MECH ENG 7075 - Sustainable Thermal Technologies

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2014

This course gives an introduction and in depth overview of the working principles, basic theory and current development of typical sustainable thermal energy systems and technologies; eg. solar water heaters, solar thermal powered cooling, geothermal technologies, heat storage, waste heat recovery, cogeneration, hydrogen technologies and fuel pinch technique etc broader issues, eg. energy efficiencies and costings, nuclear is a future (or not), and climate change, are discussed in the course as well.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code MECH ENG 7075
    Course Sustainable Thermal Technologies
    Coordinating Unit School of Mechanical Engineering
    Term Semester 1
    Level Postgraduate Coursework
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 4 hours per week plus 2 practicals
    Assumed Knowledge MECH ENG 2021
    Course Description This course gives an introduction and in depth overview of the working principles, basic theory and current development of typical sustainable thermal energy systems and technologies; eg. solar water heaters, solar thermal powered cooling, geothermal technologies, heat storage, waste heat recovery, cogeneration, hydrogen technologies and fuel pinch technique etc broader issues, eg. energy efficiencies and costings, nuclear is a future (or not), and climate change, are discussed in the course as well.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Dr Eric Hu

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes

    On completion of the course, students should:

    1 To provide an overview of the present usage and development of various solar, geothermal, and relevant thermal technologies and their future prospects.
    2 To understand the basic principles and process of each of technologies.
    3 To perform calculations to location the sun ‘s position in the sky at any particular time of the day.
    4 To perform simple efficiency calculations of some typical thermal systems
    5 To perform a simple economic and environmental assessment of the sustainable thermal technologies.
    6 To enable team investigations on the feasibility of renewable energy design systems that meet specific energy demands and minimal environmental impact requirements.
    7 To develop the ability to analyse and compare thermal energy systems and choose the most suitable for given conditions.
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Knowledge and understanding of the content and techniques of a chosen discipline at advanced levels that are internationally recognised. 1-7
    The ability to locate, analyse, evaluate and synthesise information from a wide variety of sources in a planned and timely manner. 1-7
    An ability to apply effective, creative and innovative solutions, both independently and cooperatively, to current and future problems. 1-7
    Skills of a high order in interpersonal understanding, teamwork and communication. 1-7
    A proficiency in the appropriate use of contemporary technologies. 1-7
    A commitment to continuous learning and the capacity to maintain intellectual curiosity throughout life. 1-7
    A commitment to the highest standards of professional endeavour and the ability to take a leadership role in the community. 1-7
    An awareness of ethical, social and cultural issues within a global context and their importance in the exercise of professional skills and responsibilities. 1-7
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    Course notes – Lecture notes which is to be available on MyUni course web page.
    Recommended Resources

    1. Energy Conversion. Yogi Goswami and Frank Kreith, CRC Press, 2008 (ISBN 1-42004-431-1)

    2. Handbook of Energy and renewable Energy. Frank Kreith and Yogi Goswami, CRC Press, 2007 (ISBN 0-8493-1730-4)

    3. Treatise on Solar Energy, Volume : Fundamentals of solar Energy, H.P Garg, 1982, ISBN 0471 10180X, 1982

    The Barr Smith Library has many textbooks on renewable energy. Students are encouraged to consult these books to enrich their knowledge.

  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    Lectures supported by problem-solving tutorials developing material covered in lectures

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    The required time commitment is 32 hours attendance at lectures, 16 hours tutorials, 6 hours practicals, 48 hours of revising course material and 50 hours completing assignments, reports and preparing for exam.

    Learning Activities Summary

    Lecture 1: Introduction:

    • Energy and Energy conservation;
    • World energy consumption and resource
    • Energy conversion technologies

    Lecture 2 &3: Position of the sun in the sky:

    • Solar radiation available
    • Solar time
    • Determine the solar position
    • Examples

    Lecture 4: Solar water heaters:

    • Types
    • Systems: active and passive
    • Efficiencies and losses

    Lectures 5 & 6: Solar (thermal powered) cooling:

    • absorption systems
    • Adsorption systems
    • COP calculations

    Lecture 7: Other types of solar collectors eg. solar pond and solar air collector etc.

    Lectures 8 & 9: Solar thermal power generation:

    • Steam power cycles
    • Concentrating solar thermal power
    • Solar Aided Power Generation

    Lectures 10 & 11: Geothermal energy

    • geo-thermal resources in Australia
    • steam turbine Technologies
    • Binary Power plant technologies
    • “Hot-rocks” technology

    Lectures 12 :Heat/Energy storage:

    • overview of storage technologies
    • Sensible heat storage
    • Latent and thermo-chemical storage

    Lectures 13 :“Waste” heat recovery:

    • waste heat in power station and recovery
    • Heat exchangers and heat pipe
    • Practical applications: sorption chillers, desalination etc.

    Lectures 14 : Cogeneration:

    • Basic Cogeneration systems
    • Technical and regulatory issues
    • Examples:Co-generation and tri-generation of power station Small co-gen system in building

    Lectures 15 : (Thermal) Energy Efficient Technologies:

    • Heat pump principle
    • Solar assisted heat pump for space and water heating

    Lectures 16 : Fuel cells:

    • principle
    • six major types of fuel cells

    Lectures 17 Hydrogen Energy technologies

    • H2 production
    • H2 storage and transport
    • H2 Conversion technologies

    Lectures 18 Nuclear:

    • current and future technologies (ie. generation IV)
    • nuclear fuel cycle and waste
    • Nuclear power economic
    • Australian aspect

    Lectures 19 &20 Energy efficiency:

    • Thermal energy management in industry
    • Process energy efficiency: Pinch Technology—Theory and Practice

    Lectures 21 & 22 Costing of energy systems:

    • Economic method
    • Environment impact and Costs of Energy

    Lectures 23 & 24: Global warming and Emission trading:

    • The role CO2 plays
    • CO2 credits vs. Energy Credits
    Specific Course Requirements
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary

    All assessment tasks are summative. All assignments are due by 5pm on the due date. Details of each task are tabulated below.

    Assessment Task Task Type Due Weighting % Learning Outcome
    Assignment 1 Solar Thermal

    See MyUni

    25 1-4
    Assignment 2 Pinch technology See MyUni 25 1-4
    Assignment 3 An essay on sustainable thermal technologies See MyUni 30 1-4
    Solar radiation practical Practical report See MyUni 10 1-4
    Solar shading Practical report See MyUni 10 1-4
    Assessment Related Requirements
    Assessment Detail
    See above assessment summary
    Students will be contacted directly with clear instructions and all information will be posted on MyUni.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

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    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

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