Cryogenic Process Engineering

The College of Engineering and the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB) at MSU are offering a graduate-level cryogenic process engineering course every other fall semester as ME940. This course provides an introduction to this discipline with applications to 4.5 Kelvin and 2 Kelvin helium systems used to support particle accelerators. It is offered through the MSU Cryogenic Initiative

Cryogenic process, especially 4.5 K and 2 K refrigeration, are very energy-intensive and complex, comprised of many sub-systems. Course material will include cryogenic fluid and material properties, application of heat transfer and fluid mechanics to cryogenic systems, process exergy analysis and cryogenic cycle fundamentals, key components (e.g., screw compressors, centrifugal compressors and turbines, heat exchangers, phase-separators, adsorbers), basic and real system modeling, helium purification, and sub-atmospheric systems. 

The MSU Cryogenic Initiative is a collaboration between FRIB and the College of Engineering. The goal is to provide a rigorous graduate-level academic and applied research program focused on training and educating engineers in cryogenic system design, technology and skills. The research focus at MSU is in developing processes and key system component technologies to increase system efficiency and reliability with student exposure to both small and large 4.5 K and 2 K helium systems. 

Cryogenic Process Engineering: ME940 (every other fall semester)

  • Prerequisite ME410 (or equivalent)

  • This course is designed to provide an introduction to cryogenic process engineering with applications to 4.5 K and 2 K helium systems used to support particle accelerators. Topics to include:

    • Pertinent aspects of selected fluids and engineering material properties

    • Application of heat transfer and fluid mechanics to cryogenic systems

    • Cryogenic process cycle fundamentals with application of exergy method

    • Key components: screw compressors, vacuum pumps, cold compressors, turbines, heat exchangers, phase-separators, valves

    • Basic modeling and Carnot Step analysis: liquefiers and refrigerators

    • Real system modeling: real fluid effects – the cold end process, multi-stream heat exchange, turbine strings and expansion step configurations

    • Floating pressure process

    • Liquid nitrogen pre-cooling

    • Helium purification

    • Sub-atmospheric helium systems