Hydraulics has a reputation for being a complex, even intimidating, discipline. Put simply, hydraulics is the study of how water and similar fluids behave and can be harnessed for practical use. It is one of the fundamental scientific and engineering subjects and many professions demand a working knowledge of its basic concepts, yet most hydraulics textbooks are aimed at readers with a strong engineering or mathematical background.
Practical Hydraulics approaches the subject from basic principles and demonstrates how these are applied in practice. It is clearly written and includes many illustrations and examples. It will appeal to a wide range of professionals and students needing an introduction to the subject, from farmers irrigating crops to fire crews putting out fires with high-pressure water hoses. However hydraulics is not just about water. Many other fluids behave in the same way and so affect a wide range of people from doctors, needing to know how blood flows in veins, to car designers, wanting to save fuel by reducing drag.
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Melvyn Kay, formerly Senior Lecturer in Hydraulics and Irrigation at Cranfield University, UK, currently practices as a consultant in irrigation water management.
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