2019 Fundamentals of Thermal Engineering

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Academic unit or major
Undergraduate major in Systems and Control Engineering
Kosaka Hidenori 
Course component(s)
Day/Period(Room No.)
Mon1-2(S622)  Thr1-2(S622)  
Course number
Academic year
Offered quarter
Syllabus updated
Lecture notes updated
Language used
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Course description and aims

This course focuses on the fundamentals of thermodynamics and heat transfer. In the first half of this course, the fundamentals of thermodynamics are presented, which include the topics on thermal equilibrium concept, definitions of quantities of state, 1st and 2nd laws of thermodynamics, and gas cycles. In the latter half of this course, fundamentals of the Heat transfer are presented, which include the basics of heat conduction, convection heat transfer and radiative heat transfer.

In order to improve the thermal efficiency of thermal engines and control the thermal energy conversion systems, the phenomena in these systems should be made clear. The phenomena in the thermal systems can be explained by the concepts of thermodynamics and heat transfer. The fundamentals of thermodynamics and heat transfer will be used for the improvement of thermal efficiency of energy conversion systems and control of them. By combining lectures and exercises, the course enables students to understand and acquire the fundamentals of thermodynamics and heat transfer widely applicable to analysis of energy conversion systems.

Student learning outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:
1) Explain the concepts of energy conservation and irreversibility in the energy transfer.
2) Calculate the change in quantities of the state of ideal gas.
3) Calculate the thermal efficiencies of gas cycles.
4) Explain the concepts of heat conduction, convective heat transfer, and radiative heat transfer.
5) Calculate the heat flux in the steady 1 dimensional heat transfer.


1st law of thermodynamics, 2nd law of thermodynamics, ideal gas, gas cycles, heat conduction, convective heat transfer, radiative heat transfer

Competencies that will be developed

Intercultural skills Communication skills Specialist skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

At the beginning of each class, solutions to exercise problems that were assigned during the previous class are reviewed. Towards the end of class, students are given exercise problems related to the lecture given that day to solve. To prepare for class, students should read the course schedule section and check what topics will be covered. Required learning should be completed outside of the classroom for preparation and review purposes.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Basic concepts of thermodynamics (thermal equilibrium, system and surrounding, quantities of state) Understand the definitions of quantities of state and system
Class 2 The 1st law of thermodynamics in closed system Understand the equivalence between heat and work, energy conservation in the closed system
Class 3 The 1st law of thermodynamics in open system Understand the definition of enthalpy and energy conservation in the open system
Class 4 Ideal gas Understand the definition of ideal gas and various kinds of processes
Class 5 The 2nd law of thermodynamics (concepts of cycle and thermal efficiency) Understand the definition of cycle, Thomson principle, and Clausius principle
Class 6 The 2nd law of thermodynamics (reversible and irreversible processes, entropy) Understand the irreversibility, definition of entropy, and calculation method of entropy change of ideal gas
Class 7 Gas cycles (Otto cycle, Diesel cycle) Understand the calculation of thermal efficiency of Otto and Diesel cycles
Class 8 Gas cycles (Brayton cycle, Stirling cycle) Understand the calculation of thermal efficiency of Brayton and Stirling cycles
Class 9 Basic concepts of heat transfer Understand the classification of heat transfer
Class 10 Steady heat conduction Derivation of Fourier equation, apply to the steady heat conduction
Class 11 Unsteady heat conduction Understand the concept of numerical analysis of unsteady heat transfer
Class 12 Laminar convective heat transfer Understand the structure of boundary layer, definitions of Prandtl and Nusselt numbers
Class 13 Turbulent convective heat transfer Understand the eddy diffusivity and definitions of Stanton number
Class 14 Natural convection heat transfer Understand the structure of boundary layer in natural convection, definition of Grashof number
Class 15 Radiative heat transfer Understand the Kirchhoff law, Stefan-Boltzmann law, Planck equation


Materials will be provided if they are required.

Reference books, course materials, etc.

Reference book: JSME, JSME text series Thermodynamics, Maruzen, ISBN978-4-88898-104-0 (Japanese)
JSME, JSME text series Heat transfer, Maruzen, ISBN978-4-88898-120-0(Japanese)

Assessment criteria and methods

Students' knowledge on thermodynamics and heat transfer will be assessed by final exam.

Related courses

  • LAS.C107 : Basic Chemical Thermodynamics
  • SCE.M301 : Continuum Mechanics
  • SCE.M304 : Computational Mechanics

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

Students are expected to have successfully completed Basic Chemical Thermodynamics or have equivalent knowledge.

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