Master of Energy
The Institutional Research Theme “Energy” strives to provide the best balance between the University’s current research activities and the energy focus areas that are prioritised by Government, with an initial focus on electrical energy. This will set the University on the road towards national relevancy as it will be searching for solutions to South Africa’s energy problems.
The main research themes include:
- Energy Production (This includes all viable energy production technologies, ranging from coal to nuclear to renewables.)
- Energy Distribution (This includes highly relevant topics such as “smart grids” and energy storage, which are gaining importance in the light of the increasing contribution of renewable energies such as solar and wind energy.)
- Energy Optimisation (The majority of energy plants are not very efficient, which creates considerable opportunities for research to improve thermal efficiency, improve efficiency by managing the demand side, plant lifetime extension, etc.)
- Advanced Materials (Almost all energy systems make use of advanced materials. Specific focus materials would be, for example, high-temperature materials and graphite.)
- Policy, Economics and Society (Many energy systems do not fail technically, but fail because of poor policy decisions, legal shortcomings, poor economic modelling, poor project management, or poor societal management strategies.)
- Environment (Climate change is seen as a large component within the energy sector, notably aspects that link to greenhouse gases, nuclear and other waste, and carbon footprint.)
All of the selected research areas also enjoy international interest. By achieving research excellence in these areas the University would enhance the international recognition it enjoys in the field of energy research. Initially, six new high-impact research projects will be undertaken and will serve as a benchmark for the initiative’s future project portfolio development.
An important benefit of the proposed Energy IRT is its multidisciplinary nature. This is in stark contrast with traditional university research models that tend to be focused on a single discipline. Apart from the obvious benefit, which is that it will enhance the value of the University’s research, it will also allow the Energy IRT to become relevant to the wider industrial energy sector from the outset. Contact with the energy sector and the multidisciplinary nature of the research projects within the realm of the Energy IRT will facilitate efforts to obtain funding from outside sources.
This school offers programs in:
Last updated January 28, 2018