Photovoltaics & Solar Energy Engineering

(Honours)
Contact us
+61 2 9385 7120
UAC Code: 
425200
GE
92
Assumed: 
HSC Maths Ext. 1 and Physics
Sem 2 entry: 
Yes
Oscar Wilkie

I loved presenting at the Asia-Pacific Solar Research Conference on my exploration into the profitability of renewable energy generators in the electricity market of the future.

Oscar Wilkie

What's it all about?

■  Simply put, photovoltaic engineering uses solar radiation to create electricity. It studies the manufacture and use of solar cells, which capture and convert light from the sun to create electricity that can power virtually anything electrical. As a renewable and sustainable energy source, solar stocks are unlimited and a vital industry for humanity's future.

What does it include?

■  The program includes courses in technology development, manufacturing, quality control, reliability, cell interconnection and encapsulation, policy development, life-cycle analysis, system design and more. To get you ready, you'll apply these skills through 60-days of approved industrial training.

Where will you work?

■  This program has been established in response to the rapid growth in the industry with an increased need for specialised photovoltaics engineers. You could work with the manufactures of solar cells, research organisations, system design and integration companies, energy utilities and communication companies. Your career could take you to a number of exciting places.

Dual degrees

■  Dual degrees are a great way of graduating with a wider breadth of knowledge, better preparing you for your future career. For more information, visit our dual degrees page to find one that suits your interests.

Sample Program Outlines*

Semester 1

Course code Course name Notes
ENGG1000 Engineering Design and Innovation A team project over a ten week period to solve a practical problem. The key skills developed include concept development, critical thinking and evaluation skills.
ENGG1811 Computing for Engineers ENGG1811 is the preferred computing course for the AERO, MANFBH, streams. This course is for engineering students to acquire computing skills for solving computational problems such as simulation, numerical methods, process control and information management.
COMP1911 Computing 1A This course is designed for non-computing majors who want a solid introduction to programming.
MATH1131 Maths 1A Students can enrol in either MATH1131 or MATH1141. MATH1141 covers the same topics as MATH1131 but in greater depth.
MATH1141 Higher Maths 1A MATH1141 covers the same topics as MATH1131 but in greater depth. Assumed knowledge: Student has achieved a combined HSC mark in Mathematics Extension 1 and 2 over 175.
PHYS1121 Physics 1A Assumed knowledge: HSC Physics and Mathematics Extension 1 or equivalent
PHYS1131 Higher Physics 1A Covers the same content as PHYS1121, however features more advanced assessment.

Semester 2

Course code Course name Notes
PHYS1221 Physics 1B This is the second physics course. If you did PHYS1121 in S1, you need to have scored a mark of at least 65 to do the higher course PHYS1231.
PHYS1231 Higher Physics 1B This course covers the same content as PHYS1221, with more challenging assessments. Prerequisite: PHYS1131 or PHYS1141 or a mark of 65 or above in PHYS1121.
MATH1231 Maths 1B Prerequisites for this course are MATH1131 or MATH1141. Students that are highly competent (mark >65) in mathematics may instead enrol in MATH1241.
MATH1241 Higher Maths 1B Students have the option to enrol in either MATH1231 or MATH1241. MATH1241 covers the same topics as MATH1231 but in greater depth. A minimum mark of 65 in MATH1131 or MATH1141 is required for enrolment in MATH1241 instead of MATH1231.
Read more 1st Year Engineering Elective Recommendations for each degree in link.
Read more 1st Year Engineering Elective Recommendations for each degree in link.

Semester 1

Course code Course name Notes
MATS1101 Engineering Materials and Chemistry The course is an introduction to organic chemistry and polymers. Choose one of the following options: MATS1101 followed by CEIC1001. CHEM1011 followed by CHEM1021 or CHEM1041. CHEM1031 followed by CHEM1041 or CHEM1021.
SOLA2051 Project in PV and SE 1 The first half of the year long group project gives PV students their first hands on experience with characterisation and module fabrication of solar cells.
SOLA2060 Introduction to Electronic Devices A course which teaches you the electrical engineering perspective on different electronic devices and their importance and uses.
MATH2019 Engineering Mathematics 2E Prerequisites: MATH1231 or MATH1241 or MATH1251. MATH2018 is an alternative. BE/BSc students taking the Mathematics Major need to replace MATH2019 with MATH2011 & MATH2121. Students undertaking the Physics Major are required to replace MATH2019 with MATH2069 & MATH2121.

