Asee peer logo

Development and Implementation of a Power and Energy Engineering Minor with Limited Resources: First Results and Lessons Learned

Download Paper |


2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 23, 2018

Start Date

June 23, 2018

End Date

July 27, 2018

Conference Session

Energy Conversion and Conservation Division Technical Session on Conservation and Optimization

Tagged Division

Energy Conversion and Conservation

Page Count


Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Radian G. Belu Southern University and A&M College

visit author page

Dr. Radian Belu is Associate Professor within Electrical Engineering Department, Southern University, Baton, Rouge, USA. He is holding one PHD in power engineering and other one in physics. Before joining to Southern University Dr. Belu hold faculty, research and industry positions at universities and research institutes in Romania, Canada and United States. He also worked for several years in industry as project manager, senior engineer and consultant. He has taught and developed undergraduate and graduate courses in power electronics, power systems, renewable energy, smart grids, control, electric machines, instrumentation, radar and remote sensing, numerical methods, space and atmosphere physics, and applied physics. His research interests included power system stability, control and protection, renewable energy system analysis, assessment and design, smart microgrids, power electronics and electric machines for non-conventional energy conversion, remote sensing, wave and turbulence, numerical modeling, electromagnetic compatibility and engineering education. During his career Dr. Belu published ten book chapters, several papers in referred journals and in conference proceedings in his areas of the research interests. He has also been PI or Co-PI for various research projects United States and abroad in power systems analysis and protection, load and energy demand forecasting, renewable energy, microgrids, wave and turbulence, radar and remote sensing, instrumentation, atmosphere physics, electromagnetic compatibility, and engineering education.

visit author page


Lucian Ionel Cioca Lucian Blaga University of Sibiu

visit author page

Lucian Ionel CIOCA received the M.Sc. in Machine Tools (1993) and B.Sc. in Occupational Safety, Health and Work Relations Management (2010). In 2002, he becomes Dr. Eng. (Ph.D degree) of Petrosani University, Romania and now he is professor at "Lucian Blaga" University of Sibiu - Romania, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Engineering and Management, Romania. His teaching subjects are Ergonomics, Management, Human Resources Management, Occupational Health and Safety Management, Production Systems Engineering. His research fields of interest are linked with the impact of the knowledge based society upon the social / human dynamics / evolution and the production systems. He regularly publishes and participates on international scientific conferences. Lucian Cioca is the Administrator of the LBUS Department of Consulting, Training and Lifelong Learning, Doctoral Advisor in Engineering and Management, Member of the National Council for Attestation of Academic Titles, Diplomas and Certificates, evaluator ARACIS (The Romanian Agency for Quality Assurance in Higher Education), and other (email: lucian.cioca@ulbsibiu).

visit author page


Richard Chiou Drexel University

visit author page

Dr. Richard Chiou is Associate Professor within the Engineering Technology Department at Drexel University, Philadelphia, USA. He received his Ph.D. degree in the G.W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology. His educational background is in manufacturing with an emphasis on mechatronics. In addition to his many years of industrial experience, he has taught many different engineering and technology courses at undergraduate and graduate levels. His tremendous research experience in manufacturing includes environmentally conscious manufacturing, Internet based robotics, and Web based quality. In the past years, he has been involved in sustainable manufacturing for maximizing energy and material recovery while minimizing environmental impact.

visit author page

Download Paper |


The last two decades has witnessed significant advances in the power system technology, such as the smart grid advent or the increased renewable energy generation. This technological boom has increased the proper-trained engineering graduate demands, requiring the revitalization of the power and energy courses, offering courses in power engineering, power electronics and renewable energy, or innovative curricula developments to educate students or professionals working in these rapidly evolving industries. At the end of 2016, I accepted a new faculty position, being charged with revitalizing the power engineering program. Major challenges of this project included: appropriate course materials, content, textbooks, developing new learning materials and laboratory experiments, inclusion or not of projects, limited financial resources, and finally inadequate laboratory equipment and space. Facing these challenges, a three-step development and implementation approach was decided upon, consisting of: 1) upgrading and updating existing power engineering courses, through new course materials that still meet the objectives of the original courses; 2) developing upper division elective courses that address specific topics, such as: Power Electronics, Power Distribution, Smart Grids, Industrial Energy Systems, Energy Management and Renewable Energy Systems; and 3) restructuring, upgrading and expanding the electric machines laboratory, as an integrated modular laboratory facility for energy conversion, electric machines, power electronics, power systems and renewable energy. The proposed new courses was approved and strongly supported at department and college levels. To overcome the lack of proper equipment and foster student enthusiasm, a project-based approach, together with the extensive use of available or free open-source power system software packages was also adopted. The next phase of the project consists of submitting proposals to the state and federal funding agencies, and trying to get financial support from the local and regional energy industry. In this paper, we are discussing lessons learned during the first project phases along with challenges and unique approaches that were taken, as well as the future activities.

Belu, R. G., & Cioca, L. I., & Chiou, R. (2018, June), Development and Implementation of a Power and Energy Engineering Minor with Limited Resources: First Results and Lessons Learned Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah.

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: © 2018 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