Postgraduate study

Electrical Engineering MSc

This course offers a range of different modules. Topics include electrical machines, power electronics and electrical applications.
 
  
Duration
1 year full-time
Entry requirements
A high 2:2 or equivalent in Electrical and/or Electronic Engineering, or other relevant degree
IELTS
6.0 (no less than 5.5 in any element), if these grades are not met, English preparatory courses are available

If these grades are not met, English preparatory courses may be available
Start date
September
UK/EU fees
£7,785 - Terms apply
International fees
£22,815 - Terms apply
Accreditation
IET (Institution of Engineering and Technology)
Campus
University Park Campus
 

 

Overview

This MSc in Electrical Engineering provides scope to study a range of topics from the electrical engineering field. These include power networks, electrical machines, drives and motor control, energy conversion, power electronic converters and their design and modern control methods.

Also available are more application focussed modules covering topics such as power systems for transportation and renewable energy.

Our objective is to help you develop the confidence to work as a professional, at ease with the conventions of the discipline, and ready to tackle any area of research in electrical engineering.

If you are interested in a two year electrical engineering programme you may want to consider the Sustainable Transportation and Electrical Power Systems (Erasmus Mundus) MSc.

Key facts

  • Students will gain experience of the type of problems encountered by academic and industrial researchers.

  • This course is suitable for graduates of related disciplines who wish to convert to electrical engineering.

  • This course is accredited by the IET (Institution of Engineering and Technology) to meet the further learning requirements of a Chartered Engineer.
        IET-logo
 

Full course details

Applicants must have a high 2:2 degree or equivalent in Electrical or Electronic Engineering, or other relevant degree

This course is taught on a full-time basis over 12 months and consists of 120 credits of taught modules and a 60 credit independent research project. 

Students will take optional modules from across the range of electrical engineering topics. Planning and preparation for the project is undertaken during the spring semester. 

The modular structure of the MSc Electrical Engineering offers you flexibility, allowing you to choose the modules that most reflect your interests and feed into your research project.

You will be taught using up to date practice, including the use of appropriate electronic resources. Teaching is a mix of lectures, workshops, lab work, tutorials and projects, with assessment usually performed through formal examinations and coursework.

Learning outcomes

Key learning outcomes of the course are for students to: 

  • develop a thorough understanding of current practice and its limitations and appreciation of likely new development
  • develop problem solving skills
  • become competent users of relevant equipment and software
  • develop ability to think logically and critically
  • develop analytical, design and comprehension skills in various electrical engineering fields, providing a platform for further development in both industrial and academic research environments.

This course is based in Nottingham's University Park campus in the UK. Find out more about University Park campus or take a virtual tour.

 

Academic English preparation and support

If you need additional support to take your language skills to the required level, you may be able to attend a presessional course at the Centre for English Language Education, which is accredited by the British Council for the teaching of English in the UK.

Students who successfully complete the presessional course to the required level can progress to postgraduate study without retaking IELTS or equivalent.

A specialist engineering course is available and you could be eligible for a joint offer, which means you will only need to apply for your visa once.

 

 
 

Modules

Core modules

Electrical and Electronic Fundamentals for Masters (autumn): 10 credits
Summary Of Content: The module expands students lifelong learning skills by developing their proficiency in self- assessment of their knowledge. This will be achieved by asking students to identifying gaps in their knowledge in the core areas of electrical and electronic engineering, development and implementation of an improvement plan.

To supplement, the student self-learning, problem/project based learning will be used to reinforce the fundamental skills of an electrical and electronic engineer. These problems will be introduced in student led small group seminars where students will discuss the problem and discuss what background knowledge is required and suitable resources. A member of academic staff will aid the students identify appropriate learning material where students finds it difficult to do so. As part of the learning experience, students will keep a weekly online log detailing the learning activities undertaken, what they have learnt and the areas they still need to develop.

To provide formative feedback during this learning period, there will be 4 compulsory on-line tests. Although the mark attained is not used in the calculation of the module mark, failure, without good cause to complete 3 of the 4 tests within the given time window, will result in a zero module mark.

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Seminar 10 weeks 1 week 2 hours
Seminar 1 week 1 week 3 hours
Un Assign 4 weeks 1 week 1 hour

The formative progress tests will be on-line for completion within a 24 hour period.

