His researches in hydrodynamics were highly useful for marine engineering, while the reflecting and repeating circles, as improved by him, were of great service in nautical astronomy.
At a later period he was one of the leading contributors to the Encyclopaedia Britannica (seventh and eighth editions), the articles on Electricity, Hydrodynamics, Magnetism, Microscope, Optics, Stereoscope, Voltaic Electricity, &c., being from his pen.
Thus rational mechanics, based on the Newtonian Laws, viewed as mathematics is independent of its supposed application, and hydrodynamics remains a coherent and respected science though it is extremely improbable that any perfect fluid exists in the physical world.
One of the most successful labourers in the science of hydrodynamics at this period was Pierre Louis Georges Dubuat (1734-1809).
Two methods are employed in hydrodynamics, called the Eulerian and Lagrangian, although both are due originally to Leonhard Euler.