Semester 2

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA2053 Sustainable and Renewable Energy Technologies Covers similar material to SOLA1070 but in more depth and in a higher level.
SOLA2052 Project in PV and SE 2 The second half of the project involves design and construction of power electronics required to make the best use of solar energy.
SOLA2540 Applied PV In this course you learn about photovaoltaic panels and system deisgn for solar systems.
MATH2089 Numerical Methods and Stats Prerequisite: MATH1231/41. For Dual Degrees with Physics, this course is a prerequisite for PHYS3112. BE/BSc students taking the Mathematics Major need to replace MATH2089 with MATH2301 & MATH2801. Offered all year round.

Semester 1

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA3507 Solar Cells This is a cornerstone course of PV. Solar cell design and operation is studied in detail. Prereqs: MMAN1300 and MATH2019.
Read more PV Strand Elective Strands available include areas such as computing, electronics, mathematics, mechanical engineering, civil engineering, physics, chemical engineering, and architecture. Follow link for full details.
Read more PV Strand Elective Strands available include areas such as computing, electronics, mathematics, mechanical engineering, civil engineering, physics, chemical engineering, and architecture. Follow link for full details.
Read more General Education Elective You can't select a General Education course from within your own faculty

Semester 2

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA3010 Low Energy Buildings and PV A course which focuses on sustainable and energy efficient design of buildings and houses. Prereq: SOLA2540
SOLA3020 PV Technology & Manufacturing A highly up-to-date course that covers current industry manufacturing processes for silicon solar cells.
Read more PV Strand Elective Strands available include areas such as computing, electronics, mathematics, mechanical engineering, civil engineering, physics, chemical engineering, and architecture. Follow link for full details.
Read more General Education Elective You can't select a General Education course from within your own faculty

Semester 1

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA4910 Thesis A Can be taken in S1 or S2 but must be taken before Thesis B. It is your year long research project of your choosing.
SOLA4012 Grid Connect PV Systems Teaches students the fundamentals and technical details of grid- connected PV system design and installation.
Read more Professional Elective Recommendations for each degree in link. Bioinformatics students must take level 4+ COMP Professional Electives.
Read more Professional Elective Recommendations for each degree in link. Bioinformatics students must take level 4+ COMP Professional Electives.

Semester 2

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA4911 Thesis B A continuation from Thesis A.
ELEC4122 Strategic Leadership and Ethics Students study theories of leadership, engineering ethics, principles and practice.
SOLA5054 PV Stand-Alone System Design & Installation Teaches students the fundamentals and technical details of standalone PV system design and installation.
Read more Professional Elective Recommendations for each degree in link. Bioinformatics students must take level 4+ COMP Professional Electives.

Semester 1

Course code Course name Notes
ENGG1000 Engineering Design and Innovation A team project over a ten week period to solve a practical problem. The key skills developed include concept development, critical thinking and evaluation skills.
ENGG1811 Computing for Engineers ENGG1811 is the preferred computing course for the AERO, MANFBH, streams. This course is for engineering students to acquire computing skills for solving computational problems such as simulation, numerical methods, process control and information management.
COMP1911 Computing 1A This course is designed for non-computing majors who want a solid introduction to programming.
MATH1131 Maths 1A Students can enrol in either MATH1131 or MATH1141. MATH1141 covers the same topics as MATH1131 but in greater depth.
MATH1141 Higher Maths 1A MATH1141 covers the same topics as MATH1131 but in greater depth. Assumed knowledge: Student has achieved a combined HSC mark in Mathematics Extension 1 and 2 over 175.
PHYS1121 Physics 1A Assumed knowledge: HSC Physics and Mathematics Extension 1 or equivalent
PHYS1131 Higher Physics 1A Covers the same content as PHYS1121, however features more advanced assessment.

