Marine Engineering Education For the 21St Century- Addressing the Oncoming Innovations in Ship Technology
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A marine engineer, educated to work mainly on seagoing ships, has an expected professional life of about 40 years, both at sea and on shore facilities Therefore, the education he/she should have should address the expected innovations of the few decades to come. Present day technology related to ships and shipping, like all fields of engineering, is under a rapid progress. The classical marine engineering education of the late 20th century, as specified by International Maritime Organization's Model Courses 7.02 and 7.04, has been prepared to attain a specialization on thermal power systems, machine elements, shop practice related to repair and maintenance of shipboard systems and basic electrical engineering However, developing technology has also been dictating an additional level of knowledge and skills on both hardware and software of mechatronic control systems and power electronics, while concerns related to environment and higher costs of energy has been dictating orientation to more efficient operation of power plants. Another oncoming revolution shall be the introduction of fuel cell to marine power systems and integration of main propulsion and shipboard electrical power systems Therefore, the education for marine engineers has to cover electrical engineering topics in addition to mechanical engineering and naval architecture disciplines. The purpose of this paper is to address those issues and propose a curriculum outline for marine engineering at Bachelor of Science level.