Victor Kaplan Department of Fluid Engineering

Viktor Kaplan Department of Fluid Engineering has more than a century of tradition at the Brno University of Technology. The department deals with the design and construction of hydraulic machines and equipment, the design of water works, the dynamics of hydraulic machines and equipment and the study of fluid flow. The priority of the Department of Fluid Engineering is to prepare experts who will be prepared to solve practical problems associated with the design, construction and development of equipment related to fluid flow. Another goal is to maintain and develop cooperation with industry. We are open for cooperation in research and solving specific problems from practice in the form of economic contracts, or as co-researchers of various projects and grants.

Possibilities and forms of study

The department provides education at the Bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctoral level in the field of theory, construction and design. The department also has a laboratory, which is equipped with teaching aids and state-of-the-art measuring technology. The control of measurement and processing of results is provided by appropriate computer technology.

The Department of Fluid Engineering provides education in the field of fluid flow in the following forms:

  • Bachelor’s degree programme: the department does not provide a separate bachelor’s programme. However, it contributes to education in Bachelor’s degree programs by providing the courses Hydromechanics (5HY) and Hydraulic Machines (FHY). Both courses are also offered in English for ERASMUS students.
  • Master’s degree programme: the department provides education in the specialisation of Fluid Engineering.
  • Doctoral study programme: graduates of master’s studies can continue with Doctoral studies. The doctoral study aims to acquire in-depth theoretical knowledge and prepare for scientific work in the field. Students will have the opportunity to participate in research activities in a relaxed and helpful team of the Department of Fluid Engineering. The study may be in full-time and part-time form.

Science and research activities

Victor Kaplan Department of Fluid Engineering is significantly involved in solving national and international grant projects. It works closely not only with manufacturing companies but also with research institutes and universities at home and abroad.

  • The department has state-of-the-art computer technology and software based on FLUENT and FLOW-MASTER.
  • It also has a commercial license for the FLUENT program.
  • The department also develops its software for solving various problems in the field of hydraulic designs of hydraulic machines and equipment or for solving non-stationary fluid flow in piping systems and hydraulic machines.
  • Viktor Kaplan Department of Fluid Engineering also has a Heavy Hydraulic Laboratory at its disposal.
  • More information on research and development results can be found here.

Briefly about the history of the department

Viktor Kaplan Department of Fluid Engineering has more than a century of tradition at the Brno University of Technology. In 1899, emperor Francis Joseph I signed a decree establishing the c.k. The Czech Technical University of František Josef in Brno. In 1900, the Department of Mechanical Engineering was established. The beginnings of the current Department of Fluid Engineering date back to the time when in 1901 prof. Ing. Leopold Grimm (1862-1939) was called to the Czech Technical School in Brno. He promoted and supported modern ways of using waterpower both in mills and in large power plants. He collaborated with the plant in Blansko, for which he designed the impellers of water machines. At the time, he had a decisive influence on the construction of our water works. He supported the realisation of Kaplan’s ideas and recommended testing the Kaplan turbine. Prof. Ing. Dr Victor Kaplan (1876-1934) studied mechanical engineering at the Vienna University of Technology. Prof. Alfred Musil, who worked at the German Technical University in Brno, offered Ing. Kaplan a position as a designer at the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Kinematics. Here, too, Kaplan began, among other things, work on his invention of a water turbine with rotating blades of a guide and impeller (this turbine is suitable for low gradients and high flows), which he patented in 1913. The first Kaplan turbine was manufactured in 1914 by Storek and the First Czech-Moravian Machine Factory in Prague. The production of this turbine was carried out thanks to the support of Czech experts and Czech companies.

Professor Grimm was replaced in 1933 in Brno by prof. Ing. Jan Kieswetter, a highly educated designer and technician, owner of 65 patents. Prof. Kieswetter maintained contact with the most excellent experts in his field, such as prof. Barn in Zurich or prof. Thoma in Munich. In the spirit of prof. Grimm and prof. Kaplan divided the lectures from the essential subjects into a basic and an in-depth part, where he focused on current problems of a part of machines and especially water paddle machines. He thus maintained the current high level of education in the field, which was comparable to the world level. In 1947, a new course "Indirect Regulation" was introduced. Prof. habilitated for this subject. Ing. Dr M. Nechleba - at that time the head of the theoretical department and testing room for water turbines in the national company ČKD Blansko. In 1951, by order of the President of the Republic, the Military Technical Academy in Brno was established - the basis of this school was the material equipment, buildings and the teaching staff of the Brno University of Technology. Many academic staff and teachers in the field of water machines moved to SVŠT in Bratislava (Technical University of Mechanical Engineering).

In 1956 (July 24), a Faculty of Energy with a mechanical and electrical engineering department was established by a government resolution. The name of the school was changed to the Brno University of Technology. Two years later, the institute of water machines called the Department of Water Machines was restored. Ing. Mirko Mityska started the construction of the new department after returning from SVŠT in Bratislava. The first head of the Department of Water Machines in 1959 was appointed prof. Ing. Dr Miroslav Nechleba. At this time, a small laboratory of hydromechanics and pumps was also built under the gym at Obránců míru street. A more extensive testing laboratory was built in Brno Kníničky. Here it was possible to test models up to a diameter of 400 mm. In 1961, education in the field of instrumentation, control and automation technology was introduced at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering. In the period 1961-1963, Professor Nechleba headed both departments. In 1964, the two departments were merged into one called the Department of Water Machines and Automation.