TKJ4200 - Irreversible Thermodynamics


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: Project
Grade: Letter grades

Evaluation Weighting Duration Grade deviation Examination aids
Project 100/100

Course content

The course extends classical thermodynamics beyond equilibrium and introduces the concept of entropy production. The students will learn what the entropy production is, where it comes from and how it can be used to:

  • Formulate consistent transport laws for heat, mass and charge transfer that include coupling. These transport laws will be used to explain thermal diffusion (transport in reservoirs), Peltier and Seebeck effects (energy in space and degradation of batteries), reverse electrodialysis (energy from mixing salt-water and fresh-water), membrane transport, fuel cells and other important examples where renewable energy technologies are in focus.
  • Identify, characterize, and minimize lost work and exergy destruction in processes and process equipment. Concepts such as exergy and lost work will be explained, and the students will learn to use them in practice to analyze and improve the energy efficiency of processes and process equipment. Scientifically founded guidelines for energy efficient operation and design will be presented and explained.

The course provides a powerful toolbox, both for students interested in transport phenomena, and for students who want to learn how to improve energy efficiency; a necessary task to reach many of UN's sustainability goals.

Learning outcome

After finishing the course, the student is expected to:

  • Be able to derive the entropy production for a simple system with transport of heat, mass and charge.
  • Define and understand common measures for energy efficiency.
  • Be able to propose equations for transport that agree with the second law of thermodynamics.
  • Understand when such equations are relevant in applications.
  • Know what exergy destruction and lost work is, and how to use these concepts to improve the energy efficiency of processes.
  • Know how to use guidelines for energy efficient design and operation.

Learning methods and activities

Lectures and compulsory exercises in English. A theoretical or experimental project. The student projects will be adapted to the background of the student. Grading is based on the project report. The students will have a short presentation of their project before delivering the report.

Expected work load in the course is 200-225 hours.

Compulsory assignments

  • Exercises
  • Presentation

Further on evaluation

The final grade is based on the written project report. If the candidates are working in a team, the team receives a common grade.

Course materials

  • S. Kjelstrup, D. Bedeaux, E. Johannessen og J. Gross: Thermodynamics for Engineers. World Scientific, 2.ed. Singapore, 2017.
  • Extra chapters e.g. on exergy destruction, under preparation for the new edition of the book above.

Credit reductions

Course code Reduction From To
SIK3085 7.5
KJ8903 4.0 AUTUMN 2015
More on the course



Version: 1
Credits:  7.5 SP
Study level: Second degree level


Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  AUTUMN 2024

Language of instruction: English

Location: Trondheim

Subject area(s)
  • Thermodynamics
  • Thermal Energy - Energy Systems
  • Physical Chemistry
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Technological subjects
Contact information
Course coordinator:

Department with academic responsibility
Department of Chemistry


Examination arrangement: Project

Term Status code Evaluation Weighting Examination aids Date Time Examination system Room *
Autumn ORD Project 100/100 INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

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