Unit code R/615/1521
Unit level 5
The supply, processing and usage of electrical energy is a leading reoccupation around the world today, with significant technical, economic, environmental and societal implications. Engineers have to engage seriously with this issue and need to be aware of the real and practical impact of their decisions.
The aim of this unit is to develop students’ understanding of electrical power systems and power distribution, giving consideration to the advantages and disadvantages of alternative power sources.
Students will learn about the construction and characteristics of power transmission and distribution systems, including the interconnections of systems and their necessary protection. Students will also consider the economics of components, power systems and alternative energy sources, in line with emerging developments within the energy sector.
On successful completion of this unit students will be able to explain the demands, sources and construction of electrical power generation and distribution systems, review the interconnections of power systems and their necessary protection, identify the requirement for engineering activity and describe new and emerging methods to optimise energy usage.
By the end of this unit students will be able to:
- Examine the demands, sources and construction of electrical power generation and distribution systems.
- Explore the interconnections of power systems and their protection to explain the critical processes and the effects of failure and the importance of electrical safety.
- Evaluate the effectiveness of forms of engineering activity to promote sustainable development, with consideration of the economics of components, power systems and alternative energy sources.
- Discuss new and emerging methods to optimise energy usage, conversion and storage techniques.
- LO1 Examine the demands, sources and construction of electrical power
generation and distribution systems
Demands of a power generation and transmission system:
Total power demands of a defined country over a period of a working week, identifying average, minimum and maximum demands
Overall annual energy consumption of domestic, industrial, transport and other systems, identifying and quantifying energy losses
Extent of delivered energy that is in the form of electrical energy
Comparison between the demands of a G20 industrial economy with that of a Third World economy; analysis of the trends of energy supply and demand data to predict future energy requirements and budgets
Identification of the contribution to the energy supplied by each of the significant primary sources of energy of a defined country. Influence of long-term governmental policy on managing the energy budget.
- LO2 Explore the interconnections of power systems and their protection to explain the critical processes and the effects of failure and the importance of electrical safety
Construction of power generation and transmission systems:
Comparisons between the distribution of power using DC and single-phase and polyphase AC transmission systems, amplitude and phase of voltages and currents in three-phase systems with resistive and complex loads Power factor and power measurement techniques of AC systems, including identification of a range of loads and their respective power factors, consequences of loads with poor power factor and the advantages of applying power factor corrections
Calculation of power factor correction components
Recognition of the effects of perturbations and harmonics within AC systems and describing methods to measure and reduce harmonics
The need to protect the power distribution network from the effects of overload or damage, and identification of the requirements of a robust protection system Evaluation of the impedance of an AC transmission line, its power losses and its effect on the power delivered to a load.
Review safety procedures associated with power networks and techniques for the safe measurement of system parameters
Analysis of a power network with multiple generators, transmission lines and loads using power systems simulation software
- LO3 Evaluate the effectiveness of forms of engineering activity to promote sustainable development, with consideration of the economics of components, power systems and alternative energy sources
Sources of electrical energy:
Efficiency, costs, security and environmental implications of energy production using coal, oil and natural gas
Definition of ‘renewable’ in relation to sources of energy
Evaluation of the efficiency, costs, security and environmental implications of energy production using renewable sources of mechanical kinetic energy,
including wave, tidal, large- and small-scale hydro and wind
Evaluate the efficiency, costs, security and environmental implications of energy production using solar heating, solar photovoltaics, biomass, fuel cells and geothermal techniques. Current state of research into nuclear, fusion and fission energy and other novel forms of energy
- LO4 Discuss new and emerging methods to optimise energy usage, conversion and storage techniques
Techniques for optimising electrical energy generation:
Techniques for optimising the generation of electricity in power stations and small-scale generators by using varied and distributed generation systems and managing the generation of power
Techniques for optimising energy usage and conversion:
Evaluating technologies and techniques for improving the efficiency or reducing the energy consumption of equipment in common use, including lighting, heating, transport and industrial processes
Energy storage techniques:
The need for energy storage techniques as part of an energy management programme, characteristics of short-term and long-term energy storage techniques and their connection to the power grid, including, hydro, battery, super capacitor, flywheel and thermal
Emerging battery technologies and battery management techniques