Mechanical Engineering Key Terms

Understand mechanical engineering terminology

Mechanical engineering is a basic engineering science that has a wide range of applications, from the design of an industrial product to its manufacturing, performance monitoring and servicing.

Whether you are buying mechanical engineering products or servicing any equipment that works on the principles of mechanical engineering, you will come across various technical terms related to this field. Alternatively, if you want to establish yourself in the field of mechanical engineering, you will need to understand the various technical terms used to indicate different streams of mechanical engineering, mechanical processes and standards followed by mechanical engineering companies.

This guide will introduce some key terms, such as fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, ASME standards and ASTM standards.

Fluid mechanics (or fluid dynamics)

As the name indicates, fluid mechanics deals with the study of fluids. Fluid mechanics has applications in various industries, such as automotive, construction, and refrigeration and air conditioning.


Thermodynamics is the study of conversion of heat into other forms of energy and the relation between the different process variables, such as temperature and pressure.


Metallurgy is the science of metals. It involves the study of different associated processes, such as exploration and mining, processing and metal forming.


Hydraulics is the sub-branch of fluid dynamics that studies hydraulic fluids and their behavior on pressurizing. Hydraulics focuses on the engineering uses of fluid properties.

Industrial engineering

For any industry, it is very important to increase the productivity of the process, achieve quality standards and assure safe working of equipment. Thorough knowledge of industrial engineering will help you to achieve these goals.

ASME standards

Most of the mechanical engineering products suppliers and service providers follow specific standards. These are the standards set by ASME (American Society for Mechanical Engineers). In addition to the quality of industrial products and services, these standards also assure the safety of the users.

ASTM standards

ASTM International (formerly, American Society for Testing and Materials) is another standardization organization. These standards assure the quality of the materials for various industrial products, such as adhesives, aerospace components, ceramic products and steel structures.