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CODE 111683
SEMESTER 2° Semester
MODULES Questo insegnamento è un modulo di:


The course is proposed as the second module of "Fundamentals of Process Engineering" and introduces the study of the phenomena of transport of material and heat in transformation processes typical of chemical engineering.




The module aims to provide students with formal logic tools for solving complex process problems governed by transport phenomena. The course deals with local balances of material and energy, devoting particular attention to applicative examples on topics characteristic of the chemical and process engineering.


The attendance and active participation in the proposed training activities (frontal lessons, exercises and computer lab) and individual study will allow the student to:

  • correctly write the local balances of material and energy and discuss them using appropriate vocabulary;

  • apply the local balances of material (by mass and moles) and of enthalpy in typical framework of the chemical and process engineering;

  • identify possible simplifying assumptions in the framework of process problems which can be solved using material and energy local balances;

  • calculate convective and diffusive fluxes, as well as concentration and temperature profiles, under different operating conditions;

  • discuss the limiting phenomena in transformation processes and propose preliminary solutions of optimisation;

  • set up the numerical solution of complex systems characterised by transport phenomena.


The module provides frontal lessons in the classroom. The presentation of theoretical contents are alternate by exercises carried out by the teacher on the board or by student teams and aimed at encouraging learning and the discussion of specific examples of process engineering applications. In addition, it is foreseen a computer lab (4 hours) with numerical exercises to be carried out in working groups using a commercial software. The frequency of lessons is recommended.

Transversal skills in terms of communication skills and independent judgment will be acquired through the discussion in the classroom of concreate examples of complex problems.


The program of the module includes the presentation and discussion of the following topics:

1. Introduction

Therminology, intriduction to transport phenomena, general local balance formulation

2. Local material balance

Local material balance by mass and moles

Fick equation, material diffusivity calculation and diffusive flux proprieties

Systematic analysis of the main simplifying assumptions:

  • steady state or not (e.g. penetration theory)

  • zero velocity or not (e.g. film theory)

  • flat symmetry or not (e.g. shape correction factors)

  • absence of reaction or not (e.g. Thiele module and utilisation factor)

  • diluted, binary, isothermal and isobaric system (e.g. property calculation)

3. Local balance of energy

Local balance of energy and its simplification to enthalpy balance

Fourier equation, conductivity calculation

Systematic analysis of the main simplifying assumptions discussed for material balances

4. Complex systems

Mention to momentum balances

Transport analogies

Analysis of systems which require the simultaneous solution of material, energy and momentum balances


The teaching material used during the lessons will be available in the web classroom and/or on TEAMS, as well as examples of final tests proposed in the previous years and a trace for their solution. The notes taken during the lessons and the material in the web classroom are sufficient for the preparation of the exam, but the following books are suggested as supporting and deepening texts:

- R. Byron Bird, Warren E. Stewart, Edwin N. Lightfoot, “Fenomeni di trasporto”, Casa Editrice Ambrosiana, Milano.

- M. Dente, E. Ranzi, “Principi di Ingegneria Chimica”, Città Studi Edizioni, Torino.

- M.C. Annesini, “Fenomeni di trasporto. Fondamenti e applicazioni”, Edizioni Hoepli.

- R.H. Perry, D.W. Green,“Perry’s chemical engineers’ handbook” VIII ed., Mc Graw Hill.


Exam Board





Lessons start in accordance with the Polytechnic School agenda

Class schedule

The timetable for this course is available here: Portale EasyAcademy



The final test of the module consists in passing a written test for admission to the oral test. The written test consists of a problem to be solved in 2 hours, answering to one or more specific questions and an open question related to the result discussion. The necessary data can be provided in the text or to be found on technical handbooks made available by the teacher, while it is not allowed the consultation of any other text.

Students will find examples of tests proposed in previous years with the related trace for the solutions on the web classroom. Some exam examples are carried out in detail in the classroom and the teacher is available for explanation agreeing appointment.

The written test can be held either in previous appeals or in the same appeal in which student intends to take the oral exam. The written test has no expiry limits, it can be repeated, but in this way the grade which is considered valid is the one obtained on the last written exam.

To access the oral exam students must have passed the written test with a minimum grade of 16/30 and the final grade will be the average between written and oral exam. The oral test can be repeated maintaining the grade obtained for the written test.

The grade obtained in the overall teaching will be the average of the marks given in the two modules in which the teaching is divided.

Two exam appeals for the ‘winter’ session will be available (January and February) and three appeals for the ‘summer’ session (June, July and September)). The oral test can be held also during the teaching break provided by the Polytechnic School in Autumn and Spring. No extraordinary appeals will be granted outside the periods indicated by the Polytechnic School, with the exception of students who have not included formative activities in the study plan current academic year.


The written test concerns a problem which requires the solution of local balances applied to a systems characterized by material and/or energy transport phenomena. In addition to the ability to correctly formulate and solve the problem, the applied methodology, the discussion of the assumed hypotheses and the written quality of exposition will be evaluated.

The oral exam includes questions concerning all the contents proposed during the lessons, asked in terms of theoretical questions or application problems. The examination aims to assess the specific skills acquired and, in particular, the ability to apply them combined together to face concrete case studies. The quality of the exposition, the correct use of technical terminology and critical reasoning ability will be also assessed.

Exam schedule

Data Ora Luogo Degree type Note
21/12/2023 09:00 GENOVA Orale
02/02/2024 09:00 GENOVA Orale
07/06/2024 09:00 GENOVA Orale
18/07/2024 09:00 GENOVA Orale
13/09/2024 09:00 GENOVA Orale


For a successful learning, in addition to basic knowledge of mathematics, chemistry and physics, the capability to manage macroscopic material and heat balances is required, but no formal propaedeuticity is provided.

Working students and students with SLD, disability or other special educational needs certification are advised to contact the teacher at the beginning of the course to agree on teaching and exam methods that, in compliance with the teaching objectives, take into account the personal learning modalities and provide suitable compensatory tools.

Agenda 2030 - Sustainable Development Goals

Agenda 2030 - Sustainable Development Goals
Responbile consumption and production
Responbile consumption and production