About this Course
4.7
463 ratings
104 reviews
COURSE DESCRIPTION This course provides an introduction to the most powerful engineering principles you will ever learn - Thermodynamics: the science of transferring energy from one place or form to another place or form. We will introduce the tools you need to analyze energy systems from solar panels, to engines, to insulated coffee mugs. More specifically, we will cover the topics of mass and energy conservation principles; first law analysis of control mass and control volume systems; properties and behavior of pure substances; and applications to thermodynamic systems operating at steady state conditions. COURSE FORMAT The class consists of lecture videos, which average 8 to 12 minutes in length. The videos include integrated In-Video Quiz questions. There are also quizzes at the end of each section, which include problems to practice your analytical skills that are not part of video lectures. There are no exams. GRADING POLICY Each question is worth 1 point. A correct answer is worth +1 point. An incorrect answer is worth 0 points. There is no partial credit. You can attempt each quiz up to three times every 8 hours, with an unlimited number of total attempts. The number of questions that need to be answered correctly to pass are displayed at the beginning of each quiz. Following the Mastery Learning model, students must pass all 8 practice quizzes with a score of 80% or higher in order to complete the course. ESTIMATED WORKLOAD If you follow the suggested deadlines, lectures and quizzes will each take approximately ~3 hours per week each, for a total of ~6 hours per week. TARGET AUDIENCE Basic undergraduate engineering or science student. FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS - What are the prerequisites for taking this course? An introductory background (high school or first year college level) in chemistry, physics, and calculus will help you be successful in this class. -What will this class prepare me for in the academic world? Thermodynamics is a prerequisite for many follow-on courses, like heat transfer, internal combustion engines, propulsion, and gas dynamics, to name a few. -What will this class prepare me for in the real world? Energy is one of the top challenges we face as a global society. Energy demands are deeply tied to the other major challenges of clean water, health, food resources, and poverty. Understanding how energy systems work is key to understanding how to meet all these needs around the world. Because energy demands are only increasing, this course also provides the foundation for many rewarding professional careers....
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Beginner Level

Beginner Level

Clock

Suggested: 12 hours of videos and quizzes

Approx. 20 hours to complete
Comment Dots

English

Subtitles: English

Skills you will gain

EnergyEnergy AnalysisMechanical EngineeringEnergy Systems
Globe

100% online courses

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Calendar

Flexible deadlines

Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.
Beginner Level

Beginner Level

Clock

Suggested: 12 hours of videos and quizzes

Approx. 20 hours to complete
Comment Dots

English

Subtitles: English

Syllabus - What you will learn from this course

1

Section
Clock
2 hours to complete

Week 1

In this module, we frame the context of energy and power supply and demand around the world. You will learn that understanding and correctly using units are critical skills for successfully analyzing energy systems. It is also important to be able to identify and categorize systems as “open” or “closed” and “steady state” or “transient”. Thermodynamics is a topic that is very notation intense, but the notation is very helpful as a check on our assumptions and our mathematics. Additionally, in this module we will refresh our understanding of some common thermodynamic properties....
Reading
6 videos (Total 69 min), 1 reading, 1 quiz
Video6 videos
01.02 - Drivers for Changing the Way We Use Energy9m
01.03 - The Units of Energy and Power and the Sectors of Energy Supply and Demand13m
01.04 - Defining Open and Closed Systems12m
01.05 - Thermodynamic Properties9m
01.06 - Conservation of Energy for Closed Systems16m
Reading1 reading
Help us learn more about you!10m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 156m

2

Section
Clock
2 hours to complete

Week 2

In this module, we will get started with the fundamental definitions for energy transfer, including the definitions of work transfer and heat transfer. We will also show (by example) how state diagrams are valuable for explaining energy transfer processes. Then, we have all the tools we need to define the 1st Law of Thermodynamics also called the Conservation of Energy. Your second assignment will emphasize these principles and skills....
Reading
6 videos (Total 85 min), 1 quiz
Video6 videos
02.02 - Example: the Work Required to Compress Air17m
02.03 - The First Law of Thermodynamics for a Closed System10m
02.04 - Heat Transfer9m
02.05 - Phase Diagrams20m
02.06 - 2D Phase Diagrams17m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 228m

3

Section
Clock
2 hours to complete

Week 3

In this module, we introduce our first abstract concepts of thermodynamics properties – including the specific heats, internal energy, and enthalpy. It will take some time for you to become familiar with what these properties represent and how we use these properties. For example, internal energy and enthalpy are related to temperature and pressure, but they are two distinct thermodynamic properties. One of the hardest concepts of thermodynamics is relating the independent thermodynamic properties to each other. We have to become experts at these state relations in order to be successful in our analysis of energy systems. There are several common approximations, including the ideal gas model, which we will use in this class. The key to determining thermodynamic properties is practice, practice, practice! Do as many examples as you can....
Reading
6 videos (Total 88 min), 1 quiz
Video6 videos
03.02 - Internal Energy, Enthalpy, and the Specific Heats15m
03.03 - The Incompressible Substance and the Ideal Gas Models for Equations of State16m
03.04 - More Outcomes of the Ideal Gas Model15m
03.05 - Conservation of Mass for Open Systems11m
03.06 - Steam Turbine Example - Part 114m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 330m

4

Section
Clock
2 hours to complete

Week 4

In this module we introduce the combined application of the Conservation of Mass and the Conservation of Energy for system analysis. We also review the common assumptions for typical energy transfer devices, like heat exchangers, pumps and turbines. Together these components will form the basis for all power plants used around the world....
Reading
6 videos (Total 96 min), 1 quiz
Video6 videos
04.02 - Steady State, Steady Flow Devices24m
04.03 - Another Example: Compressing Water15m
04.04 - Steam Turbine Example - Part 211m
04.05 - Example of Cooling a Microprocessor - Starting the Analysis16m
04.06 - Steam Tables Discussion8m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 430m
4.7
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50%

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83%

got a tangible career benefit from this course
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40%

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Top Reviews

By TOApr 11th 2018

Great practical information to thermodynamical processes and machines with many calculated examples. A bit light on the fundamental definitions, like entropy, but very good for hands-on work.

By SHAug 15th 2017

Great intro course to thermodynamics. A follow up course with more advanced topics (2nd law, exergy etc.) would definitely be useful. A course at the graduate level would be very welcome!

Instructor

Margaret Wooldridge, Ph.D.

Arthur F. Thurnau Professor
Mechanical Engineering, Aerospace Engineering

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Frequently Asked Questions

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