Thermal engineering is a specialized sub-discipline of mechanical engineering that deals with the movement of heat energy and transfer. The energy can be transferred between two mediums or transformed into other forms of energy. A thermal engineer will have knowledge of thermodynamics and the process to convert generated energy from thermal sources into chemical, mechanical, or electrical energy. Many process plants use a wide variety of machines that utilize components that use heat transfer in some way. Many plants use heat exchangers in their operations. A thermal engineer must allow the proper amount of energy to be transferred for correct use. Too much and the components could fail, too little and the system will not function at all. Thermal engineers must have an understanding of economics and the components that they will be servicing or interacting with. Some components that a thermal engineer could work with include heat exchangers, heat sinks, bi-metals strips, radiators and many more. Some systems that require a thermal engineer include; Boilers, heat pumps, water pumps, engines, and more.
Fluid mechanics is the branch of engineering concerned with the mechanics of fluids (liquids, gases, and plasmas) and the forces on them. It has applications in a wide range of disciplines, including mechanical, civil, chemical and biomedicalengineering, geophysics, oceanography, meteorology, astrophysics, and biology. It can be divided into fluid statics, the study of fluids at rest; and fluid dynamics, the study of the effect of forces on fluid motion. It is a branch of continuum mechanics, a subject which models matter without using the information that it is made out of atoms; that is, it models matter from a macroscopic viewpoint rather than from microscopic. Fluid mechanics, especially fluid dynamics, is an active field of research, typically mathematically complex. Many problems are partly or wholly unsolved and are best addressed by numerical methods, typically using computers. A modern discipline, called computational fluid dynamics (CFD), is devoted to this approach. Particle image velocimetry, an experimental method for visualizing and analyzing fluid flow, also takes advantage of the highly visual nature of fluid flow.