Last Updated S012020


Unit Code MME504
Unit Duration 1 Term (online) or 1 Semester (on-campus)

Graduate Diploma of Engineering (Mechanical)
Duration: 1 year

Master of Engineering (Mechanical)
Duration: 2 years

Year Level 1st
Unit Creator / Reviewer Andrew Stuart and Dr Arti Siddhpura
Core/Elective: Core
Pre/Co-requisites None
Credit Points


Grad Dip total course credit points = 24
(3 credits x 8 (units))

Masters total course credit points = 48
(12 credits (Thesis) + 3 credits x 12 (units))

Mode of Delivery Online or on-campus. 
Unit Workload

10 hours per week:

Lecture - 1 hour

Tutorial Lecture - 1 hours

Practical / Lab - 1 hour (where applicable)

Personal Study recommended - 7 hours (guided and unguided)

Unit Description and General Aims

Pumps, compressors and turbines are essential components in various sectors of industry.  They are used in the oil and gas industry, mining and minerals processing industry, steel making, alumina, petrochemicals, pharmaceuticals and chemical industries in addition to water and effluent, manufacturing and power generation.  Pumps, compressors and turbines are some of the most common pieces of equipment in any facility and therefore engineers must have a sound knowledge of what they are, what they are used for, how to calculate the process conditions, performance and efficiencies and define the various applications and systems they are employed in.

This unit will introduce the common types of pumps, compressors and turbines as well as the drives required to power and control these components.  The unit will also include the analysis, calculations and application of these pumps, compressors and turbines and the types used for various applications. The unit will allow students to identify and specify the design, type, size, capacity and control method for pumps, compressors and turbines.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this Unit, students are expected to be able to:

  1. Make judgment about the function of pumps, compressors, turbines and drives
    • Bloom’s Level 5
  2. Determine best practice on necessary calculations in order to select the applications of pumps, compressors, turbines and their associated drives
    • Bloom’s Level 5
  3. Evaluate and make Difference between types of pumps, compressors, turbines and drives
    • Bloom’s Level 6
  4. Optimize some of the applicable codes and standards appertaining to pumps, compressors and turbines
    • Bloom’s Level 5
  5. Compile the economic factors in selecting various types and sizes of pumps, compressors, turbines and drives and the impact on CAPEX and OPEX costs
    • Bloom’s Level 6
  6. Synthesis on the future design and applications of pumps, compressors, turbines and drives
    • Bloom’s Level 6

Student assessment

Assessment Type (e.g. Assignment - 2000 word essay (specify topic) Examination (specify length and format)) When assessed (e.g. Week 5) Weighting (% of total unit marks) Learning Outcomes Assessed

Assessment 1

Type: Multiple-choice Quiz (Invigilated) 

Topic: Fundamental concepts of pump and compressor type selection, design and applications. Up to topic 5.


Topic 5
15% 1, 2, 3

Assessment 2

Type:  Test (Invigilated)

Example: Short/Long answers and Problems to solve

Topic: Up to topic 9.


Topic 9
25% 2, 3, 4, 5

Assessment 3

Type: Practical assessment, Remote labs, Simulation software or Case studies. (Report)

Example: Identify an application, produce design criteria and design a gas compressor, drive system and prime mover for a major plant installation.


Topic 11

20%  3, 5

Assessment 4

Type:  Research (Report)
[If a continuation of the midterm, this should complete the report by adding sections on: methodology, implementation / evaluation, verification / validation, conclusion / challenges and recommendations / future work. If this is a new report, all headings from the midterm and the final reports must be included.]
Word length: 4000

Topic: Nominate a process plant facility type (Power plant, chemical plant, manufacturing plant etc.) and generic location and then select applicable pump, compressor and drive types that would be relevant to that facility. Explain the reasons for the selections.


Topic 12
35% 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

Attendance / Tutorial Participation

Example: Presentation, discussion, group work, exercises, self-assessment/reflection, case study analysis, application.

