ECE: Electrical & Computer Engineering
Accredited by ABET
Undergraduate Programs

ECE 4364 Alternate Energy Systems

Fall 2016 textbook list

The Fall 2016 ECE textbook list is available online for students.

Current Prerequisites & Course Offering

For current prerequisites for a particular course, and to view course offerings for a particular semester, see the Virginia Tech Course Timetables.

Return to course list

ECE 4364 Alternate Energy Systems (3C)

Electric energy from alternative energy sources including solar, wind, hydro, biomass, geothermal and ocean. Characteristics of direct conversion, electromechanical conversion, and storage devices used in alternative energy systems. Power system issues associated with integration of small scale energy sources into the electricity grid.

What is the reason for this course?

Alternate sources of energy are a reality now. Large numbers of wind turbine generators, solar thermal and photovoltaic, and hydroelectric power plants are delivering power in both stand-alone and grid-connected modes in the US and many countries in the world. On the other hand, research and development work are underway at different universities, national laboratories and private organizations to perfect the energy conversion and delivery process from various other alternative energy sources. This course stresses the need for understanding the energy Conversion process, economics, supply and reliability of alternate energy sources along with their integration into the electric power system grid. Various design tools for analyzing alternate energy sources will be taught using microcomputer models.

Online Course. Technical Elective. Typically offered: Spring. Program Area: Power.

Prerequisites: STAT 4714.

Why are these prerequisites or corequisites required?

This course assumes that students can analyze data to obtain their frequency distributions and determine expected values as covered in STAT 4714. Students must also be able to use Mathematica or similar tools to perform numerical integration.

Department Syllabus Information:

Major Measurable Learning Objectives:
  • explain the role of alternate energy sources in the supply of electrical power
  • analyze and design alternative energy systems
  • statistically analyze the long-term capacity credit of energy sources
  • perform cost-benefit analysis of alternate energy systems

Course Topics
Topic Percentage
Alternate sources of generation 5%
Wind energy 15%
Solar energy 15%
Tidal energy 5%
Geothermal energy 5%
Hydroelectric energy 5%
Non-conventional hydropower 10%
Storage systems 10%
Fuel cell 10%
Hybrid systems 10%
Life-cycle costing 10%

Return to course list