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SPG8024 : Quantifying Energy Decision Making

  • Offered for Year: 2022/23
  • Module Leader(s): Dr David Greenwood
  • Owning School: Engineering
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


To enable business enterprise students to physically and economically quantify energy decision making through knowledge and understanding of:

- Energy science concepts described in appropriate quantities and units.

- Energy supply contexts

- Issues influencing energy project evaluation.

- Economic appraisal methods for energy projects.

Outline Of Syllabus

Energy science concepts, quantities and units
- Human need for heat and work – energy.
- Definitions and physical forms – energy, heat, work and related properties.
- Measuring physical quantities – units for energy systems.
- Key distinctions – work and power, heat and temperature.
- Energy transformations, efficiency and value.

Issues influencing energy plant evaluation and selection:
- Meeting demand in electrical power systems.
- Supply characteristics of renewable and thermal energy generators.
- Renewable energy resources characteristics.
- Marginal costs of generation.
- Energy market structures and generator merit order.
- Security of supply, reliability and plant margin.
- Capacity markets and incentivising clean energy.

Economic appraisal for energy projects:
- Time-value of money and discounted cash flow for long-term projects.
- Project financial appraisal approaches based on lifetime cost.
- Unit cost of production and levilised cost of energy.
- Asset depreciation.
- Carbon abatement costs.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture91:009:00For expansion pre-recorded lectures. Can be delivered online if necessary.
Structured Guided LearningLecture materials270:209:00Non-synchronous, pre-recorded lecture materials
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion115:0015:002000 word + non-textual report
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading130:0030:00Using course materials and reading list
Structured Guided LearningStructured research and reading activities19:009:00Following written course materials
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching11:301:30Exploration of assessment tasks. Can be delivered online if necessary.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops12:002:00Exploration and discussion of content. Can be delivered online if necessary.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery11:001:00Early stage review. Can be delivered online if necessary.
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study122:3022:30Exploratory reading and research
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesModule talk11:001:00Setting the module expectations. Can be delivered online if necessary.
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

This module is delivered through a combination of written course materials, pre-recorded video presentations and opportunities for students to check their understanding directly with the teaching staff. Scheduled activities expect to take place in person but can be provided online if circumstances necessitate this delivery mode.

A workshop is held for the students to gain feedback on their understanding and explore the broader context of decision making in energy systems.

Guidance is provided for the wider reading that the students must undertake to gain sufficient understanding of the subject area and how to access and make use of the wide range of resources that are available on this topic.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Report2M100Evaluate students’ ability to apply learning to decision making in an energy system - context, physical & financial aspects
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Prob solv exercises2MEvaluate students’ ability to carry out the mathematical analysis within the course
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Assignment is designed for students to demonstrate the knowledge and skills they have acquired in energy numeracy, correct use of units, the context of energy systems and economic evaluation. This must be communicated effectively within the specified length, making efficient use of text and non-textual elements. To show high level of achievement students must apply independent research with appropriate referencing of the literature to demonstrate work beyond the module materials.

Reading Lists