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BEng Mechanical Engineering / Course details

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Mechanical Engineering Systems

Course unit fact file
Unit code MECH11311
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 1
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Available as a free choice unit? No


An engineering system is a set of components that function together to perform a required duty. This unit takes two practical systems (automotive propulsion system, automotive propulsion system) and introduces the student to the workings of their individual components and how they contribute to the overall functioning and performance of the system. A sound knowledge of how such systems work and perform is the starting point for the design of efficient/effective vehicles. The intended learning outcomes are focussed on both descriptive knowledge and quantitative analysis. This module is delivered in the first semester and is a taster of what mechanical engineering is all about. Its integrating nature should serve to motivate students to learn the elemental disciplines taught in other modules (e.g. engineering mechanics, themodynamics,etc). The course is delivered as 24 hours of lectures plus 6hrs tutorial sessions. Assessment is 80% exam and 20% assignment-type coursework.

This course unit detail provides the framework for delivery in 20/21 and may be subject to change due to any additional Covid-19 impact.  Please see Blackboard / course unit related emails for any further updates


To study, quantitatively and qualitatively, the workings of the individual components of a typical mechanical system and how these components contribute to the overall functioning and performance of the system. 


1. Automotive propulsion system – internal combustion engines (four/two stroke, petrol/diesel); fuel metering (carburetion, fuel injection); turbocharging; crank-effort diagrams, flywheels; friction clutches; manual gearboxes (simple gear trains); automatic gearbox (planetary gear trains); final drive/differential-vehicle performance (traction force, sources of resistance, transmission efficiency).
2. Aircraft propulsion systems (aero-engines) – how and why do fixed-wing aircraft fly, simple thrust equation, propulsion efficiency; propeller/reciprocating engine system, power consumed by drag, excess power; simple propeller analysis, variable pitch propellers; turbojet, turbofan, turboprop/turboshaft, applicability/suitability of different types of aero-engines to different applications. 

Assessment methods

Method Weight
Other 20%
Written exam 80%

Other - assessed tutorial work

Feedback methods

Exam via script viewing 

Assessed tutorial wrk

  • feedback session (model solutions presented)
  • For QA of CW1: generic feedback form and individually annotated scripts (pdf files) in Turnitin.

For QB of CW1 and CW2:


Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
eAssessment 12
Lectures 24
Tutorials 6
Independent study hours
Independent study 58

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Philip Bonello Unit coordinator

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