Considering that we breathe fluids, drink fluids, and are largely made up of fluids, fluid mechanics is a topic of fundamental importance to many fields of study. CE 251 is an engineering fundamentals course emphasizing the application of basic principles of physics to engineering problems with fluids, especially water. In this sense it is similar to ES courses like Statics or Strength of Materials, except that we are working with fluids rather than solids. The course is particularly important for those students interested in careers in water resources, or environmental science & engineering, and fluid mechanics is a component of the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam.
Renaissance man and engineer – one of the very first to do experimental fluid mechanics and comment on the beauty of fluids in motion (pics from Wikimedia Commons).
Dye experiment showing Laminar to Turbulent transition in pipe flow
Simulation of vortex shedding downstream of a flat plate
Galloping Girtie – the TNB collapse
from Wired.com, The Weird and Beautiful World of Fluid Dynamics