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Coursework 1 25.00 Self Assessment/reflection and of additional learning requirements to complete the course.
Coursework 2 25.00  
Exam 1   2 hour on-line Formative Examination( Required to attend).
Exam 2 50.00 1 hour on-line examination.
 
Research Project Organisation and Design (spring): 10 credits

Summary Of Content

A project-oriented module involving a review of publications and views on a topic allied to the chosen specialist subject. The module will also involve organisation and design of the main project. Skills will be acquired through workshops and seminars that will include:

  • Further programming in MATLAB and /or MSExcel Macros
  • Project planning and use of Microsoft Project
  • Measurement and error analysis
  • Development of laboratory skills including safety & risk assessment

Students will select a further set of specialist seminars from, e.g.:

  • Meshing for computational engineering applications
  • Modelling using CAE packages
  • Use of CES Selector software
  • Specific laboratory familiarisation
  • Use of MSVisio software for process flow
  • Use of HYSYS process modelling software
  • Use of PSpice to simulate analogue and digital circuits

The specialist seminars will be organised within the individual MSc courses.

Taught Semesters: Spring UK 

Delivery: 3-hour seminars in 12 weeks 

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Coursework 1 40.00 2000 word literature review on a topic relevant to MSc programme.
Coursework 2   Formative health & safety risk assessment
Coursework 3 60.00 2000 word max planning report; topics to be specific to individual MSc courses and specialist training
 
MSc Project (full-year): 60 credits
Summary Of Content: In this module a student will be assigned to an individual supervisor who will be a staff member in the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering. The student will carry out a practical or theoretical project chosen from the current interests of the staff member concerned. The student will be expected to conduct a literature survey, undertake practical or theoretical work and write a dissertation on this work.

Method and Frequency of Class: The Project will take place at the end of the Spring semester and during the summer.

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Dissertation 80.00 Final Thesis 100 pages
Oral 10.00 Bench Inspection
Report 10.00 Interim Report
 

Optional modules

Power Networks (spring): 10 credits

Summary Of Content: This module provides students with an understanding of power system apparatus and their behaviour under normal and fault conditions. This module covers:

  • concept and analysis of load flow
  • voltage/current symmetrical components
  • computation of fault currents
  • economic optimisation
  • power-system control and stability
  • power system protection

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 11 weeks 1 week 2 hours
Practicum 11 weeks 1 week 1 hour
One 2-hour lecture per week. Students will spend time in the computing laboratory working on CAD problems.

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Coursework 1 25.00 25 hours of student time
Exam 1 75.00 2 hour exam
 
Electric Machines, Drives and their Applications (autumn): 20 credits

Summary Of Content: This module introduces students to the concepts and operating principles of fixed and variable speed electric machine and drive systems. The module will use a number of system examples to demonstrate how machines and drive systems are specified, designed, controlled and operated.

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 12 weeks 1 week 2 hours
Practicum 11 weeks 1 week 2 hours

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Coursework 1 25.00 25 hours of student time
Exam 1 75.00 2 hour exam
 
Power Electronic Applications and Control (spring): 20 credits

Summary Of Content: This module provides students with an understanding of the operational principles of power electronic converters and their associated systems and enables students to design both analogue and digital controllers for linear single-input single-output systems.

 Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 12 weeks 2 week 2 hours
Practicum 11 weeks 1 week 2 hours

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Coursework 1 25.00 25 hours of student time
Exam 1 75.00 2 hour exam
 
Power Networks with Laboratory (spring): 15 credits
Summary Of Content: This module provides students with an understanding of power system apparatus and their behaviour under normal and fault conditions. It also provides an opportunity to apply CAD techniques to power system problems. This module covers:
  • concept and analysis of load flow
  • voltage/current symmetrical components
  • computation of fault currents
  • economic optimisation
  • power-system control and stability
  • power system protection.

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 11 weeks 1 week 2 hours
Practicum 11 weeks 1 week 1 hour

One 2-hour lecture per week.  Students will spend time in the computing laboratory working on CAD problems.

