- Coal-fired power plant technology
- Thermal turbomachines I
- Thermal turbomachines II
- Combined cycle power plants (including simulator tutorials)
- Nuclear power plant technology
- Applied combustion technology
Thermal power plants generate more than 90% of the electricity fed into public grids worldwide, and are the backbone of the electric energy supply of modern industrial societies. This specialisation looks at the design of different thermal power plants and their components, including: coal-fired, nuclear, gas-turbine and combined-cycle power plants. Particular emphasis is placed on thermal turbomachines and the principles of applied combustion. This specialisation is complemented by lectures on rotor dynamics as well as practical exercises in the framework of thermal power plants.
At the end of your studies, you will understand the basic operation of thermal power plants, plus their performance and environmental aspects. With knowledge of the fundamentals of thermodynamics, fluid mechanics and technical mechanics, you will be able to lay out, design and calculate power plants and their major components. You will also understand the needs of future energy systems, and the increased contribution of intermittent renewable energies with respect to flexibility and alternative fuels.
- Design, construction and technical systems of low-energy buildings
- Urban planning and energy infrastructure
- Energy and indoor climate concepts for high-performance buildings
- Combined-cycle power plants (including simulator tutorial)
- Nuclear power plant technology
- Building simulation
This course enables students to understand the role of buildings and cities in tomorrow’s overall energy system. It introduces students to design concepts and innovative technologies for high levels of energy efficiency and renewable energy use in buildings. Emphasis is placed on integrated solutions that demonstrate the interaction between space concepts, construction principles, materiality, technical equipment and energy performance. In addition, aspects of urban planning are explored, in particular energy infrastructure and sustainable development of urban quarters,
Students gain a basic knowledge of architectural design principles, building construction, building materials properties and technical building systems, to better understand their interdependencies and their impact on building energy performance. Students also understand urban structures, including energy-supply concepts at various scales, as well as urban planning processes. In addition, students will be able to evaluate different design concepts and planning strategies and their impact on technical system integration, energy efficiency, and sustainability. Finally, students gain knowledge of different modelling techniques and the use of relevant software packages for simulating building energy performance and internal comfort.
- Fundamentals of combustion I
- Chemical energy storage
- Chemical fuels
- Energy from biomass
Chemical energy carriers are high quality fuels and chemicals designed for energy applications. Chemical energy carriers can be solids, liquids and gases, produced from fossil or biogenic energy resources (e.g. coal, mineral oil or wood), or from chemical substances such as CO2 and H2. They are designed to be used in highly efficient energy conversion processes for the supply of final energy in the form of heat, power or mobility. Because they typically have a high energy density, they are well suited for storage and transportation over long distances. Chemical energy carriers will therefore play a major role in all future energy scenarios.
The focus of the course is the characterisation of chemical energy carriers and the processes for their production and use.
The course provides an introduction to global reserves and production, environmental aspects, photosynthesis, and fossil-fuel formation. You will also explore the characteristic properties of raw materials and fuels, and the process of fuel upgrading, conversion and cleaning. Examples such as chemical upgrading processes in petroleum refining, non-conventional liquid fuels from fossil fuels, and biomass feedstock will be given.
Different laboratory modules focus on instrumental methods for analysing the essential properties of chemical energy carriers, and you will have the opportunity to perform measurements on the institute’s test facilities.
You will gain an in-depth understanding of the principles of production and upgrading of fuels; fuel-conversion processes, including mechanical, thermal, chemical, biological, thermo-chemical and electro-chemical; and criteria for assessing different fuels and fuel-conversion processes.
- Smart energy distribution
- Superconductivity in smart grid power applications
- Efficient energy systems and electric mobility
- Electrical power transmission and grid control
This course addresses the technologies, methods and algorithms required for establishing a modern and flexible power supply system that incorporates a high amount of decentralised power supply generated by renewables.
The European power-supply system faces a number of challenges, including: the fluctuation of power generation, especially by renewables and power consumption; voltage gradients by PV; electric vehicles in the distribution grid; and voltage gradients in the extremely high voltage grid caused by high volumes of wind power in northern Europe plus regional shortages of power generation that requires electric power transportation over long distances.
Lectures in this course provide basic knowledge about the physics of power transmission in the three-phase power system, technologies like high-voltage DC transmission (HVDC) and flexible AC transmission systems (FACTS), and the basics of primary and secondary grid control.
You will also learn about new grid equipment such as superconducting current limiters, which allow fundamentally new grid architectures or superconducting cables and power transformers. Superconducting power transformers offer new ways of grid design and operation by combing the functionalities of a transformer with extremely low losses and a current limiter.
