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Module Specifications..

Current Academic Year 2023 - 2024

Please note that this information is subject to change.

Module Title Engineering Computation
Module Code MM281
School School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering
Module Co-ordinatorSemester 1: Alan Kennedy
Semester 2: Alan Kennedy
Autumn: Alan Kennedy
Module TeachersAlan Kennedy
NFQ level 8 Credit Rating 5
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None
Coursework Only
Reassessment of continuous assessment will consist of one or more resit tests.

This module aims to introduce concepts in numerical methods and to enable the students to use Excel and VBA to solve engineering problems using numerical schemes.

Learning Outcomes

1. Explain the purpose and limitations of numerical methods.
2. Describe and explain the implementation of a range of numerical methods.
3. Implement these methods using Excel and VBA.
4. Specify the numerical information required to solve a variety of mathematical problems.
5. Use Excel and VBA for professional data presentation and analysis

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Lecture20No Description
Laboratory36Computer and tutorial session plus tests
Independent Study68Preparation for tests
Total Workload: 124

All module information is indicative and subject to change. For further information,students are advised to refer to the University's Marks and Standards and Programme Specific Regulations at: http://www.dcu.ie/registry/examinations/index.shtml

Indicative Content and Learning Activities

Basic principles
Computational cost – round-off and systematic errors – estimating accuracy – order of errors – minimizing round-off errors – numerical instability

Linear systems: Direct Methods
Gaussian elimination – round-off error and pivoting - Gauss-Jordan method - Thomas algorithm – condition number – residual errors and iterative improvement - use of MINVERSE and MMULT for solving equations in Excel

Linear systems: Iterative methods
Jacobi and Gauss-Seidel methods – convergence criteria - use of built-in iterative solver in Excel - use of Excel Solver for solving equations

Bisection and Newton Raphson Methods - use of Goal Seek in Excel

Golden section search – Newton s Method - steepest descent method - use of Excel Solver for single- and multi-variate optimisation

Numerical integration
Trapezoidal and Simpson s Rule – Romberg integration

Linear regression
Use of Excel for best-fit lines

Explicit solution of ODEs
Euler s Method – first and higher order - systems of equations - Runge-Kutta methods – step-size control - interval-halving – stiff ODEs and ill-conditioned problems – stability criterion for Euler s method - Shooting method for boundary value problems

Numerical differentiation
Taylor Series and finite difference approximations - order

Finite-difference method for ODEs
Introduction to FD method

Solution of PDEs using the finite difference method
Implicit and explicit schemes

Issues arising with measured and sampled data
Differentiating and integrating measured data with noise – smoothing using moving average - aliasing

Coding of numerical methods
Use of Excel and VBA for implementing numerical methods and viewing results

Data presentation and analysis
Plotting data in Excel; data-fitting; using Excel for simple sensitivity analyses; data sorting and filtering; conditional formatting and data validation; use of database-related functions

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment100% Examination Weight0%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
In Class TestThree Excel/VBA/written tests100%Other
Reassessment Requirement Type
Resit arrangements are explained by the following categories;
1 = A resit is available for all components of the module
2 = No resit is available for 100% continuous assessment module
3 = No resit is available for the continuous assessment component
This module is category 1
Indicative Reading List

  • Chapra, S., Canale, R.: 2016, Numerical Methods for Engineers, McGraw-Hill, 978-007339792
Other Resources

39896, Website, 0, MM281 Loop page,
Programme or List of Programmes
CAMB.Eng. Mechanical & Manufacturing Eng
ECSAStudy Abroad (Engineering & Computing)
ECSAOStudy Abroad (Engineering & Computing)
Date of Last Revision17-SEP-07

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