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Fluid dynamics vs Electrodynamics

  1. Fluid Dynamics

    11 vote(s)
  2. Electrodynamics

    15 vote(s)
  1. Jul 19, 2007 #1
    If you could only do one which one would you choose? And why?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 19, 2007 #2
    Electrodynamics. Its more in line with what I'm doing.
  4. Jul 19, 2007 #3
    fluid dyanamics. Its more in line with what I'm doing.
    geeez i dont even know what they teach in electrodyanamics
  5. Jul 19, 2007 #4


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    Gold Member

    Obviously, no can answer that without understanding in what context the question is asked.
  6. Jul 19, 2007 #5
    yes i agree. there are lots and lots of conditions affecting one's choice
  7. Jul 19, 2007 #6


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    I'd do both. I don't like arbitrary choices.

    Why would one have to choose one or the other.

    A mechanical or aerospace engineer would choose fluid dynamics since that is part of MechE or AeroE.

    A physicist would choose either depending on interest. A plasma physicist would probably do both.

    A EE would choose electrodynamics. Someone interested in electronics or electrical engineering would find electrodynamics of more use than fluid dynamics.
  8. Jul 19, 2007 #7
    i am doing fluid dynamics actually
  9. Jul 20, 2007 #8
    for straight-up physics, electrodynamics.

    seems like fluid mechanics has been phased out of the american physics undergrad curriculum, so you won't be seen as deficient for not having taken it.

    now, if you're in engineering, that's a different ball game.
  10. Jul 20, 2007 #9
    I've heard they use the same maths but fluid mechanics would be more intuitive so might be better to do it prior to electrodynamics. But the problem is on the appearance of it, it seems so boring which is not a good thing to say but that how I feel. I can only fit one of the two though.
  11. Jul 20, 2007 #10
    If I had to choose, electrodynamics. The physical processes behind fluid dynamics, while evidently complicated, are intuitive - the only challenge is familiarity with the mathematics. Electrodynamics is likely to involve a lot more head-scratching. I'd much rather brush up on fluid dynamics by myself later on than electrodynamics, which I'd much rather be taught by someone competent.
  12. Jul 24, 2007 #11
    I had to take both. I picked fluids just because it applies more the the fields im interested in, Heat transfer and aerodynamics.
  13. Jul 24, 2007 #12
    Stay away from fluid mechanics and take Aerodynamics using Andersons book. There are a ton of Junk Fluid Mechanics books out there.
  14. Jul 24, 2007 #13
    How would you compare against the two? Which was harder to learn?
  15. Jul 25, 2007 #14
    I found the electrical classes harder because when i started them I hadn't even gotten to multivariable calc and it didn't get a good grip of the fundamental E&M derivations. Fluids was easier because by then I had finished all my undergrad math requirements, and the calculations were not so challenging.

    The decision should come down to two things. Who's the professor, and which one do you have more interest in. If you take the class with someone who is competent in the field, and who you can follow their lecture you should do well in either. However, you need to evaluate your overall career goal as to what field you want to specialize in.

    Not sure what point in your academic career you are at, but I hope that helped.
  16. Jul 28, 2007 #15
    Continuum modeling is Continuum modeling. The physics is different, but ALL the governing equations are based on fields. If you understand the general field equations you can do both. Simple things to keep in mind: a gradient of a scaler is a vector no matter which area you do, and most importantly: momentum, mass, charge, and energy always balance.

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