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Mechanical Engineering at Imperial College London

Imperial College London offers an undergraduate course in Mechanical Engineering. Students studying Mechanical Engineering have to spend the first two years following a core programme of modules to provide basic knowledge and skills of all mechanical engineers.

The programme comprises enhancing skills in workshop practice and conducting students' own design. Students on the Year Abroad programme spend their fourth year studying at one of the partner institutions in Germany, France, Australia, the Netherlands and the USA. Students are advised to develop the required language skills for this programme of study overseas.

Total Technology

The Total Technology route to the MEng in Mechanical Engineering provides a unique opportunity for students in order to integrate academic training, offered by Imperial. It also provides the industrial training that requires becoming a professional chartered engineer.

Students wishing to take this route ought to arrange sponsorship with a company that takes part in this programme. Generally, this programme encompasses spending a pre-university year working with the company, training with them and summer vacation placement. Students' individual module and project choices may also be guided by the industry or company sponsoring their degree.

Nuclear Engineering

Students who are following the MEng Mechanical Engineering programme may graduate with specialist MEng Mechanical with Nuclear Engineering degree it they take five modules, which lay emphasis upon studies related to nuclear engineering: Nuclear, Thermal Hydraulics, Introduction to Nuclear Engineering, Reactor Physics, Nuclear, Chemical Engineering and Nuclear Materials

These courses are taught jointly by the Department of Chemical Engineering and Chemical Technology, the Department of Mechanical Engineering and the Department of Materials.

Course Structure

The course units in first year and second year form the core of the programme and all should be completed. Some of them include hands-on laboratory exercises. The Manufacture and Design units consist of a course on workshop practice in the first year and group projects in both the first and second years.

First Year

  • Design and Manufacture
  • Computing
  • Fluid Mechanics
  • Experimental Reporting Skills
  • Mathematics
  • Materials
  • Mechatronics
  • Mechanics
  • Thermodynamics
  • Stress Analysis

Second Year

  • Design and Manufacture
  • Computing
  • Fluid Mechanics
  • Dynamics
  • Management and Business for Engineers
  • Heat Transfer
  • Mechanics
  • Mathematics
  • Stress Analysis
  • Mechatronics
  • Thermodynamics
  • Technical Presentation Skills

Third and Fourth Years

In the third year, students have various choices. They should take two course units that continue the core of the programme and work on the literature research project and group project. Optional course units provide students the opportunity to begin to specialize in a direction that fits students' interests and ideas about career or students may continue to study subjects over the entire range of mechanical engineering. The availability of these varies from year to year. Following is the typical list.

Core Courses

  • Thermodynamics and Energy
  • Machine System Dynamics

Optional Courses

  • Design, Art and Creativity
  • Computational Continuum Mechanics
  • Fundamentals of Fracture Mechanics
  • Fluid Mechanics
  • Introduction to Nuclear Energy
  • Integrated Design and Manufacture
  • Microprocessors
  • Mathematics
  • Stress Analysis
  • Statistics
  • Tribology
  • Structure, Properties and Applications of Polymers
  • Welding, Adhesives and Joining

In both third and fourth years, the course units are provided in a wide range of non-technical subjects. Students may take one or two of these in each two years. Examples are:

  • Ethical Dilemmas and Controversies in Science and Technology
  • Communicating Science
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Creative Writing
  • French
  • European History 1870-1989
  • German
  • Global History of Twentieth Century Things
  • Innovation Management
  • History of Medicine
  • Mandarin
  • Italian
  • Music Technology
  • Music and Western Civilisation
  • Philosophies of Science
  • Philosophy
  • Project Management
  • Politics
  • Spanish

For more information about this course, students are advised to visit the college website.


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