Engineering Mechanics – Important Topics and Reference Books

The Engineering Mechanics is considered one of the basic subjects for engineering students irrespective of branch as it develops the thinking and imaginative capacity of the students. In view of this, most of the university authorities either from India or Foreign have included this subject in the Engineering syllabus. Following are the important topics in Engineering Mechanics:


1. Equilibrium of concurrent forces-Method of projections and method of moments
2. Parallel forces and general case of forces in a plane
3. Centroids of composite plane figures and curves and Moment of inertia
4. Analysis of Plane trusses by method of joints
5. Friction and its applications
6. Principle of Virtual work and its applications


1. Rectilinear translation: Differential equation of rectilinear motion-D’Alembert’s principle-Momentum and impulse-Work and Energy-Impact
2. Curvilinear translation: Differential equation of curvilinear motion-D’Alembert’s principle- Work and Energy
3. Mass moment of Inertia
4. Rotation of a rigid body about a fixed axis

Where students generally do mistakes and how to avoid it?

The students generally do mistakes in drawing proper free body diagram and resolving the forces. Free body diagram is a sketch of the isolated body, which shows the external forces on the body and the reactions exerted on it by the removed elements. Hence, the students are required to concentrate and practice free body diagrams and resolving the forces.

Model papers: Previous examination papers give an idea of depth of questions, choice and type of one mark questions. Most of the one mark questions are repetitive. Hence, the students can score good marks in short answer questions.

Why students fail in this subject?

Unlike the other conventional subjects in the first year, Engineering Mechanics requires thinking and imaginative capacity of the students. Unless the concepts are clearly understood, the students can’t attempt the problem. Hence, thorough understanding of the concepts (viz., drawing proper free body diagrams and resolving the forces) are essential to pass as well as to secure good marks in this subject.

Text Books

1. Engineering mechanics by S. Timoshenko and D. H. Young – Mc Graw- Hill International edition (For concepts and symbolic problems)
2. Engineering mechanics statics and dynamics by A. K. Tayal – Umesh publication, Delhi (For numerical problems using S.I. system of units)
3. Vector mechanics for engineers statics and dynamics by Beer and Johnston, Tata Mc Graw-Hill publishing company, New Delhi
4. Engineering mechanics statics and dynamics by J. L. Meriam and L. Kraige

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