MS4410 Advanced Energy Materials

As the Navy moves toward ‘all electric ships' engineers will be responsible for dramatic changes in key electric systems. Officers responsible for designing and/or selecting electric systems for novel weapons to drive trains will need a thorough grounding in fundamentals in order to fully understand newly developed options and possible problems. The course provides the physics and engineering essentials of capacitors, batteries and fuel cells. For capacitors, topics include electric fields, voltage, Gauss's Law, the development of the fundamental equations for capacitors, equivalent circuits. Batteries are treated as electrical systems that convert the free energy change of reaction into electrical energy. The first fundamental topic is a review of the first and second laws of thermodynamics, leading to the concept of free energy. The students are introduced to both modern (e.g. Li ion) and classic (e.g. Pb acid) battery systems. The effect of phase change, temperature, dilution, etc. on actual energy delivered is explored. Fuel cells are introduced as devices that act primarily like batteries that is they convert chemical energy into electrical energy, but with independent fuel supplies. Energy analysis of pertinent Navy-relevant examples are developed, such as the energy and power requirements of rail guns, E-mals and laser systems.


MS3202 or by consent of instructor

Lecture Hours


Lab Hours


Quarter Offered

  • As Required