From the refrigerators that we use in our homes to the colossal power stations that

generate the electricity we use and provide power to industry, the significance that

thermodynamics plays in the 21st century cannot be underestimated.

The aim of this unit is to build on the techniques explored in Unit 13: Fundamentals

of Thermodynamics and Heat Engines, to develop further students’ skills in applied

thermodynamics by investigating the relationships between theory and practice.

Among the topics included in this unit are: heat pumps and refrigeration,

performance of air compressors, steam power plant and gas turbines.

On successful completion of this unit students will be able to determine the

performance and operation of heat pumps and refrigeration systems, review the

applications and efficiency of industrial compressors, use charts and/or tables to

determine steam plant parameters and characteristics, describe the operation of

gas turbines and assess their efficiency.

The ability of successful companies to meet the growing demand of customers is

heavily influenced by the development of advanced manufacturing technologies.

Customers expect high complexity products, on demand, and with a growing

element of customisation. In adopting advanced manufacturing technologies,

successful companies will ensure faster time to market of new products, improve

products and processes, use new, sustainable, materials, and customise to

customer requirements. Manufacturing systems engineering underpins this

development.

In order to meet changing customer expectations and gain competitive advantage,

focus needs to be applied to developing smart factories and advanced

manufacturing technologies. Manufacturing organisations will seek integration

between manufacturing technology, high performance computing, the internet, and

the product at all stages of its life cycle.

Industry 4.0 is the term that has been adopted to describe the ‘fourth’ industrial

revolution currently underway, at present, in the manufacturing and commercial

sectors of our society. It is a revolution based on the integration of cyber-physical

systems with the Internet of Things and services. For the manufacturing sector, this

integration has been enabled by successfully combining high performance

computing, the internet and the development of advanced manufacturing

technologies. Industry 4.0 is changing the way the world’s most successful

companies produce the products that their global customers demand.

On successful completion of this unit students will be able to analyse and evaluate

the potential of using advanced manufacturing technologies to improve the

competitive advantage of the organisations adopting them. The student will develop

knowledge and understanding of advanced manufacturing technologies,

digitalisation and a range of advanced manufacturing technologies. They will also

develop their own research activities into the latest developments.