Faculty of Engineering

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2014 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Engineering
Organisational UnitDepartment of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
OfferedClayton First semester 2014 (Day)
Malaysia First semester 2014 (Day)
Clayton Second semester 2014 (Day)
Malaysia Second semester 2014 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Daniel Mitchell (Clayton); Dr Harun Ismail (Malaysia)


This unit introduces concepts of heat, work, energy, temperature and pressure. The properties of pure substances, steam tables and phase diagrams and their use in thermodynamics problems, First and Second Laws of Thermodynamics and their use in steady and unsteady state problems, Carnot cycle, Gas power cycles, vapour and combined power cycles are introduced. Use of T-s diagrams for power cycle analysis, P-h diagrams in refrigeration cycle analysis and simple combustion processes are covered. Renewable energy such as solar, hydro, wind and biomass, and their use in heating and electricity generation and the environmental benefits of renewable energy conclude study in this unit.


  1. Understand the basic concepts of heat, work, temperature, energy, enthalpy, entropy

  1. Understand the concepts of states and properties of a substance, and how to determine the phase of a substance (solid, liquid, gas) from its properties

  1. Understand the formulation of the First and Second Laws of Thermodynamics

  1. Understand the Carnot cycle as a limiting cycle and its use in defining a temperature scale

  1. Develop skills in applying the First and Second Laws of Thermodynamics to steady and unsteady state problems for open and closed systems

  1. Understand how to calculate changes in internal energy, enthalpy, and entropy from heat and work interactions

  1. Be able to analyse gas power cycles as an example of heat engines: general air cycles (Brayton cycle, Otto cycle, and diesel cycle)

  1. Be able to analyse vapour power cycles as an example of heat engines: Rankine cycle

  1. Develop skills in analysing refrigeration and heat pump cycles and be able to calculate the performance of these cycles

  1. Develop skills in the use of P-v, T-s, and P-h diagrams in solving problems in heat engine and heat pump cycles

  1. Develop skills in the experimental measurement of Thermodynamic quantities and the use of the First and Second Laws of Thermodynamics to analyse experimental systems

  1. Obtain practice in writing a technical report.


Examination (3 hours): 70%
Laboratory: 15%
Assignments and Tests: 15%

Chief examiner(s)

Workload requirements

3 hours lectures, 3 hours practical classes or laboratories and 6 hours of private study per week.