Fluid Mechanics Essay

1044 words - 5 pages

When the term Fluid Mechanics is used throughout science and engineering many people often think of pipes, pumps, airplanes, and materials. What people don’t realize is that fluid mechanics plays and important role not only outside the human body, but inside as well. The flow of blood through arteries, veins, and organs can all be studied using fluid mechanics. There are many different variables that can influence these studies such as heart rate, blood pressure, and buildup along the surfaces that the blood travels. Air is also another fluid that flows throughout the human body. Air, like water, is quite the phenomenon as it enters the body with one chemical composition and leaves altered. ...view middle of the document...

Researchers used high speed imaging to capture the patterns of coughs and sneezes. After performing a number of experiments and mathematical models the researchers began to pick up on the fluid mechanisms behind the sneezes and coughs. Models of the sneezes and coughs were then created by altering models of sedimentation from turbulent fluids. Previously it was thought that the larger particles of a sneeze or cough traveled much further than the smaller particles. This is quite easy to assume, because the larger particles are felt when someone nearby sneezes accompanied by a breeze of air. Little did people know, that breeze of air had the capabilities of transporting the bacteria straight into one’s body upon inhaling, as opposed to just leaving residue on the skin that can be easily cleaned off. Throughout the study the transmission of bacteria was split into two groups, long range airborne transmission via droplet nuclie and short range large droplet transmission via direct contact. When studying the mechanics behind a sneeze or cough there are many different variables that must be taken into consideration. Viscosity and density play a large role in the transmission of bacteria. If the mucous is thicker with a larger particle size it will be quick to fall to the ground as opposed to lighter and less viscous mucous that could transition into the gas phase upon exiting the mouth or nose. Temperature and humidity also impacted whether or not the droplet was likely to transition from a large heavy short range particle to a light long range particle through evaporation.The exit velocity and pressure behind the sneeze or cough can have a large impact on the range of the bacteria. The height of a person and direction of their face can also contribute to germs being forced into the air longer or directed straight to the ground. After the studies were performed researchers were surprised to find out that that the smaller drops are far more dangerous than the larger drops and stay suspended in a cloud of gas that can travel for meters. It was found that the gas clouds not only circulate,...

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