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Analysis of Thermal Systems


Credit Hours:


Learning Objective:

a.) To provide the fundamentals of thermal system analysis and modeling. b.) To develop an in-depth understanding of vapor compression systems and their equipment, absorption systems, advanced heat pumping technologies, and not-in-kind cooling technologies as well as thermal storage systems


This course covers the philosophy, theory, and applications of the analysis, modeling and optimization of thermal systems. More specifically, vapor compression, absorption, advanced heat pumping and refrigeration cycles, and not-in-kind cooling technologies are studied in detail. Students combine the use of thermodynamics, heat transfer, fluid mechanics, and numerical methods to develop and apply mathematical models for the analysis and optimization of specific cycles and their equipment for real applications

Topics Covered:

Thermodynamic Cycle Analysis and Optimization; Psychrometrics; Heat Transfer and Pressure Drop; System Modeling; Refrigerants; Compressors; Condensers; Evaporators; Expansion Devices; Vapor Compression Systems; Absorption Cycles; Air Cycles; Stirling Cycles; Ericsson Cycles; Advanced Heat Pumping Cycles; Thermal Storage; Not-in-Kind Cooling Technologies; Organic Rankine Cycles


Minimum requirements: ME 20000 Thermodynamics I, ME 31500 Heat and Mass Transfer; Preferred: ME 30000 Thermodynamics II

Applied / Theory:

50 / 50

Web Address:

Web Content:

Syllabus, lecture notes, homework assignments, and chat rooms.


Homework problems are assigned in each lecture; the problems are illustrative of the general material covered in class; each assignment has the format of a mini-project and should be solved by writing a small program using the EES software; programs written in Python are also accepted; homework assignments are collected via Gradescope


One semester project will be assigned before midway through the semester. The semester project differs from homework assignments in that it does not possess a unique solution. Students will have to submit a written report to complete the project that addresses the project requirements.


No exams will be given.


Required???None. Recommended reference textbook list available from course instructor.

Computer Requirements:

Minimum requirements: Engineering Equation Solver (EES) software tool [developed by F-Chart Software (]; EES is available to Purdue students via GoRemote. Alternative: Python 3.8 (or above) and the open-source CoolProp library.

Other Requirements:

Homework assignments and the semester project are recommended be solved using the Engineering Equation Solver (EES) software tool [developed by F-Chart Software (]; EES is available to Purdue students via GoRemote. Alternatively, homework assignments and semester project can also be solved by using Python 3.8 (or above) coupled to CoolProp (or REFPROP).

ProEd Minimum Requirements: