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Advanced Thermodynamics (MCEN90019)

Graduate courseworkPoints: 12.5On Campus (Parkville)

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Year of offer2019
Subject levelGraduate coursework
Subject codeMCEN90019
Semester 2
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date


This subject is an introduction to combustion theory and applications. In the first part we discuss combustion fundamentals, including thermodynamics, chemical kinetics, conservation equations, and application of these principles to solve simple flames and reacting flows. In the second part we discuss combustion engines and the combustion phenomena in spark-ignition and compression-ignition engines.


  • Chemical thermodynamics and kinetics - flame temperatures, Gibbs free energy and equilibrium, chemical kinetics, combustion mechanisms of common fuels.
  • Governing equations - mass, momentum, species and energy conservation for idealized reactors and simplified reacting flows.
  • Flames - theoretical analyses of laminar flames, premixed flame (flame speed, quenching, flame stabilization), diffusion jet flame (flame geometry, conserved scalar, soot formation).
  • Reciprocating engines - engine cycle analysis, turbulent combustion in spark ignition and diesel engines, cylinder-pressure analysis, pollutant formation and emission control, alternative power-trains and fuels.

Intended learning outcomes


Having completed this subject the student is expected to be able to:

  1. Analyse the equilibrium and kinetics of combustion of different fuels
  2. Use computer software to solve combustion kinetics and flame structures with detailed reaction mechanisms
  3. Apply the fundamental principles of thermodynamics to numerous engineering devices
  4. Use a systems approach to simplify a complex problem.

Generic skills

On completing this subject, students should have:

  • The ability to apply knowledge of science and engineering fundamentals
  • The ability to undertake problem identification, formulation, and solution
  • An understanding of social, cultural, global, and environmental responsibilities and the need to employ principles of sustainable development
  • The ability to utilise a systems approach to complex problems and to design and operational performance
  • The capacity for creativity and innovation.

Last updated: 11 January 2019