The efficiency of overshot and undershot waterwheels. (English) Zbl 1137.70304

Summary: The waterwheel evolved over two millennia to become an efficient machine. We analyse the physics of waterwheels, and construct simple models that show why the two most important types had very different efficiencies. Our analysis reveals the important design parameters, and captures the essential features of our oldest mechanical power source.


70A05 Axiomatics, foundations
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