AER courses

AER 0507 Introduction to Fusion Energy

Nuclear reactions between light elements provide the energy source for the sun and stars. On earth, such reactions could form the basis of an essentially inexhaustible energy resource. In order for the fusion reactions to proceed at a rate suitable for the generation of electricity, the fuels (usually hydrogen) must be heated to temperatures near 100 million Kelvin. At these temperatures, the fuel will exist in the plasma state. This course will cover: (i) the basic physics of fusion, including reaction cross-sections, particle energy distribution, Lawson criterion and radiation balance, (ii) plasma properties including plasma waves, plasma transport, heating and stability, and (iii) magnetic confinement methods. Topics will be related to current experimental research in the field.

AER 0510 Aerospace Propulsion

Scope and history of jet and rocket propulsion; fundamentals of air-breathing and rocket propulsion; fluid mechanics and thermodynamics of propulsion including boundary layer mechanics and combustion; principles of aircraft jet engines, engine components and performance; principles of rocket propulsion, rocket performance, and chemical rockets; environmental impact of aircraft jet engines.

AER 1301 Kinetic Theory of Gases

Introductory discussion of significant length dimensions; different flow regimes, continuum, transition, collision-free; and a brief history of gas kinetic theory. Equilibrium kinetic theory; the article distribution function; Maxell-Boltzmann distribution. Collision dynamics; collision frequency and mean free path. Elementary transport theory, transport coefficients, mean free path method. Boltzmann equation; derivation, Boltzmann H-theorem, collision operators. Generalized transport theory; Maxwell´s equations of change; approximate solution techniques, Chapman -Ensog perturbative and Grad series expansion methods, moment closures; derivation of the Euler and Navier-Stokes equations, higher-order closures. Free molecular aerodynamics. Shock waves.

AER 1304 Fundamentals of Combustion

This course starts with a review of chemical thermodynamics, statistical mechanics, equilibrium chemistry, chemical kinetics, and conservation equations. Then, the following subjects are covered: chemical and dynamic structure of laminar premixed, diffusion, and partially premixed flames; turbulent premixed combustion; turbulent diffusive combustion in one and two-phase flows; aerodynamics and stabilization of flames; ignition, extinction and combustion instabilities; non-intrusive combustion diagnostics and flame spectroscopy.

AER 1306 Special Topics in Reacting Flows

This course provides the students who are intending a career in combustion/reacting flows, fluid mechanics or propulsion an opportunity to do an in-depth study of some of the current academic research areas with implications of practical importance. It will also be suitable for graduate students who have a good background in essentials of their research area, but need a specialized course to cover material not available in other graduate courses. Intention is not to replace or to overlap with the literature review of the students theses work. The course will cover 3 to 4 topics from the following: non-intrusive experimental techniques in isothermal and reacting flows; activation energy asymptotics; high-speed combustion; metal combustion in propulsion; thermo-acoustics in propulsion systems; soot formation and oxidation kinetics; theory of partially-premixed turbulent combustion; synthesis of nano-materials by combustion; high-pressure combustion. Topic selection will depend on the interests of the students taking the course. Similar topics will be added as needed.

AER 1320 Air-Breathing Propulsion

Ramjets and Scramjets. Aerothermodynamics of supersonic inlets, combustion chambers and nozzles. On- and off-design propulsive performance of cruising

AER 1706 Fusion Reactor Systems

The course will consist of five biweekly seminars/meetings at which students will make 10-15 minute presentations, and prepare 3-5 page reports, on one of five topics related to the design of fusion reactors. Proposed Topics are: (i) confinement techniques, (ii) plasma heating methods, (iii) breeding blanket concepts, (iv) plasma diagnostic techniques, and (v) advanced fusion concepts. It is anticipated that some of the topics will change from year to year.

AER 1716 Fusion Reactor Materials

This course is available to students doing research in the field of fusion energy at the doctoral level. The course provides the student an opportunity to do an in-depth study of: (i) a particular material in a fusion context, (ii) a particular material requirement of a fusion reactor, or (iii) a particular physical or chemical mechanism involved in plasma-materials interactions. Past topics have included: liquid lithium as a plasma-facing material, neutron irradiation effects on beryllium and tungsten, implications of an all-tungsten or an all-carbon first wall in a D-T burning reactor, and tritium inventory issues.