Nine undergraduate energy curriculum development projects launch in summer 2015

Amanda Graham MITEI

To keep the undergraduate Energy Studies Minor current with the ever-changing landscape of energy science, policy, and technology, the S.D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation has provided funding for developing new classes and adapting existing ones. Nine projects will launch with this support in summer 2015. Five of the projects will create new energy-focused classes, and four will adapt classes already in MIT’s curriculum.

New classes

Energy Management for a Sustainable Future

Harvey Michaels, Sloan School of Management
An elective focused on the demand side of energy in the built environment, including technology, services, analytics, and policy.

Fundamentals of Smart and Resilient Grids

Konstantin Turitsyn, Mechanical Engineering
A technical elective emphasizing the integration of novel technologies (renewables, storage) into existing power systems.

Hey Atoms, What Have You Done for Me Lately?

Jeffrey Grossman, Materials Science and Engineering
An elective introducing first-year students to the challenges of energy generation, storage, and distribution at an atomic scale.

Political Economy of Global Energy Markets

Valerie Karplus, Sloan School of Management, and Christopher Warshaw, Political Science
A multidisciplinary option for the Energy Studies Minor’s Social Science Foundations of Energy requirement examining how political and economic motivations and constraints shape energy systems.


Ruben Juanes, Civil and Environmental Engineering
An Energy Studies Minor elective and a core class for the energy resources track in Course 1’s new flexible 1-ENG major, where students will be involved in emerging research on the physics and visualization of subsurface reservoir flows.

Adaptations of existing classes

22.081J, Introduction to Sustainable Energy

Michael Golay, Nuclear Science and Engineering
Designing an online class.

10.28, Chemical-Biological Engineering Laboratory

Jean-Francois Hamel, Chemical Engineering
Incorporating clean energy.

6.061, Introduction to Electric Power Systems

James Kirtley, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
Incorporating energy storage.

ESD.162J, Engineering, Economics, and Regulation of the Electric Power Sector

Ignacio Perez-Arriaga, Engineering Systems Division
Adapting for undergraduates.

This article appears in the issue of Energy Futures.

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