Aerospace & Aerothermal Engineering - Teaching

Aerospace and Aerothermal Engineering is an interdisciplinary blend of subjects ranging from fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, structures, instrumentation, control, electronics and design to manufacturing. In essence, Aerospace Engineering is concerned with flight and Aerothermal Engineering with the associated propulsion systems.

In the past, development in these fields has been driven by technological issues. In the future, environmental concerns, minimising noise and pollution, and relentless pressure on design and manufacturing turnaround time will force novel solutions and paradigm shifts.

A good understanding of fluid mechanics is essential in both fields. A secure grasp of the fundamentals equips students with the ability and confidence to innovate and develop novel solutions to familiar problems and to understand and maybe manage wholly new issues.

Third Year

The necessary teaching is introduced as a series of core modules, which should be combined with an appropriate selection of companion modules, as described later.

The core modules are:

Number and title of module
3A1   Fluid mechanics I (double module)
3A3   Fluid mechanics II (double module)
3A5   Thermodynamics and power generation
3A6   Heat and mass transfer

A double module (3A1) on fluid mechanics introduces the dynamics of incompressible fluid flow and is an essential foundation course. High speed flows demand an understanding of compressibility effects and these are discussed in a further double module (3A3). 3A5 focuses on the applications of thermodynamics to power generation with emphasis on gas and steam turbine plant, and fuel cells. 3A6 addresses the important topics of heat transfer and mass transfer, with applications.

Students intending to qualify in this Engineering Area must include both 3A1 and 3A3, plus two third year core or companion modules (see below). Many will take all 4 core modules.

Companion modules

The interdisciplinary nature of the subject is reflected in the diversity of the recommended companion modules (see tables below) drawn from across the spectrum of the department's teaching, covering a range from electronics and signal processing to structural materials and design. This diversity increases in the fourth year.

Number and title of module
3B1   Radio frequency electronics
3B2   Integrated digital electronics
3C1   Materials processing and design
3C5   Dynamics
3C6   Vibration
3C7   Mechanics of solids
3C9   Fracture mechanics of materials and structures
3D3   Structural materials and design
3D4   Structural analysis and stability
3D7   Finite element methods
3F1   Signals and systems
3F2   Systems and control
3M1   Mathematical methods

Area activity: Wind tunnel tests or Performance and characteristics of gas engines or Design and performance of a portable motor-generator set

Fourth Year

Students intending to qualify in this Engineering Area in the fourth year must include one of the following combinations in their selection of modules:

Either four fourth year core modules,

or three fourth year core modules + two fourth year companion modules (see below)

The core modules are:

Number and title of module
4A2 Computational fluid dynamics
4A3   Turbomachinery I
4A4   Aircraft stability and control
4A7   Aerodynamics
4A9   Molecular thermodynamics
4A10   Flow instability
4A11   Turbomachinery II
4A12   Turbulence and vortex dynamics
4A15   Aeroacoustics

Fourth year companion modules for Aerospace and Aerothermal engineering:

Number and title of module
4B13   Electronic sensors and instrumentation
4C2   Designing with composites
4C4   Design methods
4C5   Design case studies
4C6   Advanced linear vibration
4C7   Random and non-linear vibrations
4C9   Continuum mechanics
4C15   MEMS: design
4F1   Control system design
4F2   Robust and non-linear systems and control
4F3   Optimal and predictive control