Electric vehicles and mobility lead to new challenges such as local, peak-power demands in the distribution grid, but their storage capacity also offers new opportunities for energy storage. This can be used for a local harmonisation of the power demand of a smart home, for example. Lectures illuminate these aspects and their potential impact on the future power grid architecture.
Students also learn the basics of the new methods and algorithms that are required for an active management of the distribution grid. You will also gain tools to make a major contribution to the development of the future power supply system.
Students will learn the physical basics of power transmission through the three-phase power system. You will be able to create a basic electrical design for the major components of an HVDC transmission system, and understand the most important FACTS designs and their fields of application. You will also understand the features and functionality of the grid-control system. Finally, you will also gain understanding of strategies for operating a smart power grid, as well as superconducting power-grid equipment, the opportunities for use, and the technological challenges to bring them into operation.
- Decommissioning of nuclear facilities
- Radiation protection
- Nuclear thermal-hydraulics
- Nuclear safety
- Neutron transport theory
Nuclear power plants contribute around 14 per cent of worldwide electricity production, at competitive costs without emissions of greenhouse gases. More than 60 nuclear power plants are currently under construction, and more than 150 are planned. The courses on nuclear power will cover a wide range of technologies needed to design and operate such nuclear power plants.
The first semester starts with an introduction to the technologies of pressurised water reactors and boiling water reactors, as well as the physics of radioactive decay and nuclear fission. These courses are accompanied by courses on mathematical modelling, thermal-hydraulics, nuclear safety, and the chemistry of the nuclear fuel cycle. Together they provide a solid basis for specialised courses on nuclear technologies offered in the second semester.
The specialist courses cover reactor-core design in greater depth, including: neutron physics that are responsible for the fission chain reaction; heat removal from fuel rods by coolant flow; and assessment methods for the safety performance of nuclear power plants. Courses also cover the fast reactors and a closed nuclear fuel cycle needed to convert spent uranium into plutonium.
Complementary courses also cover decommissioning and dismantling of nuclear facilities, radiation protection, and computational fluid dynamics. A lectures on nuclear-fusion technology introduce a new and innovative domain of nuclear power technologies.
You will understand and be able to apply the basic principles of nuclear reactor design, including the key technologies of the core design and nuclear safety systems. You will also be introduced to a number of the additional technologies needed to convert nuclear power to electricity. Among these is the production and recycling of nuclear fuel, handling of radioactive material, design of nuclear power plants, and an outlook to the alternative technology of nuclear fusion. The courses are mainly application oriented, corresponding with the needs of the nuclear industry, including vendors, suppliers and utilities.
- Solar energy
- Batteries and fuel cells
- Geothermal energy
- Wind and hydro power
- Computational economics
- Energy system analysis
- Nature-inspired optimisation
- Basics of liberalised energy markets
Both disciplines covered in this specialisation depend on the use of computer-based simulation models to analyse complex energy systems. Lectures focus on optimisation problems, and how to use heuristics to solve them to optimality or approximately. They also provide an overview of the core topics in the field of energy economics at present: energy efficiency and electric mobility, energy resources and technologies, and energy markets, as well as the political framework conditions.
The courses provide students with a basic comprehension of the different informatics approaches, especially when used in energy economics. You will also obtain an overview of the current trends in the fields of energy technology and liberalised energy markets.
- Technical systems for thermal waste treatment
- Water technology
- High temperature process engineering
- Laboratory work in combustion technology
The main subjects of this specialisation is the multi-disciplinary approach to planning and management, and the process engineering aspects of public utilities for gas, water, waste treatment and disposal. The courses have components in natural sciences, advanced and appropriate technology, socio-economics, and management.
This specialisation offers courses that address the particular challenges faced by municipal utility companies and how to apply of basic principles of engineering to them. In particular, students will explore the utilisation of water or fuels, and take special courses in the preparation of drinking water, including water treatment as separation, oxidation, biodegradation, disinfection and membrane technology, as well as the transport and storage of chemical energy carriers, such as gas grid, transportation and storage of gaseous fuels.
Special courses that look at thermal waste treatment by municipalities are also offered. These include: technical systems for thermal waste treatment, such as grate furnace, rotary kiln, fluidised bed, and pyrolysis/gasification technologies; and the technology of high-temperature process engineering including high-temperature generation and heat transfer mechanisms at high temperatures.
After successful completion of this specialisation course, students have the knowledge to: operate public utilities for gas and water supply, waste treatment and disposal; provide a multi-disciplinary approach to planning, process engineering and management aspects of such utilities; integrate regional requirements, while taking into account long-range preservation of the environment.