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Considerable simplification attends the supposition that the motion is always the same at the same place—is steady, as we say—and fortunately this covers many problems of importance. Consider the flow of water along a pipe whose section varies. If the section were uniform, the pressure would vary along the length only in consequence of friction, which now we are neglecting. In the proposed pipe how will the pressure vary? I will not prophesy as to a Royal Institution audience, but I believe that most unsophisticated people suppose that a contracted place would give rise to an increased pressure. As was known to the initiated long ago, nothing can be further from the fact. The experiment is easily tried, either with air or water, so soon as we are provided with the right sort of tube. A suitable shape is shown in fig. 1, but it is rather troublesome to construct in metal.
Fig. 1.
W. Froude found paraffin-wax the most convenient material for ship models, and I have followed him in the experiment now shown. A brass tube is filled with candle-wax and bored out to the desired shape, as is easily done with templates of tin plate. When I blow through, a suction is developed at the narrows, as is witnessed by the rise of liquid in a manometer connected laterally.
In the laboratory, where dry air from an acoustic bellows or a gas-holder is available, I have employed successfully tubes built up of cardboard, for a circular cross-section is not necessary. ^Three or more precisely similar pieces, cut for example to the shape shown in fig. 2 and joined together
Fig. 2.ely to be important.' Thus a solid body, submerged to a sufficient depth, should experience no resistance to its motion through water. On this principle the screw of a submerged boat would be useless, but, on the other hand, its services would not be needed. It is little wonder that practical men should declare that theoretical hydrodynamics has nothing at all to do with real fluids. Later we will return to some of these difficulties, not yet fully surmounted, but for the moment I will call your attention to simple phenomena of which theory can give a satisfactory account.length.