protection.

Course contents

Requirements/Prior knowledge

A prior knowledge and understanding of basic of calculus and physics is required to attend with profit this course. Typically, such knowledge is gained passing the exams of Calculus 1, Calculus 2, Physics 1, and Rational Mechanics.

Fluent spoken and written Italian is a necessary pre-requisite: all lectures and tutorials, and all study material will be in Italian.

Course contents


Preliminary remarks on fluid mechanics and hydraulics. Dimensions and units. Dimensional analysis: Buckingham Pi theorem. The fluid as a continuum. Fluid properties: density, viscosity, compressibility coefficient. State equation. Continuity equation.


Differential and integral equations of hydrostatics. Hydrostatic pressure distribution. Pressure measurement. Hydrostatic forces on plane and curved surfaces. Buoyancy and stability.

Fluid Dynamics

The stress and strain rate tensors. Constitutive equation. Newtonian and non-Newtonian fluids. Velocity and acceleration in fluid flow. Momentum equation and its applications. Euler equation. Bernoulli equation. Navier-Stokes equations. Reynolds experiment: laminar and turbulent flow. Elements of turbulence theory: Reynolds equation and Reynolds stress tensor. Hydrodynamic forces on surfaces. Flow through orifices. Flow in pipes and ducts.

Moody diagram. Calculation of head losses. Generalized Bernoulli Theorem. Multiple pipe systems. Pumping systems. Open-channel flow. Uniform flow, critical depth. Gradually varied flow and free-surface profiles. Hydraulic jump. Weirs and sluice gates. Venturi channel. Seepage flow. Unsteady 1-D pipe flow: water hammer equations.


Cengel, Cimbala. Meccanica dei fluidi. Mc-Graw-Hill 2011

Citrini, Noseda. Idraulica. CEA Milano 1987

Marchi, Rubatta. Meccanica dei Fluidi. UTET 1981

Teaching methods

The course consists of lectures, excercises in the class and scheduled excercises at the pc, and laboratory visits.

During the lectures, the key concepts and the theoretical and practical knowledge are illustrated. During the excercises in the class, example applications to schematic and real cases are performed. During the scheduled excercises at the pc, the students will be instructed about the group of excercises and the results will be verified through the Connect platform associated to the Cengel & Cimbala textbook.

Laboratory hours, held at the Hydraulic Engineering Lab in via Terracini, aim at illustrating most relevant phenomena in pressure and free-surface hydraulics.

Assessment methods

Achievements will be assessed by the means of a final exam, which consists of a written test and an oral discussion. The written session consists of a test, whose duration is fixed in 1 hour and is composed of 2 exercises, without the support of textbooks or notes. To be eligible to take the oral exam the student must score in the written test a minimum total of 18/30 points.

The oral exam must be taken no later than 4 months after the written test.

During classes, there are two midterm written tests; students passing both midterm exams can directly take the oral exam, no later than 4 months after the second midterm.

The oral session consists of technical conversation with the lecturer. The exam is aimed at assessing the acquired knowledge, the ability of synthesis and application of the key course contents.
To obtain a passing grade, students are required to demonstrate a good knowledge and understanding of the key concepts of the subject, together with good ability for applications.
Higher grades will be awarded to students who demonstrate the full knowledge of the subject, the capacity of a clear and critical presentation of the contents, the appropriate use of the technical language.
A failing grade will be awarded if the student shows knowledge gaps in the key-concepts of the subject, inappropriate use of the technical language, and/or logic failures in the analysis of the subject.

During the COVID emergency, the exam can be administered in a single session on Teams platform including exercises and theory. This will be indicated on the Almaesami platform as "Modalità online".

Teaching tools

Teaching tools regarding the exercises are available through the Connect platform related to the Cengel & Cimbala textbook.

Class transparencies are available at: https://iol.unibo.it/

Office hours

See the website of Vittorio Di Federico

See the website of Valentina Ciriello