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Coursework 1 13.00 6 reports each of about 4 pages in length
Coursework 2 33.00 15 page report
Exam 1 54.00 2 hour exam
 
Advanced Control System Design (autumn): 10 credits*

Summary Of Content: This module introduces the state-space representation of physical systems and the control design of multi-input multi-output systems using multivariable control techniques for both continuous and discrete implementation. The module then covers both the full and reduced observer design for those cases when state variables are not measurable. The module finishes with an overview of optimal control design.

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 11 weeks 1 week 2 hours

Three hours of lectures per week supplemented by printed notes and including example classes.

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Exam 1 100.00 2 hour exam
 
Instrumentation and Measurement (autumn): 10 credits*
Summary Of Content: This module is an introduction to the principles and practice of instrumentation and measurement systems in an engineering context. The module will cover the generally applicable basic principles and then look at specific classes of instrument and associated electronics and signal processing methods. Topics covered include:
  • Basic principles and instrument characteristics.
  • Measurement errors, basic statistics, noise and its control.
  • Dynamic characteristics of instruments, time and frequency domain responses.
  • System identification using correlation techniques.
  • Amplifiers, filters, ADCs and DACs.
  • Position, strain, pressure and motion sensors (resistive, capacitive, inductive, optical).
  • Flow sensors.
  • Electronic and optical measurement instrumentation.

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 11 weeks 1 week 2 hours

Two 1-hour lectures/examples per week.  Breakdown of hours: lectures/examples classes - 22 hours; revision and assessment - 53 hours.

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Exam 1 100.00 2 hour exam
 
Advanced AC Drives (spring): 10 credits*
Summary Of Content: This covers the control of AC drives. The first part of the module covers vector controlled induction motor drives and the second part covers permanent magnet motor drives. A review of induction machine operation and basic open-loop induction motor drives is given.

Vector control is covered in depth covering the concept of space vectors, dq representation of 3-phase machines, dynamic equation structure and the concepts of direct and indirect flux orientation. Implementation of Indirect Vector Control, including current flux and speed control is covered in some detail and includes the effect of incorrect parameters.

The second part introduces both AC and Brushless DC permanent magnet motor drives. The vector control concepts learned in the first part of the module are applied to AC PM machines. The concept of salient and non-salient AC PM machines are covered leading to the vector control using maximum torque per amp control strategies. Finally the field weakening control of both non-salient and salient PM machines are considered.

Method and Frequency of Class: 2-hour lecture per week, in 12 weeks.

Method of Assessment: one Exam (100%).

 
Advanced Electrical Machines (spring): 10 credits
Summary Of Content: This module will build on the material covered in “Electrical Machines” by introducing advanced concepts and applications in the area of more electric transport, renewable generation and industrial automation. Both theoretical and practical characteristics are covered. The module will cover :
  • Machine sizing considering power electronic, thermal and mechanical issues.
  • Magnetic materials including soft and hard materials and winding design.
  • FEA analysis of electrical machines, design tools and integration with power electronic and drive system modelling.
  • Operating Principle and basic design principles of different machine types and topologies including surface and buried permanent magnet radial machines, axial flux, reluctance, and induction machines.
  • High performance and be-spoke machines including high-speed motors and high-pole number direct drive motors.
  • Example designs of machines for More-Electric vehicles including traction and turbo-charging, More-Electric aircraft actuation, More-Electric ship propulsion, Servo Drives and Renewable Generators for wind turbines.

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 5 weeks 1 week 4 hours
Lecture 1 week 1 week 2 hours
Practicum 5 weeks 1 week 2 hours

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Coursework 1 15.00 15 hours of student time
Exam 1 85.00 2 hour exam
 
Advanced Power Conversion (spring): 10 credits
Summary Of Content: The course will concentrate on modelling and control of power converters covering the following aspects and will incorporate the most recent technical developments where appropriate:
  • Review of basic DC-DC converters
  • Averaging techniques for modelling switching power converters
  • Control techniques for the basic DC-DC converters (buck/ flyback) – voltage mode control/current mode control/effect of discontinuous inductor current
  • Resonant DC-DC power conversion techniques - load resonant converters
  • Modelling and analysis of load resonant converters - fundamental approximation approach.

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 6 weeks 1 week 4 hours

 

All teaching takes place in 5 off 4 hour blocks. Breakdown of hours: Tutor led - 20 hours; student directed - 40 hours; assessment/revision - 15 hours.

