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Continuity Equation

  1. Jul 23, 2007 #1
    I have this one as well, using the continuity equation to explain how a jet engine provides a foward thrust for an airplane. I have the equation but can some one explain this to me in laymen's terms.

    \frac{\partial\rho\left(\vec{r},t\right)}{\partial t}+\nabla\cdot\left[\rho\left(\vec{r},t\right)\vec{v}\left(\vec{r},t\right)\right]= 0[/tex]

    Thanks in advance for your help.

    Last edited: Jul 23, 2007
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 23, 2007 #2


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    The continuity equation is an equation related to conservation of mass.

    The rate of change of density (in a constant volume) is equal the net mass flux across the boundary of a differential volume.

    If the net flux is zero, i.e. the mass flow in = mass flow out, then there is no change in density (and no accumulation or decrease in mass) in a fixed volume.
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