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Graduate courses

Departments' graduate courses for PhD-students.


Syllabus for

Academic year
MTF042 - Thermodynamics and energy technology  
Termodynamik med energiteknik
Syllabus adopted 2020-04-01 by Head of Programme (or corresponding)
Owner: TKMAS
7,5 Credits
Grading: TH - Pass with distinction (5), Pass with credit (4), Pass (3), Fail
Education cycle: First-cycle
Major subject: Energy and Environmental Systems and Technology, Mechanical Engineering

Teaching language: Swedish
Application code: 55130
Open for exchange students: No
Only students with the course round in the programme plan

Module   Credit distribution   Examination dates
Sp1 Sp2 Sp3 Sp4 Summer course No Sp
0111 Examination 5,0 c Grading: TH   5,0 c   20 Mar 2021 am J,  09 Jun 2021 am J,  27 Aug 2021 am J
0211 Design exercise + laboratory 2,5 c Grading: UG   2,5 c    

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Fredrik Normann

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Environment 1,5 hec


General entry requirements for bachelor's level (first cycle)
Applicants enrolled in a programme at Chalmers where the course is included in the study programme are exempted from fulfilling the requirements above.

Specific entry requirements

The same as for the programme that owns the course.
Applicants enrolled in a programme at Chalmers where the course is included in the study programme are exempted from fulfilling the requirements above.

Course specific prerequisites

Mathematics and mechanics corresponding to the first two years of the mechanical engineering programme.


The course aim is that students should learn basic thermodynamics and energy technological processes such as combustion engine, gas turbine and steam cycle. This includes gases and liquids properties, the concepts of energy and entropy, and the laws of how these variables may change in different processes. Furthermore, the course aims to understand the context, opportunities and constraints that exist to meet future energy demand in a sustainable manner. Within the above areas is also intended course to give visibility to knowledge relevant to mechanical engineering profession.

Learning outcomes (after completion of the course the student should be able to)

- explain basic concepts in engineering thermodynamics, such as energy, heat and work
- explain basic concepts concerning the nature and states of fluids
- apply the first principle of thermodynamics in closed and open systems
- explain the meaning of the second principle of thermodynamics and the limitations of various conversion processes
- use the thermodynamic relations, graphs and tables to calculate the various state entities.
- describe in detail what a thermodynamic cycle and the difference between reversible and non-reversible processes
- explain how the most common thermodynamic machines work, such as Otto, Diesel, Clausius-Rankine and Brayton
- explain the principles of steam cycle process (Clausius-Rankine), gas turbine process (Brayton) and the internal combustion engine (Otto and Diesel) and solve problems related to these processes and principles applied to increase efficiency
- describe constraints and ethical aspects of the use of various energy technologies and fuels as well as technologies to minimize environmental effects - set up basic combustion and gasification reactions and be able to solve simple combustion problem
- explain the overall technical capabilities of thermal, nuclear, wind, hydro and solar power
- write a report


The course builds on the fundamental principles on engineering thermodynamics and principles of energy conversion: states and processes, first and second principle of thermodynamics, entropy, Carnot cycle, heat machines (Otto, Diesel, Brayton, Clausius-Rankine). Knowledge of thermodynamics is then applied to energy processes. The effectiveness of various processes are discussed along with the loss and waste resulting from energy conversion.

The principles of the internal combustion engine, heating, combined heat and power stations are treated specially, first from a thermodynamic point of view and then by the application. It also discusses combustion and gasification with special focus on fuel characteristics and combustion theory, as well as losses and environmental impact of incineration and gasification. Subsequent parts of the course deals with the importance of renewable energy sources (biofuels, wind, solar), fossil fuels with carbon capture and nuclear power for an energy system with restrictions on carbon emissions. The principles on thermodynamics and energy technologies practiced in the exercises, and through a comprehensive design exercise of a real power plant and a laboratory experiment on a heat pump.


The course is built around:
- Lectures
- Exercises
- A design task
- A laboratory experiment - A study visit


- Ekroth & Granryd - Tillämpad termodynamik (2006 edition)
- Formel- och tabellsamling Termodynamik med Energiteknik
- Kurskompendium i energiteknik 
- Räkneövningshäfte MTF042

Examination including compulsory elements

- written exam with a grading scale of TH (5.0 credits)
- design exercise and laboratory work with grading scale UG (2.5 credits)

Page manager Published: Thu 04 Feb 2021.