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CHNG2805: Engineering for a Sustainable Society (2018 - Semester 2)

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Unit: CHNG2805: Engineering for a Sustainable Society (6 CP)
Mode: Normal-Day
On Offer: Yes
Level: Intermediate
Faculty/School: School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
Unit Coordinator/s: Professor Vassallo, Tony
Session options: Semester 2
Versions for this Unit:
Campus: Camperdown/Darlington
Pre-Requisites: CHNG1103.
Brief Handbook Description: This course involves the study of the fundamental concepts which underpin sustainable development, including technical and economic efficiency, environmental stewardship and social responsibility.

The course examines both the material and non-material economies from an engineering perspective. Tools such as life-cycle assessment, input-output analysis and multi-criteria decision analysis are examined and implications for resource and energy consumption, pollution and waste generation are analysed.

A number of governing sustainability frameworks are discussed to determine their suitability within the context of chemical and biomolecular engineering. A range of approaches and tools for determining the environmental impact of human activities on small and large scale are introduced as part of a sustainability framework. Energy production and use, and product design are investigated from a sustainability perspective.
Assumed Knowledge: Mass and energy balances, physical chemistry, physics.
Lecturer/s: Professor Vassallo, Tony
Tutor/s: TBA
Timetable: CHNG2805 Timetable
Time Commitment:
# Activity Name Hours per Week Sessions per Week Weeks per Semester
1 Lecture 2.00 1 13
2 Tutorial 2.00 1 13
3 Independent Study 6.00 13
T&L Activities: Independent Study: Projects and self directed learning. Students are expected to spend about 5-8 hours of ‘self-learning’ outside the specified contact periods.

Attributes listed here represent the key course goals (see Course Map tab) designated for this unit. The list below describes how these attributes are developed through practice in the unit. See Learning Outcomes and Assessment tabs for details of how these attributes are assessed.

Attribute Development Method Attribute Developed
Researching sustainability topics for tutorial exercises and projects. Broad-Based Inquiry & Research (Level 2)
Writing project reports Professsional Communication (Level 2)
Group work in tutorial exercises and projects. Creative Team Culture (Level 2)

For explanation of attributes and levels see CBE Learning Outcomes Progression Framework.

Learning outcomes are the key abilities and knowledge that will be assessed in this unit. They are listed according to the course goal supported by each. See Assessment Tab for details how each outcome is assessed.

Sustainability, Safety & Risk (Core Chemical Engineering Part 4) (Level 2)
1. Quantifying the environmental performance of industry (with specific reference to the resource and processing sectors) using appropriate tools
2. Understanding the trade-offs in decisions which impact on sustainability
3. Understanding the thermodynamic basis of the material economy in terms of resource consumption and waste generation
4. Being effective communicators of sustainability arguments to all stakeholders, and interpreters of social and environmental concerns in ways which can help shape industry practice
5. Understanding the philosophical, social and political bases for sustainability, in addition to the technical, economic and environmental ones
6. Understanding the role of technology in promoting sustainability
7. Understanding corporate responsibilities with respect to sustainability
8. Interrogating governing frameworks for sustainability to support actions within industry
Assessment Methods:
# Name Group Weight Due Week Outcomes
1 Tutorial Performance Yes 15.00 Multiple Weeks 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8,
2 Project Yes 25.00 Multiple Weeks 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8,
3 Quiz No 10.00 Multiple Weeks 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8,
4 Final exam No 50.00 Exam Period 1, 2, 3, 6, 8,
Assessment Description: Attendance: Satisfactory tutorial perfomance

Project: 3 discrete projects which link to the lecture topics

Quiz: short T/F quizzes at start of each lecture based on previous week lecture(s) and tutorials
Grade Type Description
Standards Based Assessment Final grades in this unit are awarded at levels of HD for High Distinction, DI (previously D) for Distinction, CR for Credit, PS (previously P) for Pass and FA (previously F) for Fail as defined by University of Sydney Assessment Policy. Details of the Assessment Policy are available on the Policies website at . Standards for grades in individual assessment tasks and the summative method for obtaining a final mark in the unit will be set out in a marking guide supplied by the unit coordinator.
Policies & Procedures: See the policies page of the faculty website at for information regarding university policies and local provisions and procedures within the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technologies.
Recommended Reference/s: Note: References are provided for guidance purposes only. Students are advised to consult these books in the university library. Purchase is not required.

Note that the "Weeks" referred to in this Schedule are those of the official university semester calendar

Week Description
Week 1 Sustainability Concepts: Fundamentals, Industrial Systems, the Australian Status Quo
Week 2 Frameworks: The Natural Step, Precautionary Principle, Industrial Ecology and Dematerialisation
Week 3 Frameworks: Life Cycle Thinking; Indicators, what are they and what do they mean?
Week 4 Tools: Life Cycle Assessment
Week 5 Tools: Other Assessment tools
Week 6 Design for Environment: Process Synthesis and Analysis tools
Week 7 Design for Environment: An Hierarchical Approach
Week 8 Waste Minimisation and Cleaner Production
Week 9 Environmental Assessment of Chemicals
Week 10 Waste Management Technologies
Week 11 Green Chemistry
Week 12 None
Week 13 Course review
Exam Period Assessment Due: Final exam

Course Relations

The following is a list of courses which have added this Unit to their structure.

Course Year(s) Offered
Biomedical - Chemical and Biomolecular Major 2013, 2014, 2015
Chemical & Biomolecular (till 2014) 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering / Arts 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering / Commerce 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering / Medical Science 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering / Science 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering / Law 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering / Project Management 2012, 2013, 2014
Chemical & Biomolecular 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Chemical & Biomolecular / Arts 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Chemical & Biomolecular / Commerce 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Chemical & Biomolecular / Medical Science 2015, 2016, 2017
Chemical & Biomolecular / Music Studies 2016, 2017
Chemical & Biomolecular / Project Management 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Chemical & Biomolecular / Science 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Chemical & Biomolecular/Science (Health) 2018
Chemical & Biomolecular / Law 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Chemical & Biomolecular Mid-Year 2016, 2017, 2018
Chemical & Biomolecular/Science (Medical Science Stream) 2018
Biomedical Mid-Year 2016, 2017, 2018
Biomedical 2016, 2017, 2018
Biomedical with Chemical Major 2018, 2019
Biomedical with Mechanical major 2018, 2019

Course Goals

This unit contributes to the achievement of the following course goals:

Attribute Practiced Assessed
Sustainability, Safety & Risk (Core Chemical Engineering Part 4) (Level 2) No 100%
Problem Identification and Analysis (Level 2) No 0%
Solution Development and Testing (Level 2) No 0%
Broad-Based Inquiry & Research (Level 2) Yes 0%
Professsional Communication (Level 2) Yes 0%
Creative Team Culture (Level 2) Yes 0%

These goals are selected from CBE Learning Outcomes Progression Framework which defines overall goals for courses where this unit is primarily offered. See CBE Learning Outcomes Progression Framework for details of the attributes and levels to be developed in the course as a whole. Percentage figures alongside each course goal provide a rough indication of their relative weighting in assessment for this unit. Note that not all goals are necessarily part of assessment. Some may be more about practice activity. See Learning outcomes for details of what is assessed in relation to each goal and Assessment for details of how the outcome is assessed. See Attributes for details of practice provided for each goal.