Method of Assessment: Exam 1 (100%) - 2 hours.

 
FACTS and Distributed Generation (spring): 10 credits
Summary Of Content: This module provides students with an understanding of power systems which include renewable energy generators. It investigates the operation of renewable energy generators at a systems level, including analysis of distributed generation systems. The module covers:
  • analysis of load flow in distributed generation systems
  • operation and control of microgrids
  • economic optimisation of renewable generators within a power system
  • distributed power system control and stability
  • Use of STATCOM devices
  • Flexible AC transmission systems (FACTS)
  • HVDC

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 12 weeks 1 week 2 hours

One 2-hour lecture per week.  Students will spend time in the computing laboratory working on CAD problems.

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Exam 1 100.00 2 hour exam
 
Advanced Control System Design with Project (autumn): 20 credits*

Summary Of Content: This module introduces the state-space representation of physical systems and the control design of multi-input multi-output systems using multi-variable control techniques for both continuous and discrete implementation. The module then covers both full and reduced observer design for those cases when state variables are not measurable. The module finishes with an overview of optimal control design. A more detailed design experience using advanced CAD will be acquired by means of a specialized coursework.

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Computing 7 weeks 1 week 1 hour
Lecture 11 weeks 1 week 2 hours

Three hours of lectures per week, supplemented by printed notes, example classes and project work supervision.

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Coursework 1 50.00 50 hours of student time
Exam 1 50.00 2 hour exam
 
Advanced AC Drives with Project (spring): 20 credits*
Summary Of Content: This module addresses the control of AC drives and consists of a lecture component (10 credits) and a design and assessment project (10 credits)

The lecture component covers vector controlled induction motor drives and permanent magnet motor drives. Vector control is covered in depth covering the concept of space vectors, dq representation of 3-phase machines, dynamic equation structure and the concepts of direct and indirect flux orientation. Implementation of Indirect Vector Control, including current flux and speed control is covered in some detail and includes the effect of incorrect parameters.

Both AC and Brushless DC permanent magnet motor drives are introduced. The vector control concepts learned for induction machines are applied to AC PM machines. The concept of salient and non-salient AC PM machines are covered leading to the vector control using maximum torque per amp control strategies. Finally the field weakening control of both non-salient and salient PM machines are considered.

The project component is a design and simulation exercise using MATLAB/Simulink. The student is required to design an indirect vector controlled induction motor drive, implement the design in Simulink, and undertake evaluative tests covering current and speed loop performance, including field weakening for high speed. The exercise covers investigating the effects of parameter variation and designing engineered solutions to reducing the sensitivity.

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 12 weeks 1 week 2 hours

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Coursework 1 50.00 50hrs of student work
Exam 1 50.00  
 
Instrumentation and Measurement with Project (autumn): 20 credits*
Summary Of Content: This module is an introduction to the principles and practice of instrumentation and measurement systems in an engineering context. The module will cover the generally applicable basic principles and then look at specific classes of instrument and associated electronics and signal processing methods. Topics covered include:
  • Basic principles and instrument characteristics.
  • Measurement errors, basic statistics, noise and its control.
  • Dynamic characteristics of instruments, time and frequency domain responses.
  • System identification using correlation techniques.
  • Amplifiers, filters, ADCs and DACs.
  • Position, strain, pressure and motion sensors (resistive, capacitive, inductive, optical).
  • Flow sensors (correlation, acoustic, electromagnetic, mechanical).
  • Electronic and optical measurement instrumentation.

The coursework will be in the form of a design or case study in a business context.

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 11 weeks 1 week 2 hours

Two 1-hour lectures/examples classes per week plus coursework.  Breakdown of    hours: lectures/example classes - 22 hours; student-directed project work - 75  hours; revision and assessment - 53 hours.

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Coursework 1 50.00 50 hours of student time
Exam 1 50.00 2 hour exam
 
Power Electronic Applications and Control (spring): 20 credits

Summary Of Content: This module provides students with an understanding of the operational principles of power electronic converters and their associated systems and enables students to design both analogue and digital controllers for linear single-input single-output systems.

 Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 12 weeks 2 week 2 hours
Practicum 11 weeks 1 week 2 hours

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Coursework 1 25.00 25 hours of student time
Exam 1 75.00 2 hour exam
 
Power Systems for Aerospace, Marine and Automotive Applications (spring): 10 credits

Summary Of Content: This module considers the design and operation of Power Systems in a range or transport related applications.

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 5 weeks 1 week 4 hours

All teaching takes place in 5 weeks, with a single 4 hour session per week, giving 20 hours of timetabled lectures and demonstrations. 

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Exam 1 100.00 1 hr 30 min exam
 
Technologies for Wind Generation (spring): 10 credits
Summary Of Content: This module provides students with an understanding of the technologies used in wind power systems. It investigates the operation of wind generators and of wind farms and the current developments in electrical engineering for wind power. The module covers:
  • overall design of wind turbines
  • analysis of doubly-fed induction generators
  • analysis of grid connection systems for wind turbines
  • vector control of generators
  • operation and control of wind farms
  • economic evaluation of wind generators within a power system
  • AC-DC transmission links for offshore wind farms

Method and Frequency of Class:

ActivityNumber of WeeksNumber of sessionsDuration of a session
Lecture 2 weeks 1 week 2 hours
Lecture 5 weeks 1 week 1 hour
Lecture 5 weeks 1 week 3 hours

Method of Assessment:

Assessment TypeWeightRequirements
Exam 1 100.00 2 hour exam
 

*These modules are available in two versions, one worth 10 credits, and another worth 20 credits, which includes a substantial piece of coursework.

Students who have taken any of the above modules as part of a previous course at the University of Nottingham cannot take modules again. If you have, you can consult with the Course Director who will select alternative modules to those studied previously.

The modules we offer are inspired by the research interests of our staff and as a result may change for reasons of, for example, research developments or legislation changes. This list is an example of typical modules we offer, not a definitive list.

 
 

Funding

See information on how to fund your masters, including our step-by-step guide.

Please visit the faculty website for information on any scholarships currently available through the faculty.

Faculty of Engineering Scholarships

UK/EU Students

Funding information can be found on the Graduate School website.

Please visit the faculty website for information on any scholarships currently available through the faculty. 

Government loans for masters courses

The Government offers postgraduate student loans for students studying a taught or research masters course. Applicants must ordinarily live in England or the EU. Student loans are also available for students from Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland.

International and EU students

Masters scholarships are available for international students from a wide variety of countries and areas of study. You must already have an offer to study at Nottingham to apply. Please note closing dates to ensure your course application is submitted in good time.

Information and advice on funding your degree, living costs and working while you study is available on our website, as well as country-specific resources.

 
 

Careers and professional development

Students of this course have entered into roles in design and development within major international companies or government agencies, obtained consultancy posts with leading contract consultant companies and moved into successful academic careers.

Average starting salary and career progression

In 2016, 94.2% of postgraduates in the faculty who were available for employment had secured work or further study within six months of graduation. The average starting salary was £31,959 with the highest being £100,000.

*Known destinations of full-time home higher degree postgraduates, 2015/16. Salaries are calculated based on those in full-time paid employment within the UK.

Career destinations for our graduates in the department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering include IT business analysts, systems designers, programmers, software development professionals and production technicians, as well as electrical engineers and engineering professionals.

Career Prospects and Employability

The University of Nottingham is consistently named as one of the most targeted universities by Britain’s leading graduate employers* and can offer you a head-start when it comes to your career.

Those who take up a postgraduate research opportunity with us will not only receive support in terms of close contact with supervisors and specific training related to your area of research, you will also benefit from dedicated careers advice from our Careers and Employability Service.

Our Careers and Employability Service offers a range of services including advice sessions, employer events, recruitment fairs and skills workshops – and once you have graduated, you will have access to the service for life.

* The Graduate Market 2013-2017, High Fliers Research.

Boost your earning potential

Which university courses boost graduate wages the most? Studying with us could help you to earn more.

  • We are second highest in the UK for female engineering graduate earnings, five years after graduation
  • We are second highest in the Midlands for male engineering graduate earnings, five years after graduation

(Source: Institute for Fiscal Studies data: www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-44413086)

 

 
 
 

Disclaimer
This online prospectus has been drafted in advance of the academic year to which it applies. Every effort has been made to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content) are likely to occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for the course where there has been an interval between you reading this website and applying.

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