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MJ2506 Energy Technologies for Sustainable Transportation 6.0 credits

The course aims to bring knowledge about the energy needed for transportation in our society and solutions how to provide energy efficient and sustainable transportation. The course covers both on­board drivetrains and the overall infrastructure needed for established and emerging transportation systems, with a clear focus on the energy flow and resources (economic and other) associated with that.

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Headings with content from the Course syllabus MJ2506 (Autumn 2023–) are denoted with an asterisk ( )

Content and learning outcomes

Course contents

The course aims to bring knowledge about the energy needed for transportation in our society and solutions how to provide energy efficient and sustainable transportation. The course starts with an overview of different transportation needs and the state of art solutions for them. The system efficiencies for those solutions and emissions are analyzed with relevant system borders.

Following that, there is an overview of the physical properties and boundary conditions that have a strong influence on the energy consumption for the various kinds of transportation. Infrastructure for transportation is studied, both for the transport itself and for the energy supply infrastructure (the latter is in focus). Investment cost as well as operational cost are addressed together with sustainability aspects. For different vehicles and transportation needs, various powertrain configurations and concepts are being used. An overview of both existing and emerging powertrains are given, with a special focus on the energy related and sustainability related characteristics and identification of the need for further development and implementation hurdles. The lead-time to phase in new solutions as well as phasing out less desired technologies is discussed.

Intended learning outcomes

The course aims at providing the students with fundamental background and tools for understanding the supply and use of energy for transportation purposes, with a special focus on sustainable solutions.

After completing the course, the student will be able to:

  1. Explain the energy flow from source to wheel for various fossil and renewable sources (incl. new/advanced fuels) and transportation applications/systems (road, rail, maritime, aviation and space) and apply relevant system boundaries and determine the efficiency for the energy flow within the system. Explain the impact of emissions (global and local) and energy losses from transportation.
  2. Identify and show an understanding of the physical properties and ambient conditions associated with transportation that have a substantial impact on the amount of energy used.
  3. Explain the infrastructure needed for different transport options (both roads/tracks etc. and energy supply infrastructure) and the life-cycle influence (in economic, environmental and social terms) related to implementation of such infrastructures.
  4. Describe different power train concepts and technologies for energy storage and bi-directional energy flow with their key characteristics and identify positive and negative aspects of on-board energy storage.
  5. Identify gaps, bottlenecks and development trends (including digital solutions) towards sustainable transport systems as well as trends that counteract increased sustainability, e.g. increased energy use.

Course disposition

No information inserted

Literature and preparations

Specific prerequisites

Knowledge equivalent to
MJ2411 "Renewable Energy Technology"
MJ2405 "Sustainable Power Generation"
MJ2407 "Sustainable Energy Utilization"
MJ2413 "Energy and Environment"

Recommended prerequisites

The course has been designed as a complementary elective to students in the Sustainable Energy Engineering Master Program, and with a pre-requisite of completing the courses listed below. The course is however also open to students from other MSc. or exchange programs given that they have studied the topics touched upon in the courses below.

•       MJ2411, Renewable Energy Technologies, 6 credits

•       MJ2405, Sustainable Power Generation, 9 credits

•       MJ2407, Sustainable Energy Utilisation, 9 credits

•       MJ2413, Energy and Environment, 6 credits

In addition, it is recommended to have knowledge in basic electrical engineering corresponding to relevant parts of MF1016 (9 credits) or MF 1017 (6 credits), Basic Electrical Engineering


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Examination and completion

If the course is discontinued, students may request to be examined during the following two academic years.

Grading scale

A, B, C, D, E, FX, F


  • KONA - Quiz, 2.0 credits, grading scale: P, F
  • PROA - Project with two submissions, 2.0 credits, grading scale: A, B, C, D, E, FX, F
  • TENA - Essay, 2.0 credits, grading scale: A, B, C, D, E, FX, F

Based on recommendation from KTH’s coordinator for disabilities, the examiner will decide how to adapt an examination for students with documented disability.

The examiner may apply another examination format when re-examining individual students.

Opportunity to complete the requirements via supplementary examination

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Opportunity to raise an approved grade via renewed examination

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Ethical approach

  • All members of a group are responsible for the group's work.
  • In any assessment, every student shall honestly disclose any help received and sources used.
  • In an oral assessment, every student shall be able to present and answer questions about the entire assignment and solution.

Further information

Course web

Further information about the course can be found on the Course web at the link below. Information on the Course web will later be moved to this site.

Course web MJ2506

Offered by

Main field of study

Mechanical Engineering

Education cycle

Second cycle

Add-on studies

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Anders Malmquist (