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FE407 Renewable Energy Technology and Resource Assessment

Course description for academic year 2022/2023

Contents and structure

This course begins by introducing some of the underlying principles guiding the transition towards renewable energy. It covers resource assessment, energy conversion technologies, energy application, energy economics, and environmental impact assessments of solar, wind, bioenergy, hydropower, geothermal, tidal, and wave energy.    

We begin the discussion of each technology by introducing the underlying physics. This is followed by a discussion of the renewable resource. The students also introduced to the basic working principles and characteristics of conventional energy technologies, such as thermal power generation and individual and district heating systems. Finally, we discuss the technical aspects of how these aforementioned resources are converted into mechanical- and/or electrical energy.

This is achieved through a combination of lectures, class exercises, and home assignments. Success in this course requires the active engagement of students.  

Learning Outcome


  • Students will develop knowledge about the guiding principles of renewable energy, incl. discerning between finite vs. renewable energy, sustainable energy levels, basic characteristics of various energy sources, and methods for determining efficiency.
  • Students will develop knowledge about solar energy and solar photovoltaic technology, incl. electromagnetic radiation and its temporal and geographical variation in intensity on Earth, in addition to the construction and function of silicon solar PV technology.      
  • Students will develop knowledge about hydro-electric power generation, incl. determining resource basis, potential power/energi delivered, and losses which can occur.
  • Students will develop knowledge about wind resources and wind turbines, incl. the determination- and analysis of wind regimes based on measured data, determination of among other the Betz-limit, thrust, torque, lift- and drag forces, etc.
  • Students will develop knowledge about bioenergy technology, incl. biogas- production and system dimensioning, and liquid biofuel production from biomass resources.


  • Students will develop the skills to determine and/or quantitatively assess the general energetic and technological parameters associated with renewable energy.
  • The students will be able to map energy resources and energy technologies, evaluate energy production and levelized cost of energy, and make comparison between conventional and renewable energy technologies based on levelized cost of energy.


  • Students will develop the competence to assess and solve complex problems associated with renewable energy projects.
  • Students will develop the competence to consider the role of renewable energy within the context of the ongoing energy transition.
  • Students will develop the competence to understand the functioning of relevant renewable energy technologies, e.g., solar-, hydro-, wind-, and bio-energies, and apply this towards project planning.
  • Students will develop the competence to understand the physical and practical limitations to the energy available from a given resource.

Entry requirements


Recommended previous knowledge

MA415, FE405, and FE404

Teaching methods

Lectures and exercises.

Compulsory learning activities

The students will be given four assignments and are required to deliver four (4) reports. Three (3) of  four (4) must be approved (passed) before one may take the exam. The approved (passed) assignments will be valid for the six (6) semesters for those students who want to retake the course.


Written school exam 4 hours.

Grading scale A-F, where F represents a fail. 

Examination support material

Basic calculator (non-programmable). 

More about examination support material