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Chemical Engineering - Course Outline

Part First 'A'

Year First

Students need to spend first year studying either Natural Sciences or Engineering. Approximately, half choose the Natural Sciences route and half choose the Engineering route. Both of the routes provide relatively good preparation for becoming a chemical engineer.

Part First 'B'

Year Second

In the second year, the fundamental topics are introduced such as transport processes, fluid mechanics, process operations and thermodynamics (biotechnology, reactors and separation systems). It also consists of a paper on engineering mathematics and a brief paper on economics. Students need to follow a laboratory paper on the topic of fluid mechanics. They have to undertake regular evaluated project work at the end of the year. Students required performing the mechanical design of an item of process equipment like heat exchanger. Based upon students' choice of first-year subject, there are extra lectures and practical work on either engineering or chemistry.

Part Second 'A'

Year Third

Students who have completed three years successfully will be awarded with the BA degree. It incorporates the reminder of core chemical engineering and is grounding for professional practice. The topics such as thermodynamics and fluid mechanics are covered properly. This year includes process operations topics such as advanced separations and bioprocessing and heterogeneous. Students are taught new topics in papers on materials, corrosion, heat integration, process dynamics and control, safety, environment and statistics. Students carry out further evaluated project and laboratory work throughout the year.

After completing the exams in the third year, a design project is undertaken that lasts five weeks of full-time work. The project includes the process design of a plant making a particular product or chemical. The project is designed in the group of five or six people. Therefore, students need to work in a team. Students utilize their knowledge to perform the design. For example, students apply techniques such as energy integration and mass balance to devise a process flow sheet. Students design the chemical reactors, heaters, separation systems and stipulate the control system for the plant. Lastly, students perform an economic evaluation of the proposed plant and consider the environmental and safety aspects. Some students spend part of the summer vacation between the both third and forth years on an industrial placement.

Part Second 'B'

Year Forth

Approximately all students stay on for the forth year of the course that leads to MEng degree. The course aims at developing a deeper understanding of the discipline and to introduce a series of specialist topics. Taking a compulsory paper on sustainability, students choose six further advanced topics. These optional papers may change every year and replicate the research interests of academic staff. Presently, papers have included:

  • Catalysis
  • Optimization
  • Colloid science
  • Biosensors
  • Modern metrology
  • Particle technology
  • Electrochemical engineering
  • Rheology and processing
  • Biopharmaceuticals
  • Fluid mechanics and the environment

Students also choose two broadening material papers. Presently offered are:

  • Product design
  • Entrepreneurship
  • A foreign language
  • Computational fluid dynamics

The fourth year students have to undertake an original research project. This may involve computational, experimental and theoretical work. Some of the projects support ongoing research activities within the department whilst others are blue sky investigations leading to new research programmes. Some of the projects are sponsored by interested companies that may lead to students becoming authors of publications in scientific literature.

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