3.185 | Fall 2003 | Undergraduate

Transport Phenomena in Materials Engineering


Course Introduction

Prof. Adam Powell IV


Lectures will be held three days a week for one hour. Recitations will meet two days a week for one hour. Students may attend either (or both) of the recitations.


Welty, James, Charles E. Wicks, Robert E. Wilson, and Gregory L. Rorrer. Fundamentals of Momentum, Heat, and Mass Transfer. 4th ed. New York: John Wiley and Sons Inc., January 2000. ISBN: 9780471381495.

Optional Readings

Poirier, D. R., and G. H. Geiger. Transport Phenomena in Materials Processing. Warrendale, PA: TMS, 1994. ISBN: 9780873392723.

Incropera, Frank P., and David P. DeWitt. Introduction to Heat and Mass Transfer. New York: John Wiley & Sons Inc., July 2000. ISBN: 9780471390817.


Grades will be determined from exams and eight homework assignments as follows:

Problem Sets 16%
Math Quiz 10%
Test 1 20%
Test 2 20%
Final Exam 34%

General Overview


This section will use a phenomenon which you have already studied extensively to introduce two of the foundation methodologies of the course. The first is coupling conservation and constitutive equations to give closed-form (partial) differential equation(s) in one or more field variables. The second is dimensional analysis, which identifies the key dimensionless parameters in a given problem and allows us to quickly characterize all of its possible solutions using as few parameters as possible. The mass transfer Biot number will be used to illustrate this process.

Heat Conduction and Radiation

This section will take advantage of the mathematical similarity between diffusion and heat conduction to introduce you to a new phenomenon. Building on the principle of conservation of thermal energy, we will introduce new solutions to the (thermal) diffusion equation, define the heat transfer Biot number, and examine conduction in a solid with moving boundaries. Heat transfer by radiation will also be covered at some length, and coupled with conduction as a boundary condition. This section will close with an introduction to convection using a moving solid as an example.

Fluid Dynamics

This section will attempt to present Newtonian and non-Newtonian fluid dynamics using principles of conservation of mass and momentum in the same methodology as was used for diffusion and heat conduction. We will present the complete Navier-Stokes equations describing fluid flow, and use them to solve problems in which flow velocity varies in just one direction. The Reynolds number will be defined and related to the transition to turbulence. Boundary layer descriptions of flow near surfaces will be developed, and used to calculate the drag force on simple bodies moving relative to a fluid. Turbulence will be described qualitatively, and modeling methods based on Reynolds stresses will be developed and related to effective turbulent viscosity and eddy length scales. Finally we will discuss overall mass and momentum balances on large control volumes.

Heat and Mass Transfer

This section will begin by applying the same large control volume methodology to thermal energy and species transport, and discuss batch/continuous reactor design in this context. It will then return to the Navier-Stokes equations, and their coupling with species diffusion and heat conduction to describe heat and mass transfer in fluids. We will calculate heat and mass transfer coefficients under steady laminar and turbulent flow conditions in simple geometries, driven both by external forces and thermal/solutal buoyancy, and discuss application to materials process engineering. At least four new dimensionless parameters will be introduced to describe all of the coupling phenomena involved.

ABET Statements for 3.185 (PDF)

Course Info

As Taught In
Fall 2003
Learning Resource Types
groups Course Introduction
assignment_turned_in Problem Sets with Solutions
grading Exams with Solutions
notes Lecture Notes