MSc Renewable Energy and Clean Technology

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Introduction to Power Systems

Course unit fact file
Unit code EEEN60401
Credit rating 15
Unit level FHEQ level 7 – master's degree or fourth year of an integrated master's degree
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Available as a free choice unit? No



Power System Plant:

  • Overhead Lines: basic design, air-gap clearances, conductor electro-mechanical aspects, thermal rating, current rating, insulation design, environmental aspects including EMFs, conductor vibrations, and lightning protection
  • Power Cables: basic design, cable ducting, installation and lay formation, cable materials and electrical parameters, thermal rating calculations
  • Switchgear: types of switchgear, circuit breaker technologies, interruption media, characteristics of an electric arc, high and low resistance interruption methods, transient recovery voltage
  • Transformers: structure and functions of basic components, volts per turn calculation, tap changers, oil/cellulose insulation materials

Power System Analysis:

  • AC circuits: impedance, phasors, real and reactive power.
  • 3-phase systems: delta and wye connections, line/phase voltage, instantaneous/complex power.
  • Per-unit calculations: calculating different bases, converting between bases, equivalent circuits.
  • 2-bus power flow: power flow between two busbars, transmission of real and reactive power, load modelling.
  • Review of methods for generation of electrical energy in modern power systems.
  • Basic concepts of power system protection and protection coordination.



This course unit detail provides the framework for delivery in the current academic year and may be subject to change due to any additional Covid-19 impact.  Please see Blackboard / course unit related emails for any further updates.

The programme unit aims to: introduce the main power system components such as overhead lines, power cables, switchgear and power transformers used in transmission and distribution of electrical energy including their function, structure and design. The unit will also impart the fundamental knowledge required to model and analyse basic electric power systems by introducing the techniques required for power flow, fault calculations and power system protection.


Learning outcomes

All intended learning outcomes below are developed and assessed. On successful completion of the course, students will be able to:


Describe the function, structure and design of the main power system components.


Explain the ageing, degradation and failure mechanisms of power system components.


Calculate design and operating parameters of power system components.


Design a simple electrical network and justify the selection of power system components.


Analyse simple AC circuits using calculations and phasor diagrams.


Calculate per-unit quantities.


Calculate power flow in 2-bus power systems.


Describe methods for generation of electrical energy in modern power systems.


Describe basic concepts, elements and principles of power system protection.


Teaching and learning methods

Traditional lectures with notes and overheads available on Blackboard

A piece of coursework will be set that will be started in the first week of lectures and which will be used throughout the unit as a problem based learning exercise.

Revision lectures will be provided during the unit.


Assessment methods

Method Weight
Other 30%
Written exam 70%

Written Exam

The exam forms 70% of the total unit assessment

Duration: 3 hours, 4 questions


The coursework forms 30% of the total unit assessment and is a 10 page report.



Feedback methods


Recommended reading

Glover, J. D., Mulukutla, S. S., Overbye, T. (2012). Power System Analysis & Design, SI Version, Cengage Learning. 

Grainger, J. J., Stevenson, W. D. (2015). Power system analysis. McGraw-Hill.

Grigsby, L. L. (2012). The electric power engineering handbook. CRC.

Kuffel, E. (2000). High voltage engineering: fundamentals, 2nd ed., Oxford, Butterwort-Heinemann/Newnes.

Koch, H. (2014). Gas Insulated Substations, Chichester, IEEE Press/Wiley.

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 30
Practical classes & workshops 6
Tutorials 6
Independent study hours
Independent study 108

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Andrew Forsyth Unit coordinator
Lujia Chen Unit coordinator

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