Asee peer logo

Alternative Approach to Teaching Gas Turbine-based Power Cycles

Download Paper |


2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 14, 2015

Start Date

June 14, 2015

End Date

June 17, 2015





Conference Session

ECCD Applications in Energy and Thermodynamics

Tagged Division

Energy Conversion and Conservation

Page Count


Page Numbers

26.169.1 - 26.169.13



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Farshid Zabihian West Virginia University Inst. of Tech.

visit author page

Farshid Zabihian, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Mechanical Engineering
West Virginia University Institute of Technology

Ph.D., Mechanical Engineering,Ryerson University, 2011
M.S. Mechanical Engineering, Iran University of Science and Technology, 1998
B.S. Mechanical Engineering, Amir Kabir University of Technology, 1996

Authored or coauthored more than 70 papers in Journals and peer-reviewed conferences.

visit author page

Download Paper |


Alternative approach to teach gas turbine based power cyclesThis paper presents the new approach in teaching Applied Thermodynamics in general and gasturbine cycles in particular to undergraduate mechanical engineering students. Also, theintegration of a simulation and modeling software to teaching gas turbine based cycles ispresented.In this teaching methodology, unlike traditional methods, students are not just passive listeners.Before each session, students are assigned a section of the textbook. They must read theassigned section and come to class prepared. In the beginning of each class, there is a quizrelated to the assigned reading. Then, there is discussion on the questions in the quiz. Duringthis discussion, the concept related to the topic(s) of the day is reviewed. Depending on thetopic, there may be a numerical problem(s) that is attempted by the students and instructor.Finally, the class is concluded by a quiz related to the material covered in the class.Beside this alternative way of teaching, a commercial process modeling software is utilized todeepen student understanding of the gas turbine based cycles and evaluation of effects ofvarious parameters on the cycle performance. In this course, AspenPlus is used for this purpose.Students are first introduced to the software and learn how to work with it through several stepby step tutorials. Students developed several simple models and conduct sensitivity analysis andinterpreted the results through these examples. Then, they are ask to find various properties ofthe stream using the software and compare them with the values they found from theconventional thermodynamic tables. In this step students learn how to retrieve stream propertiesand how to validate them. Then, they develop a cycle composted of a compressor followed by agas turbine. In this stage, they learn how the define characteristics and specifications ofcomponents in the model. Also, they experience the influences of these specifications on theperformance of the equipments. As a next step, they add a combustion chamber to the model tomake a complete model of a sample gas turbine cycle. As a part of this step they calculate thenet output power, specific work, and efficiency of the cycle. They utilize this model to evaluateeffects of the compressor pressure ratio, turbine inlet temperature, ambient temperature andpressure, efficiency of compressor and turbine, and pressure drop in the combustion chamber onthe system overall performance parameters including output power, specific work, andefficiency of the cycle. Eventually some students work on this model and combined it with othercycles to make a hybrid cycles.This alternative approach to teaching gas turbine based power engines to undergraduate studentsseem to be effective and engaging.

Zabihian, F. (2015, June), Alternative Approach to Teaching Gas Turbine-based Power Cycles Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.23508

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2015 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015