Following our trend of providing help to GATE aspirants in every way possible, we are here with our next article on “How to prepare for fluid mechanics in civil engineering for GATE?”

If we take a simple analysis of the weight-age of marks given to this topic out of 65.00 that is the total marks in the GATE civil engineering paper, then fluid mechanics will get 08.50 marks roughly, which is about 13% of the paper.

What makes fluid mechanics difficult for many students is that there are many assumptions to be made and exceptions to the rule. Hence one needs to understand the fluid mechanic’s GATE question problem properly and then decide the approach to the problem.

Syllabus for Fluid Mechanics for the GATE Civil Engineering Paper

For getting a good mark on an examination paper, the first and foremost thing an aspirant must take care of is the syllabus of the paper. Before making any study plan or preparation strategy or gathering any notes, it is completely essential to have an idea about what to expect in the examination hall.

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Syllabus for Fluid Mechanics GATE Exam

Section 1: Flow and Fluid Properties

Viscosity, the relationship between stress and strain rate for Newtonian fluids, incompressible and compressible flows, differences between laminar and turbulent flows. Hydrostatics: Buoyancy, manometry, forces on submerged bodies.

Section 2: Kinematics Eulerian and Lagrangian

Description of fluid motion, concept of local and convective accelerations, steady and unsteady flows.

Section 3: Integral Analysis

Control volume analysis for mass, momentum and energy.

Section 4: Differential Analysis

Differential equations of mass and momentum for incompressible flows: inviscid – Euler equation and viscous flows – Navier-Stokes equations, the concept of fluid rotation, vorticity, stream function, Exact solutions of Navier-Stokes equation for Couette Flow and Poiseuille flow.

Section 5: Inviscid Flows

Bernoulli’s equation – assumptions and applications, potential function, Elementary plane flows – uniform flow, source, sink and doublet and their superposition for potential flow past simple geometries.

Section 6: Dimensional Analysis

Concept of geometric, kinematic and dynamic similarity, some common non-dimensional parameters and their physical significance: Reynolds number, Froude number and Mach number.

Section 7: Internal Flows

Fully developed pipe flow, empirical relations for laminar and turbulent flows: friction factor and Darcy-Weisbach relation.

Section 8: Prandtl Boundary Layer Equations

Concept and assumptions, the qualitative idea of boundary layer and separation, streamlined and bluff bodies, drag and lift forces. Flow measurements: Basic ideas of flow measurement using venturi meter, pitot-static tube and orifice plate.

Important Topics in Fluid Mechanics

Understanding the syllabus and picking out the important and difficult parts help to understand which portion of the paper demands more focus. By having a clear knowledge of the important topics, you can have an idea about the question paper you might find in the exam hall.

Important Topics for Fluid Mechanics GATE Questions

# Pipe flow Impact of Jet

# Fluid kinematics

# Boundary layer

# Turbine

# Continuity

# Flow-through pipes

Books to Refer for Fluid Mechanics GATE Questions:

# Fluid Mechanics by R.K Bansal

# Fluid Mechanics by Yunus A. Cengel, John M. Cimbala

# Fluid Mechanics by F M White

Other than books, aspirants can also refer to various video tutorials for concept clearing and try collecting notes from those as well.

Important Tips for Fluid Mechanics Civil Engineering Paper

Other than the above-mentioned books, it is also suggested that you sketch the diagrams by yourself for a better understanding of the viscous flow. Visualisation is the key to be able to solve the problems here, so try and visualise the problem. Derive all the formulae by yourself once, it will help you understand a good way to approach the problems as well.

And lastly, although well known, practice! Join a test series and practice as many problems as possible before stepping into the examination. Look out for previous year questions and solve those too.

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But, if you have less time to prepare for the GATE Exam then doing all of the above may not be possible for you. In that,  it is recommended that you either get a personal tutor or join some online classes. The reason for both is the same – so that you get personal attention and guidance to solve your doubts. You can undoubtedly get your concepts cleared in much less time than you studying yourself.


There is no substitute to practice, as you all know the famous saying, ‘practice makes one perfect. So, make a strategy, get notes for the important topics, focus equally on each part of the syllabus, get expert guidance, try your hands on previous year questions and you are all good to go for the fluid mechanic’s GATE questions.

Now that your all queries regarding the fluid mechanics civil engineering papers in GATE have been addressed, how are you planning to start the preparation? Do let us know your answers by sharing your thoughts in the comment section below.