Semester 2

Course code Course name Notes
PHYS1221 Physics 1B This is the second physics course. If you did PHYS1121 in S1, you need to have scored a mark of at least 65 to do the higher course PHYS1231.
PHYS1231 Higher Physics 1B This course covers the same content as PHYS1221, with more challenging assessments. Prerequisite: PHYS1131 or PHYS1141 or a mark of 65 or above in PHYS1121.
MATH1231 Maths 1B Prerequisites for this course are MATH1131 or MATH1141. Students that are highly competent (mark >65) in mathematics may instead enrol in MATH1241.
MATH1241 Higher Maths 1B Students have the option to enrol in either MATH1231 or MATH1241. MATH1241 covers the same topics as MATH1231 but in greater depth. A minimum mark of 65 in MATH1131 or MATH1141 is required for enrolment in MATH1241 instead of MATH1231.
Read more 1st Year Engineering Elective Recommendations for each degree in link.
Read more 1st Year Engineering Elective Recommendations for each degree in link.

Semester 1

Course code Course name Notes
MATS1101 Engineering Materials and Chemistry The course is an introduction to organic chemistry and polymers. Choose one of the following options: MATS1101 followed by CEIC1001. CHEM1011 followed by CHEM1021 or CHEM1041. CHEM1031 followed by CHEM1041 or CHEM1021.
SOLA2051 Project in PV and SE 1 The first half of the year long group project gives PV students their first hands on experience with characterisation and module fabrication of solar cells.
SOLA2060 Introduction to Electronic Devices A course which teaches you the electrical engineering perspective on different electronic devices and their importance and uses.
MATH2019 Engineering Mathematics 2E Prerequisites: MATH1231 or MATH1241 or MATH1251. MATH2018 is an alternative. BE/BSc students taking the Mathematics Major need to replace MATH2019 with MATH2011 & MATH2121. Students undertaking the Physics Major are required to replace MATH2019 with MATH2069 & MATH2121.

Semester 2

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA2052 Project in PV and SE 2 The second half of the project involves design and construction of power electronics required to make the best use of solar energy.
SOLA2540 Applied PV In this course you learn about photovaoltaic panels and system deisgn for solar systems.
ECON1101 Microeconomics 1 In order to understand the workings of markets and the economy, one has to take on an 'economic mindset'. This introductory course covers the fundamental principles that economists use to understand and analyse economic behaviour.
ACCT1501 Accounting & Financial Management 1A This unit should benefit students who wish to specialise in accounting, and will also be of value to students whose primary interest lies elsewhere in the field of business.

Semester 1

Course code Course name Notes
MATH2089 Numerical Methods and Stats Prerequisite: MATH1231/41. For Dual Degrees with Physics, this course is a prerequisite for PHYS3112. BE/BSc students taking the Mathematics Major need to replace MATH2089 with MATH2301 & MATH2801. Offered all year round.
Read more PV Strand Elective Strands available include areas such as computing, electronics, mathematics, mechanical engineering, civil engineering, physics, chemical engineering, and architecture. Follow link for full details.
Read more Commerce Stream Elective For UNSW Business Commerce Course information click the link
Read more Commerce Stream Elective For UNSW Business Commerce Course information click the link

Semester 2

Course code Course name Notes
MGMT1001 Managing Organisations and People
Read more Commerce Stream Elective For UNSW Business Commerce Course information click the link
SOLA2053 Sustainable and Renewable Energy Technologies Covers similar material to SOLA1070 but in more depth and in a higher level.
SOLA3020 PV Technology & Manufacturing A highly up-to-date course that covers current industry manufacturing processes for silicon solar cells.

