Energy Portal

Faculty of Engineering, LTH

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Energy Conversion and Energy Systems

A modern society is extremely dependent on transport and communication systems, as well as heat and electricity supplies; in other words, a reliable energy system is of strategic importance. It should also be a sustainable system, which is a considerable challenge, bearing in mind that the present energy system is mainly based on finite resources such as fossil fuels.
Research in energy systems and the environment includes studies on various levels: local, regional, national and global. The use and distribution of various kinds of energy, as well as the conversion of energy from one form to another, taking into account environmental restrictions, are central areas of research. Both separate phenomena and complex processes and equipment are being studied. This area of research is thus interdisciplinary in nature, and requires collaboration between groups in basic and applied subjects, as well as interaction with industry.
Great interest is currently being focused on renewable energy sources and techniques for their efficient use. Apart from wind and solar energy, this includes the use of biofuels and techniques for the conversion of chemically bound energy into heat and power.
Environmentally friendly combustion, regardless of the fuel used, is an important area of research which requires the support of basic subjects such as physics, chemistry and mechanics. The development of environmentally friendly energy-conversion processes for the transport sector and for the generation of electricity, etc., will be a central task in the field of energy engineering. Apart from the basic subjects mentioned above, this research will benefit from subjects such as materials engineering, electrochemistry and automatic control.
Adaptation to environmentally friendly energy conversion requires the more efficient use of existing energy systems, higher energy efficiency and reduced emissions (i.e. improved combustion/gasification, new engines, catalysers, etc.), as well as the development of alternative fuels and techniques.
The departments of  Energy Sciences, Chemical Engineering, Industrial Electrical Engineering & Automation, together with the Division of Combustion Physics, are extremely active in this area. The Combustion Centre (FTC) and the Centre for Combustion Science and Technology (CECOST) at LTH, and the centre of competence at the Division of Combustion Engines are also involved in this research.
Solar energy can be used either passively, e.g. in buildings, or actively using solar panels or solar cells. Solar panels can be used to heat water or buildings, while solar cells can be used for electricity production for the national grid or in stand-alone systems. Research into the use of solar energy is being carried out at the divisions of Energy & Building Design and Building Physics. Undergraduate courses are also given in the subject.

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