In physics, a fluid is a substance that continually deforms (flows) under an applied shear stress. Fluids are a subset of the phases of matter and include liquids, gases, plasmas and, to some extent, plastic solids.
Although the term "fluid" includes both the liquid and gas phases, in common usage, "fluid" is often used as a synonym for "liquid", with no implication that gas could also be present. For example, "brake fluid" is hydraulic oil and will not perform its required function if there is gas in it. This colloquial usage of the term is also common in medicine and in nutrition ("take plenty of fluids").
Liquids form a free surface (that is, a surface not created by the container) while gases do not. The distinction between solids and fluid is not entirely obvious. The distinction is made by evaluating the viscosity of the substance. Silly Putty can be considered to behave like a solid or a fluid, depending on the time period over which it is observed. It is best described as a viscoelastic fluid. There are many examples of substances proving difficult to classify. A particularly interesting one is pitch, as demonstrated in the pitch drop experiment currently running at the University of Queensland.
Read more about Fluid: Physics
Other articles related to "fluid, fluids":
... stress is a function of strain, but in a fluid, shear stress is a function of strain rate ... law which describes the role of pressure in characterizing a fluid's state ... between shear stress, and the rate of strain and its derivatives, fluids can be characterized as one of the following Newtonian fluids where stress is directly proportional to rate of strain Non-Newtonian fluids ...
Famous quotes containing the word fluid:
“Eye, gazelle, delicate wanderer,
Drinker of horizons fluid line;
Ear that suspends on a chord
The spirit drinking timelessness;
Touch, love, all senses;”
—Stephen Spender (19091995)
“In place of a world, there is a city, a point, in which the whole life of broad regions is collecting while the rest dries up. In place of a type-true people, born of and grown on the soil, there is a new sort of nomad, cohering unstably in fluid masses, the parasitical city dweller, traditionless, utterly matter-of-fact, religionless, clever, unfruitful, deeply contemptuous of the countryman and especially that highest form of countryman, the country gentleman.”
—Oswald Spengler (18801936)
“There are no fixtures in nature. The universe is fluid and volatile. Permanence is but a word of degrees. Our globe seen by God is a transparent law, not a mass of facts. The law dissolves the fact and holds it fluid.”
—Ralph Waldo Emerson (18031882)