Semester 1

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA4012 Grid Connect PV Systems Teaches students the fundamentals and technical details of grid- connected PV system design and installation.
SOLA3507 Solar Cells This is a cornerstone course of PV. Solar cell design and operation is studied in detail. Prereqs: MMAN1300 and MATH2019.
Read more Commerce Stream Elective For UNSW Business Commerce Course information click the link
Read more Commerce Stream Elective For UNSW Business Commerce Course information click the link

Semester 2

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA5054 PV Stand-Alone System Design & Installation Teaches students the fundamentals and technical details of standalone PV system design and installation.
Read more PV Strand Elective Strands available include areas such as computing, electronics, mathematics, mechanical engineering, civil engineering, physics, chemical engineering, and architecture. Follow link for full details.
Read more Commerce Stream Elective For UNSW Business Commerce Course information click the link
Read more Commerce Stream Elective For UNSW Business Commerce Course information click the link

Semester 1

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA4910 Thesis A Can be taken in S1 or S2 but must be taken before Thesis B. It is your year long research project of your choosing.
Read more Commerce Stream Elective For UNSW Business Commerce Course information click the link
Read more Professional Elective Recommendations for each degree in link. Bioinformatics students must take level 4+ COMP Professional Electives.
Read more Commerce Stream Elective For UNSW Business Commerce Course information click the link

Semester 2

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA4911 Thesis B A continuation from Thesis A.
ELEC4122 Strategic Leadership and Ethics Students study theories of leadership, engineering ethics, principles and practice.
Read more PV Strand Elective Strands available include areas such as computing, electronics, mathematics, mechanical engineering, civil engineering, physics, chemical engineering, and architecture. Follow link for full details.
SOLA3010 Low Energy Buildings and PV A course which focuses on sustainable and energy efficient design of buildings and houses. Prereq: SOLA2540

Semester 1

Course code Course name Notes
Read more Commerce Stream Elective For UNSW Business Commerce Course information click the link
Read more Commerce Stream Elective For UNSW Business Commerce Course information click the link
Read more Commerce Stream Elective For UNSW Business Commerce Course information click the link
Read more Commerce Stream Elective For UNSW Business Commerce Course information click the link

Semester 1

Course code Course name Notes
ENGG1000 Engineering Design and Innovation A team project over a ten week period to solve a practical problem. The key skills developed include concept development, critical thinking and evaluation skills.
ENGG1811 Computing for Engineers ENGG1811 is the preferred computing course for the AERO, MANFBH, streams. This course is for engineering students to acquire computing skills for solving computational problems such as simulation, numerical methods, process control and information management.
COMP1911 Computing 1A This course is designed for non-computing majors who want a solid introduction to programming.
MATH1131 Maths 1A Students can enrol in either MATH1131 or MATH1141. MATH1141 covers the same topics as MATH1131 but in greater depth.
MATH1141 Higher Maths 1A MATH1141 covers the same topics as MATH1131 but in greater depth. Assumed knowledge: Student has achieved a combined HSC mark in Mathematics Extension 1 and 2 over 175.
PHYS1121 Physics 1A Assumed knowledge: HSC Physics and Mathematics Extension 1 or equivalent
PHYS1131 Higher Physics 1A Covers the same content as PHYS1121, however features more advanced assessment.

Semester 2

Course code Course name Notes
PHYS1221 Physics 1B This is the second physics course. If you did PHYS1121 in S1, you need to have scored a mark of at least 65 to do the higher course PHYS1231.
PHYS1231 Higher Physics 1B This course covers the same content as PHYS1221, with more challenging assessments. Prerequisite: PHYS1131 or PHYS1141 or a mark of 65 or above in PHYS1121.
MATH1231 Maths 1B Prerequisites for this course are MATH1131 or MATH1141. Students that are highly competent (mark >65) in mathematics may instead enrol in MATH1241.
MATH1241 Higher Maths 1B Students have the option to enrol in either MATH1231 or MATH1241. MATH1241 covers the same topics as MATH1231 but in greater depth. A minimum mark of 65 in MATH1131 or MATH1141 is required for enrolment in MATH1241 instead of MATH1231.
Read more 1st Year Engineering Elective Recommendations for each degree in link.
Read more 1st Year Engineering Elective Recommendations for each degree in link.

