Concept# Center of pressure (fluid mechanics)

Summary

In fluid mechanics, the center of pressure is the point where the total sum of a pressure field acts on a body, causing a force to act through that point. The total force vector acting at the center of pressure is the surface integral of the pressure vector field across the surface of the body. The resultant force and center of pressure location produce an equivalent force and moment on the body as the original pressure field.
Pressure fields occur in both static and dynamic fluid mechanics. Specification of the center of pressure, the reference point from which the center of pressure is referenced, and the associated force vector allows the moment generated about any point to be computed by a translation from the reference point to the desired new point. It is common for the center of pressure to be located on the body, but in fluid flows it is possible for the pressure field to exert a moment on the body of such magnitude that the center of pressure is located outside the body

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