After completing this course, the student can:|
a. test by experiments and calculations a hypothesis related to optimizing work or heat transport in a practical device;
b. design and test a student-powered device and process to cool water, as part of a team, and using a systematic and scientific approach;
c. present and motivate results and design choices in a written and oral way.
The project aims at applying the material taught in Thermodynamics in a practical case. The students get an assignment that has to be completed in groups of typically 6-8 students in the short period of only 9 weeks of the module. Apart from thermodynamics also basic heat transfer, finite element modeling, and systematic design are important in this assignment. Students are introduced to the basic principles of these topics in the first 3 weeks. In the rest of the project, students are expected to guide their own learning and apply these principles to optimize the design of a device that cools water by compression-expansion cycles using two bicycle pumps.|
The project is distinctly different from ‘traditional’ lecture/tutorial based courses in two ways: (1) there is no written exam but only a report, demonstration, and interview (oral exam); (2) teachers primarily support the students’ learning with advice on how to do the necessary research (find solutions and answers to your own problems/questions) rather than relying on a teacher to spell out the final answer for you. The reason for these differences is that the project has a focus on academic skills (how to do research and design) and not just theoretical knowledge.