Module summary

Module code: MECH1061
Level: 5
Credits: 15
School: Engineering and Science
Department: Engineering
Module Coordinator(s): Samueal Mengistu



The aim of this Module is to equip students with the knowledge required to work as process engineers e.g. in energy or cooling related industries. Relevant case studies are introduced in the lecture to enhance student learning. The Module is designed to provide study links between the theories discussed in lectures and tutorial/ practical exercises and lab classes. This Module will equip students with the ability to analyse complex engineering systems and simplify the system under investigations by applying relevant assumptions. This Module will also provide insights into the latest technology developments in the field of power and process engineering. Students have to provide evidence of their understanding of the thermodynamic subject by engaging in technical discussions and presentations on individual and group level. They also have to show their ability to apply thermodynamic fundamentals to solve open ended problems/ questions.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this Module a student will be able to:
1 Explain theories and thermodynamic concepts in an applied engineering context
2 Analyse practical/real systems and apply thermodynamic laws appropriately
3 Demonstrate adequate understanding of the subject to be able to approach and seek the solution to unfamiliar problems and reflect on the outcomes of experimental/practical work and formulate appropriate conclusions
4 Evaluate thermodynamic concepts and use diagrams and steam tables/ charts to find solutions for thermodynamic based engineering problems and open ended questions (challenges)

Indicative content

Students will be introduces to a number of different case studies e.g. hydroelectric power plants, co-fired power stations and CHP plants. The content of the lecture/ tutorial/ practical could include the following:

• bio vs. fossil fuels

Thermodynamic concepts:
• First Law of thermodynamics: First law of thermodynamics, systems, open and closed systems, the steady flow energy equation, Applications of the non-flow and steady flow energy equations to evaluate heat and work interactions in e.g. heaters, compressors and fans, turbines and throttling valves
• Second Law of thermodynamics: Reversible and Irreversible process, Carnot cycle, thermodynamic heat engines, refrigerators and heat pumps. Examine Carnot Cycle, determination of thermal efficiency for heat engine, refrigerator and heat pumps
• Properties of pure substances: Introduce the concept of a pure substance, use of property tables for determining thermodynamic properties, illustrate the P-v, T-s and P-T property diagram and P-v-T surfaces of pure substances, the ideal-gas equation of state

Cycles for open and closed systems:
• Power cycle
• Refrigeration cycle
• Otto and Diesel cycle

Heat transfer:
• Heat exchanger
• Conduction
• Convection

Teaching and learning activity

The Module will be delivered through formal lectures, tutorial classes, laboratory/ practical and self-study work. Fundamental concepts will be introduced based on industrial related problem based challenges (some examples are listed below):
• Discuss Advantages and challenges using bio-fuels in traditional steam power plants (introduction of the concept of: heat, entropy, Rankine cycle, open systems)
• Explore the concept of CHP running on liquid fuels e.g. in internal combustions engines (introduce the concept of closed systems, Otto, Diesel, Bryton cycle, Ideal gas)
• Design a heat exchanger using relevant equations (explain the concept of heat transfer and understand the concept of entropy)

The thermodynamic theories are enhanced with lecture material supporting the understanding of the engineering practical aspects. Tutorials will provide an opportunity for the students to demonstrate their new skills and knowledge through guided/ self-study tutorial examples and problem sheets. Complementary practical learning exercises will further aid the understanding of the subject matter in addition to developing essential practical skills. A group or individual case study will be set to enhance the students’ ability to solve open ended problems and demonstrate their ability to discuss topic relevant material.


Students are required to pass all components in order to pass the module.

Practical - 30%
LO - 1-4.
Pass mark - 40%
1500 words.
Coursework includes: open ended challenge and technical discussion.

Exam - 70%
LO - 1-4.
Pass mark - 40%
2 hours.
Unseen closed book examination.

Nature of FORMATIVE assessment supporting student learning:
Observations, questioning, discussions, constructive quizzes and practice Exam papers.