Power system engineering is about keeping things in balance. Not just the balance between generation and load or between production and consumption of reactive power. It is also about the balance between the cost of energy and its environmental impact or the balance between the reliability of the supply and the investments needed to develop the system. This course will teach you how to quantify both sides of these equations and then how to improve the balances through technological advances and the implementation of sophisticated computing techniques.
In the first semester, you learn how power systems are designed and operated. This involves studying not only the characteristics of the various components (generators, lines, cables, transformers and power electronics devices) but also how these components interact. Through lectures and computer-based exercises, you become familiar with power flow and fault calculations and you learn how the techniques used to study the behaviour of large systems. Experiments in our high voltage laboratory give you an appreciation for the challenges of insulation coordination.
During the second semester, the course units explore in more depth the 'operation' and the 'plant' aspects of power systems. For example, you will study how renewable generation is integrated into a power system or how to assess and remedy power quality problems.
Prior to your summer break, a preliminary study and the outline of your MSc dissertation project is completed, this is fully developed throughout the second year of the course. The year-long enhanced individual research provides you with great opportunities to develop advanced research skills and to explore in-depth some of the topics discussed during the course. This includes training in research methods, and advanced simulation and experimental techniques in power systems and high voltage engineering as well as academic paper writing and poster and paper presentation.
Manchester Engineering Campus Development (MECD), the University of Manchester's new £400m purpose-built home for engineering and material science, is nearing completion. The physical move to the new development is scheduled to take place between January 2022 and December 2022. Whilst it is anticipated that access to equipment or work on projects for which such access is required may be limited during the period of the move, plans are underway to ensure that any disruption caused is minimised, a wide selection of dissertation projects will continue to be available, and excellent student experience remains pivotal.