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Fluid Mechanics: Pipes & Pumps in Parallel

Pipes that are in parallel will experience the same pressure loss across each pipe. In addition, each pipe will experience a different flowrate of fluid going through it. Refer to equation 1 to calculate the different flow rates in each pipe when the same type of fluid is flowing through each pipe.

Flow rate equation of pipes in parallel (1)

Q = Flow Rate


Pipes in parallel

Equation 1 is only for a pipe system that is in parallel that has the same fluid flowing through each pipe. However, there can be cases when the fluid flowing through each pipe is not the same. When this happens, the mass flow rate of the fluid should be used since it also considers the density of the fluid. Refer to equation 2.

mass flow rate equation for pipes in parallel (2)

ρ = Density


Identical Pumps in Parallel

Identical pumps that are in parallel behave the same as pipes that are in parallel. They will increase the fluids flow rate by the number of identical pumps that are in parallel while the pressure head will remain the same. Refer to equation 3.

Flow rate equation for pumps in parallel (3)

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