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Power Generation

Course Number: RET 223
Transcript Title: Power Generation
Created: March 15, 2012
Updated: September 25, 2013
Total Credits: 5
Lecture Hours: 40
Lecture / Lab Hours: 0
Lab Hours: 30
Satisfies Cultural Literacy requirement: No
Satisfies General Education requirement: No
Grading options: A-F (default), P-NP, audit


RET 122

Course Description

Focus is on developing and managing power generating facilities. Read and analyze topographic and wind maps. Become familiar with radio frequency and fiber optic communications systems. Review nondestructive materials testing, networking and basic meteorological forecasting. Prerequisites: RET 122.

Intended Outcomes

Upon finishing this course, students will:

  1. Be able to read and analyze topographic and wind maps with the goal of assessing the viability of developing power generation facilities on newly acquired land.
  2. Be able to forecast local weather on a short-term basis to determine if upcoming changes in the
  3. Weather pose a safety hazard for working in the field.
  4. Be prepared to complete all office work relating to the power generation field, including maintaining parts inventories, placing work orders, writing reports, and other administrative and/or managerial tasks.
  5. Be prepared to work safely, both alone and within a team, on power generation tasks.

Outcome Assessment Strategies

Evaluation is done by midterm and final exams, quality of lab work and of a term project.

Texts and Materials

Industrial Maintenance:

  • Green, Denis and Gosse, Jonathan F., 2006, Industrial Maintenance, 2nd E. American Technical Publishers, Inc., Homewood, IL.

Programmable Logic Controllers:

  • Rabiee, Max, 2002, Programmable Logic Controllers: Hardware and Programming. The Goodheart-Wilcox Company, Inc., Tinley Park, Il.
  • Dunning, Gary, 1998, Introduction to Programmable Logic Controllers. Delmar Publishers, San Francisco, CA.
  • Stenerson, Jon, 2004, Fundamentals of Programmable Logic, Controllers, Sensors, and Communications, 3rd Ed. Pearson Prentice Hall, Columbus, OH.


  • Mounting and Dismounting of Rolling Bearings. FAG Bearings Sales Corp./FAG Bearings Limited, Publ. No. WL 80 100/3 EC/ED, 2004.
  • Rolling Bearing Damage: Recognition of damage and bearing inspection. Publ. No. WL 82 102/2 EA, 2003.
  • Rolling Bearing Lubrication. FAG Kügelfischer Georg Schäfer AG, Publ. No. WL 81 115/4 EA, 2002.


  • Elahi, Ata, 2001, Network Communications Technology. Delmar Thomson Learning, Albany, NY.
  • Roberts, Richard M., 2005, Networking Fundamentals. Goodheart-Willcox Company, Inc., Tinley Park, Il.
  • Sterling, Donald J., Jr., and Wissler, Steven P., 2003, The Industrial Ethernet Networking Guide. Delmar Thomson Learning, Clifton Park, NY.

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

  • How to read and analyze topographic maps.
    • Identifying ravines, mountain ridges, gullies, cliffs, flatlands, and bodies of water.
  • How to read and analyze wind maps.
  • How to make reasonable decisions concerning wind farm development on promising areas of land, including citing concerns if and when necessary.
  • How to make short-term weather forecasts with the goal of maintaining worker and equipment safety if bad weather approaches (such as electrical and thunderstorms, squall lines, high winds, etc.).
  • How to make reports and other word-processed documents using MS Word.
  • How to create and manipulate spreadsheets using MS Excel.
  • How to create, maintain, and manipulate relational databases using MS Access.
  • Techniques used in and logistics of cranes and rigging in wind turbine construction.
  • Non-destructive materials testing:
    • Ultrasound and scanning electron microscope (SEM):
      • Theory of operation:
        • SEM:
          • Magnetic focusing of electron beam.
          • Secondary electron imaging.
          • Back-scattered electron imaging.
        • Sound beam:
          • Convergent
          • Near-field
          • Far-field
          • Divergence angle
          • Acoustic axis
        • Testing methods
    • Identification of reflectors, discontinuities, and other imperfections and impurities.
    • Pulse echo method:
      • Speed of sound in materials.
      • Longitudinal acoustical waves.
      • Oscilloscope display: initial and reflected pulse.
      • Using the intermediate echo to detect flaws.
        • Location of discontinuity.
        • Near, far, and dead zones.
    • Types of probes:
      • Transverse/shear waves.
      • Angle beam probes: angle of incidence, angle of reflection, refraction, sound velocity, and critical angles.
    • Problem-solving methods
    • Failure analysis
    • DGS and DAC methods
    • Document test results
    • Overview of data interpretation (diagnosis).
  • Fiber optic and cat-5 networking.
  • Sensors

Topic Addenda:

  • Haz-Mat handling, storage, and use
  • Site environmental, wildlife, and cultural issues
  • Vehicle safety and maintenance
  • Site safety
  • Fall protection
  • Road maintenance
  • Weed control
  • CMMS - maintenance management
  • Preventive and predictive maintenance