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Overview

Overview

"When the sun is shining and the wind blowing, the price of electricity is at rock bottom," states a RWTH engineer succinctly. Electricity is a special type of commodity: it has to be produced the minute it's needed. This moment determines the amount and price.The fluctuation in the amount of energy and market value poses not only technical but also economic challenges to the energy sector. Energy prices perpetually change but must be kept stable for users. At the time same time electricity providers want to make a profit and successfully perform in the international market. Additionally, political objectives – like the energy transition – must be accompanied and implemented by professionals.

A broadly based field of work is open to industrial engineers. In this field between technology, economics, and politics. Their training contains both technical and business and economic components and provides them with the necessary interdisciplinary skills.

At RWTH the business administration and engineering course of study focuses on technical skills in engineering right from the beginning.

Starting in the fifth semester students can begin to specialize in a technical concentration. Students select two of four electives, gaining an initial look of energy technology in Aachen:

  • Power Electronics - Fundamentals, Topologies and Analysis deals with questions regarding the efficient control and transformation of electrical energy with the help of electronic power switches, for example in the automotive branch, in wind power stations, solar and fuel cells, battery systems, or industrial engines.
  • The Elective Section planning and operation of electricity supply systems is occupied with methods of grid planning and operative systems operation, for example with the profitability calculation of power plants and electric grids, as well as ensuring supply reliability.
  • The Elective Section High and medium voltage switchgears and facilities focuses on switchgear and plant technology, from physical fundamentals to economic aspects.
  • Electricity supply components and facilities considers and evaluates the function and interaction of components and facilities for electrical power supply. Focus is placed on the entire process chain – from creation to transmission to distribution and then to application.

Programme Structure

In the first four semesters all students acquire technical, business, and economic skills. The challenging focus on fundamental subjects and mathematics particularly provides them with the understanding necessary for technical principles, structural concepts, and complex processes. A twelve-week industrial internship in the sixth semester offers an initial look at possible fields of application.

Curriculum

Semester Engineering Sciences Mathematics, Natural Sciences Business Administration and Economics
1. Introduction to Circuit Analysis Advanced Mathematics I, Fundamentals of Computer Science Introduction to Business Administration, Internal Accounting and Bookkeeping
2. Electrical Systems Modeling and Analysis Advanced Mathematics II, Physics Quantitative Methods (Operations Research), Sales and Purchasing
3. Signals and Systems Advanced Mathematics III Decision Making, Production and Logistics, Microeconomics
4. Introduction to Electromagnetic Fields,
Systems Theory, Computer Science Practical I
Statistics for Industrial Engineers Macroeconomics, Elective Module
5. Electrical supply systems, Computer Science Practical II, Electives   Human Resources and Management, Investment and Financing, Introduction to Empirical Economic Research
6. Bachelor's thesis, Industrial internship

Entry Requirement

  • Abitur or equivalent HZB
  • Proficiency in German

Career Prospects

 

Because the supply of affordable and sustainably produced energy is relevant worldwide, industrial engineers have good prospects in the job market both nationally and internationally. They can work, for example, in the management of companies active in energy, supply, automotive, and environmental engineering. Due to their ability to simultaneously take economic and technical aspects into consideration, they typically work in operations management, project planning, trading, or businss communications.

RWTH graduates possess excellent technical training, which allows them to also find employment in purely technical fields of work. Later on many graduates pursue consulting or assessment responsibilities.

 


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