Continuous 5% 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

Prescribed and Recommended readings

Required textbook(s)

  1. Incompressible Flow Turbomachines: Design, Selection, Applications, and Theory by Round, G F
  2. Centrifugal Pump Handbook (3rd Edition) 2010 by Sulzer Pumps (Available for free on Knovel)
  3. Compressor Handbook - Principles and Practice, 2010, Tony Giampaolo, Fairmont Press, Inc (Available for free on Knovel)

Reference Materials

Number of peer-reviewed journals and websites (advised during lectures). Some examples are listed below.

  • Incompressible Flow Turbomachines: Design, Selection, Applications, and Theory by Round, G F
  • Fluid Machinery: Application, Selection, and Design (Second Edition), 2009,  Wright, Terry and  Gerhart , Philip
  • Centrifugal Pump Handbook (3rd Edition) 2010 by Sulzer Pumps
  • Compressor Handbook - Principles and Practice, 2010, Tony Giampaolo, Fairmont Press, Inc
  • Principles of Centrifugal Process Pumps by Heinz P. Bloch
  • Process Piping Design Handbook, Volume 2 - Advanced Piping Design
  • Pump Handbook (Fourth Edition), 2007, Karassik, I. J. , Messina, J. P. et al. 
  • Compressors: Selection and Sizing by Royce N. Brown
  • Process Pump Selection: A Systems Approach by John Davidson, Otto von Bertele
  • Pump characteristics and applications by Michael Volk
  • Predictive Maintenance of Pumps Using Condition Monitoring by Raymond Beebe
  • Forsthoffer’s Best Practice Handbook for Rotating Machinery, 2011, W.E. Forsthoffer
  • Variable Speed Drive Fundamentals (3rd Edition), 1999, Clarence A. Phipps, Fairmont Press, Inc.
  • API 617 Axial and Centrifugal Compressors and Expander-compressors
  • API 618 Reciprocating Compressors for Petroleum, Chemical, and Gas Industry Services
  • API 619 Rotary-Type Positive-Displacement Compressors for Petroleum, Petrochemical, and Natural Gas Industries
  • API 616 Gas Turbines for the Petroleum, Chemical, and Gas Industry Services
  • Wilson, A. (2016). The pump industry - past, present and future: BPMA: 75th anniversary. World Pumps, 2016(2), 36-38. doi:

Unit Content

Topic 1

Historical background and present state of development

  1. Greek and Roman Machines
  2. The Middle
  3. The Renaissance
  4. The Post Renaissance
  5. The Nineteenth Century to the Present
  6. General Classification of turbomachines
  7. Theoretical Limitations

Topic 2 

Theory of turbomachines

  1. Thermodynamics and Fluid Mechanics
  2. Units and Nomenclature
  3. Equations of Fluid Mechanics
  4. Turbomachines
  5. Turbomachine Performance and Rating
  6. Rating and Performance For Liquid Pumps
  7. Compressible Flow Machines
  8. Typical Performance Curves
  9. Machine and System
  10. Dimensionality
  11. Similitude
  12. Dimensionless Numbers and Π-Products
  13. Dimensionless Performance Variables and Similarity for Turbomachinery
  14. Compressible Flow Similarity
  15. Specific Speed and Specific Diameter
  16. Correlations of Machine Type and the Cordier Diagram

Topic 3

Pump classification and applications

  1. Pump Classification
  2. Pump Applications including:
    • Water Supply, Sewage Treatment, Drainage and Irrigation, Fire Pumps and Water Pressure Booster Systems
    • Chemical Industry, Oil Wells, Petroleum Industry, Pulp and Paper Mills and Food and Beverage Pumping, Metering, Solids Pumping, Hydraulic Presses
    • Mining
    • Marine Pumps
    • Refrigeration, Heating, and Air Conditioning
    • Nuclear and Steam Power Plants
    • Cryogenic Liquefied Gas Service
    • Aerospace
    • Portable Transfer of Hazardous Liquids

Topic 4

Pumps operation

  1. Radial flow pumps
  2. Mixed flow pump
  3. Axial and semi-axial pumps
  4. Centrifugal pumps
  5. Series and parallel connection
  6. Displacement rotary pumps
  7. Flow control
  8. Automatic Priming