Semester 1

Course code Course name Notes
MATS1101 Engineering Materials and Chemistry The course is an introduction to organic chemistry and polymers. Choose one of the following options: MATS1101 followed by CEIC1001. CHEM1011 followed by CHEM1021 or CHEM1041. CHEM1031 followed by CHEM1041 or CHEM1021.
SOLA2051 Project in PV and SE 1 The first half of the year long group project gives PV students their first hands on experience with characterisation and module fabrication of solar cells.
SOLA2060 Introduction to Electronic Devices A course which teaches you the electrical engineering perspective on different electronic devices and their importance and uses.
MATH2019 Engineering Mathematics 2E Prerequisites: MATH1231 or MATH1241 or MATH1251. MATH2018 is an alternative. BE/BSc students taking the Mathematics Major need to replace MATH2019 with MATH2011 & MATH2121. Students undertaking the Physics Major are required to replace MATH2019 with MATH2069 & MATH2121.

Semester 2

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA2052 Project in PV and SE 2 The second half of the project involves design and construction of power electronics required to make the best use of solar energy.
SOLA2540 Applied PV In this course you learn about photovaoltaic panels and system deisgn for solar systems.
SOLA2053 Sustainable and Renewable Energy Technologies Covers similar material to SOLA1070 but in more depth and in a higher level.
MATH2089 Numerical Methods and Stats Prerequisite: MATH1231/41. For Dual Degrees with Physics, this course is a prerequisite for PHYS3112. BE/BSc students taking the Mathematics Major need to replace MATH2089 with MATH2301 & MATH2801. Offered all year round.

Semester 1

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA3507 Solar Cells This is a cornerstone course of PV. Solar cell design and operation is studied in detail. Prereqs: MMAN1300 and MATH2019.
Read more PV Strand Elective Strands available include areas such as computing, electronics, mathematics, mechanical engineering, civil engineering, physics, chemical engineering, and architecture. Follow link for full details.
Read more PV Strand Elective Strands available include areas such as computing, electronics, mathematics, mechanical engineering, civil engineering, physics, chemical engineering, and architecture. Follow link for full details.
Read more Science Stream Elective Please read the UNSW handbook for further information on selecting courses

Semester 2

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA3010 Low Energy Buildings and PV A course which focuses on sustainable and energy efficient design of buildings and houses. Prereq: SOLA2540
SOLA3020 PV Technology & Manufacturing A highly up-to-date course that covers current industry manufacturing processes for silicon solar cells.
Read more PV Strand Elective Strands available include areas such as computing, electronics, mathematics, mechanical engineering, civil engineering, physics, chemical engineering, and architecture. Follow link for full details.
Read more Science Stream Elective Please read the UNSW handbook for further information on selecting courses

Semester 1

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA4012 Grid Connect PV Systems Teaches students the fundamentals and technical details of grid- connected PV system design and installation.
Read more Science Stream Elective #REF!
Read more Science Stream Elective Please read the UNSW handbook for further information on selecting courses
Read more Science Stream Elective Please read the UNSW handbook for further information on selecting courses

Semester 2

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA5054 PV Stand-Alone System Design & Installation Teaches students the fundamentals and technical details of standalone PV system design and installation.
Read more Professional Elective Recommendations for each degree in link. Bioinformatics students must take level 4+ COMP Professional Electives.
Read more Science Stream Elective Please read the UNSW handbook for further information on selecting courses
Read more Science Stream Elective Please read the UNSW handbook for further information on selecting courses

Semester 1

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA4910 Thesis A Can be taken in S1 or S2 but must be taken before Thesis B. It is your year long research project of your choosing.
Read more Science Stream Elective Please read the UNSW handbook for further information on selecting courses
Read more Science Stream Elective Please read the UNSW handbook for further information on selecting courses
Read more Science Stream Elective Please read the UNSW handbook for further information on selecting courses

Semester 2

Course code Course name Notes
SOLA4911 Thesis B A continuation from Thesis A.
ELEC4122 Strategic Leadership and Ethics Students study theories of leadership, engineering ethics, principles and practice.
Read more Science Stream Elective Please read the UNSW handbook for further information on selecting courses
Read more Science Stream Elective Please read the UNSW handbook for further information on selecting courses

* The programs outlined above are intended as a guide only. The Faculty of Engineering reserves the right to change any information herein without prior notice. Students should seek approval from their relevant Schools before using these guides.