MEEN30100 Engineering Thermodynamics II

Academic Year 2023/2024

This module performs two main functions. Firstly, it deepens and broadens the Thermodynamic foundations established in the Stage 1 module MEEN10010 Energy Engineering, in particular with respect to the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics. Second, it exploits that strengthened framework to describe and analyse common engineering components and power-generation cycles.

Throughout the module, reference is made to the importance of energy for achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Renewable energy systems (RES) are analysed from a thermodynamic perspective, and their performance and sustainability compared with traditional, fossil-based systems.

The module begins with a review of the 1st Law of Thermodynamics, and an introduction to the 2nd Law that emphasises the distinction between heat and work. These laws are then applied to the analysis of Otto, Diesel, Brayton-Joule, and Rankine cycle heat engines, representative of petrol, diesel and jet engines, and steam-powered electricity generation plant respectively. The combined-cycle gas turbine (CCGT) plant is then investigated.

The concept of exergy is then introduced, and used to derive 2nd Law efficiency metrics for components (e.g. nozzles, diffuses, compressors) and cycles. The module concludes with a brief look at the thermodynamics of gas mixtures and of combustion.

In addition to the formal lectures, students each complete two laboratory practicals, related to engine operation and refrigeration respectively. These laboratory sessions aim to deepen the student's engagement with the subject, develop their ability to work as a team, improve their engineering communication skills, and enhance their capacity to conduct experiments and to analyse and interpret data. All laboratories are carried out with reference to current School Health and Safety protocols. Students should follow these during all laboratory activities. Further information is available at and within the Brightspace resources for this module.

Students are encouraged to use one or more of the following text books to support their learning in this module:
"Thermodynamics: an engineering approach". Cengel and Boles, McGraw-Hill.
"Fundamentals of thermodynamics". Sonntag, Borgnakke and Van Wylen, Wiley.
"Modern engineering thermodynamics". Balmer, Elsevier.

Students should note that a non-standard marking system is used in this module, for all grades above C-. 50% corresponds to a grade of C- as usual; grade boundaries are then drawn at intervals of 5%, up to the A+ boundary at 90%. So 55% equates to a grade of C; 60% to a grade of C+; 65% to a grade of B-, etc.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

On successful completion of this module the student will be able to:
1. Analyse common engineering flow devices using the 1st and 2nd Laws of Thermodynamics.
2. Describe and analyse the operation, performance, and characteristics of common power-generation cycles including the Otto, Diesel, Brayton-Joule cycles, the Rankine steam cycle, and the gas turbine combined cycle.
3. Conduct relevant experiments, and analyse and interpret data.
4. Describe the basic mechanisms linking combustion to gaseous emissions, and discuss the physical and ethical implications of these emissions for local and global air quality.
5. Explain the linkages between thermal efficiency and sustainability of energy conversion cycles and devices.
6. Communicate effectively with engineers using oral and written media.

Indicative Module Content:

The content delivered in this module is shown below, and will be delivered in approximately the sequence shown:

Section 1: Introduction and Fundamentals
• Introduction, and review of 1st law of Thermodynamics
• Introduction to 2nd Law of Thermodynamics
• Reversible and irreversible processes
• Introduction to entropy

Section 2: Modelling engines
• Air-standard engine assumptions
• Real engine performance metrics
• Otto-cycle and gasoline engines
• Diesel-cycle and diesel engines
• Brayton-Joule cycle and gas turbine engines

Section 3: Multiphase fluids
• Deriving and using the Tds equations
• Rankine cycle

Section 4: 2nd Law analysis: exergy
• The gas turbine combined cycle (GTCC) - what and why
• Exergy and 2nd Law efficiency
• Flow through nozzles and throttles

Section 5: Mixtures of Ideal Gases, and Combustion
• Partial properties of gas mixtures
• Ideal combustion of hydrocarbon fuels
• Generation and control of combustion by-products

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours




Specified Learning Activities


Autonomous Student Learning


Online Learning




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
Module delivery is based around 35 lectures, and 2 group laboratory sessions 
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations
Learning Recommendations:

As the module title indicates, this module is intended to build on material covered in a previous, introductory-level, thermodynamics course. It is strongly recommended that students complete such an introductory Thermodynamics module prior to attempting MEEN30100 Thermodynamics II.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
Not applicable to this module.
Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Examination: End-of-semester, in-person assessment (RDS) 2 hour End of Trimester Exam No Other No


Lab Report: Marks based on 2 laboratory assignments Varies over the Trimester n/a Graded No


Continuous Assessment: Brightspace quiz Week 3 n/a Other No


Continuous Assessment: Brightspace quiz Week 7 n/a Other No


Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Spring No
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment
• Group/class feedback, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Students are provided with class feedback following each interim assessment. Individual feedback is also offered following each interim assessment. Feedback on Laboratory activities is provided at class level, throughout the semester.

Yunus Cengel and Michael Boles, "Thermodynamics: An Engineering Approach", McGraw-Hill (6th edition or later)
Claus Borgnakke and Richard E. Sonntag, "Fundamentals of Thermodynamics (SI version)", Wiley
Claus Borgnakke, "Borgnakke's Fundamentls of Thermodynamics, SI version", Wiley
Name Role
Dr Ali Saberi Mehr Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Assoc Professor David Timoney Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Alison Clarke Tutor
Hongshuai Liu Tutor
Mr Federico Mazzanti Tutor
Timetabling information is displayed only for guidance purposes, relates to the current Academic Year only and is subject to change.
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - Autumn: All Weeks Fri 10:00 - 10:50
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12 Mon 09:00 - 09:50
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - Autumn: All Weeks Wed 09:00 - 09:50
Laboratory Offering 1 Week(s) - 2, 10 Fri 15:00 - 16:50
Laboratory Offering 2 Week(s) - 3, 9 Fri 15:00 - 16:50
Laboratory Offering 3 Week(s) - 4, 11 Fri 15:00 - 16:50
Laboratory Offering 4 Week(s) - 5, 7 Fri 15:00 - 16:50
Laboratory Offering 5 Week(s) - 6, 8 Fri 15:00 - 16:50
Laboratory Offering 6 Week(s) - 2, 9 Mon 15:00 - 16:50
Laboratory Offering 7 Week(s) - 3, 7 Mon 15:00 - 16:50
Laboratory Offering 8 Week(s) - 4, 10 Mon 15:00 - 16:50
Laboratory Offering 9 Week(s) - 5, 11 Mon 15:00 - 16:50
Laboratory Offering 10 Week(s) - 6, 12 Mon 15:00 - 16:50