Topic 5

Compressors operation

  1. Dynamic Compressors
  2. Axial Compressors
  3. Centrifugal Compressors

Topic 6

Turbines operation

  1. Classification of turbines
  2. General operating conditions
  3. Impulse turbines
  4. Radial flow turbine
  5. Axial flow turbines
  6. Control and governing of turbines  

Topic 7


  1. Pump Drives and Power transmission
  2. Compressor Drives Concept design, theory and installation methodology

Topic 8

Turbomachines selection

  1. Preliminary Remarks
  2. Cordier Diagram and Machine Type
  3. Estimating the Efficiency
  4. Preliminary Machine Selection
  5. Fan Selection From Vendor Data
  6. Pump Selection From Vendor Data
  7. Selection of Variable Pitch And Variable Inlet Vane Fans

Topic 9

Pump Selection

  1. Pump specification and selection
  2. Bases of pump selection
  3. Selection based on the type of pumped liquid
  4. Selection Based on Operating Condition
  5. Selection Based on Reliability and Maintainability
  6. Selection Based on Initial and Operating Cost
  7. Other Factors Affecting Pump Selection
  8. Energy conservation and life-cycle costs
  9. Future design considerations and applications

Topic 10

Relevant International codes and standards

  1. Why Insist on Better Pumps?
  2. ANSI and ISO Versus API Pumps
  3. Pumps: Applicable international codes
  4. Compressors: Applicable international codes

Topic 11

Noise, maintenance and condition monitoring of Turbomachines

  1. Introductory Remarks
  2. Sound And Noise
  3. Fan Noise
  4. Sound Power and Sound Pressure
  5. Outdoor Propagation
  6. Indoor Propagation
  7. A Note on Pump Noise Compressor and Turbine Noise
  8. Vibration and its effect on bearing life
  9. Monitoring methods differ
  10. Vibration acceptance limit
  11. Causes of excessive vibrations
  12. Rotor balancing
  13. Performance analysis and its application to optimize time for overhaul
  14. Other methods of performance analysis for pump condition monitoring

Topic 12

Project and Unit Review

In the final week, students will have an opportunity to review the contents covered so far.  Opportunity will be provided for a review of student work and to clarify any outstanding issues.  Instructors/facilitators may choose to cover a specialized topic if applicable to that cohort.

Engineers Australia

The Australian Engineering Stage 1 Competency Standards for the Professional Engineer, approved as of 2013. This table is referenced in the mapping of graduate attributes to learning outcomes and via the learning outcomes to student assessment.

Stage 1 Competencies and Elements Competency
1. Knowledge and Skill Base
1.1 Comprehensive, theory-based understanding of the underpinning natural and physical sciences and the engineering fundamentals applicable to the engineering discipline.
1.2 Conceptual understanding of the mathematics, numerical analysis, statistics, and computer and information sciences which underpin the engineering discipline.
1.3 In-depth understanding of specialist bodies of knowledge within the engineering discipline.
1.4 Discernment of knowledge development and research directions within the engineering discipline.
1.5 Knowledge of engineering design practice and contextual factors impacting the engineering discipline.
1.6 Understanding of the scope, principles, norms, accountabilities, and bounds of sustainable engineering practice in the specific discipline.
2. Engineering Application Ability
2.1 Application of established engineering methods to complex engineering problem-solving.
2.2 Fluent application of engineering techniques, tools and resources.
2.3 Application of systematic engineering synthesis and design processes.
2.4 Application of systematic approaches to the conduct and management of engineering projects.
3. Professional and Personal Attributes
3.1 Ethical conduct and professional accountability.
3.2 Effective oral and written communication in professional and lay domains.
3.3 Creative, innovative and pro-active demeanor.
3.4 Professional use and management of information.
3.5 Orderly management of self and professional conduct.
3.6 Effective team membership and team leadership.

Software/Hardware Used


  • Software: N/A

  • Version: N/A

  • Instructions:  N/A

  • Additional resources or files: N/A


  • N/A