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The University of Southampton

ELEC6221 Power Generation: Technology and Impact on Society

Module Overview

The module content allows students to 1) Appreciate the role of electric power in the modern world – Size of the industry 2) Understand current power demands and projected increase – Geographic location – Seasonal and daily variations 3) Learn different generation technologies – Physical and engineering aspects – Economy and cost – Impact on environment – Political vector

Aims and Objectives

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • To understand concepts about the production of electric power through different technologies
  • To become familiar with economical, ecological, political and management aspects of power generation
  • To appreciate environmental impact of power generation
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • To make a comprehensive comparison of possible solutions of power generation in particular circumstances
  • To predict efficiencies of gas turbine and steam plants
  • To suggest optimal emission control measures for gas turbine and coal-fired plants
  • To design cost-effective solutions based on combine heat and power (CHP) technology


Power Generation – Technologies (fossil fuel, nuclear, renewables, ...) – Energy in the society – Resources availability – Technological costs – Impact on the environment – Political independence Energy from the environment – Designs and performance Heat engines – Technologies (turbines, boilers, condensers, pumps, etc) – Thermodynamic efficiency – Engineering design – Pollution – Capital costs and fuel prices

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Lectures and example classes every week. Group project on development of power generation strategy . Visit to Marchwood Power station.

Follow-up work12
Preparation for scheduled sessions12
Completion of assessment task40
Wider reading or practice10
Total study time150

Resources & Reading list

Y. A. Cengel, M. A. Boles (2007). Thermodynamics - An Engineering Approach. 

R. Decher (1994). Energy Conversion - Systems, Flow Physics and Engineering. 

Analysis of engineering cycles: power, refrigerating, and gas liquefaction plant.

Applied thermodynamics.

P. Breeze (2005). Power generation technologies. 



MethodPercentage contribution
Continuous Assessment 50%
Final Assessment  50%


MethodPercentage contribution
Set Task 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Set Task 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

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