• Offered by RS Electrical, Energy and Materials Engineering
  • ANU College ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science
  • Course subject Engineering
  • Areas of interest Engineering, Renewable Energy, Sustainable Engineering
  • Academic career UGRD
  • Course convener
    • Dr Daniel MacDonald
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Co-taught Course
  • Offered in Second Semester 2020
    See Future Offerings
Energy Resources and Renewable Technologies (ENGN3516)

Providing energy for the entire planet without causing catastrophic climate change requires profound Energy Change. Major developments are occurring in the energy sector, both with energy technologies and the economic, social and policy measures that accompany them. This course focuses on renewable energy resources - the technologies that will comprise a large part of global Energy Change. It aims to help students identify the major 'big picture' questions in the area of energy resources and develop technically sound ways of quantitatively answering them.

The course commences with an overview of world fossil-fuel energy resources, the scientific evidence  for climate change, and an introduction to asking good questions - with a focus on ball-park analysis and appropriate physical units.

We next look at individual renewable energy resources in detail (solar PV, nuclear, wind, solar thermal, hydro, bio, geothermal and tidal). We examine their scientific and technical foundations, available resources, integration with the grid, and broader economic and social issues to assess their ultimate potential as well as their practical limitations. Alongside the technical assessment of energy resources, we dedicate individual lectures to calculating the levelized cost of electricity, understanding the current and future electrical grid, and examining broader social and political issues concerned with energy use. Because of the rapid pace of change in this field, the course focuses on developing students' skills in framing questions and finding answers, as well as being able to critically evaluate those answers and support them with scientific evidence.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Develop using systematic engineering methods sustainable solutions to problems related to the utilization of renewable energy.

  2. Engage in independent research and investigation in problems related to the utilization of renewable energy.

  3. Identify and critically evaluate current developments and emerging trends within the field of renewable energy technologies.

  4. Demonstrate advanced knowledge of levelised cost of electricity, the performance of renewable energy technologies and storage and the use of appropriate measurement units.

  5. Communicate effectively to non-technical audiences in oral and written form.

  6. Develop a personal, quantified, well-argued view of possible energy futures.

  7. Work effectively and proactively within teams, demonstrating autonomy, ethical conduct, expert judgement, adaptability and responsibility to achieve engineering outcomes at a high standard.

In response to COVID-19: Please note that Semester 2 Class Summary information (available under the classes tab) is as up to date as possible. Changes to Class Summaries not captured by this publication will be available to enrolled students via Wattle. 

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Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must have completed ENGN2226 or ENGN2301. Incompatible with ENGN6516.



Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2020 $4320
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2020 $5760
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Second Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
8541 27 Jul 2020 03 Aug 2020 31 Aug 2020 30 Oct 2020 In Person N/A

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