This programme responds to the worldwide demand for building services engineers who have a sound knowledge of engineering principles and the ability to apply this knowledge within the building services industry. This programme is accredited by CIBSE, the IMechE and the Energy Institute and this will provide a route to Chartered Engineer status in the UK.
A UK first or second class honours degree or equivalent internationally recognised qualification, usually in engineering or other appropriate science and technology subject areas. For an alternative route of entry please see the Building Services Engineering Foundation Course. Other qualifications and relevant experience will be assessed on an individual basis. English Language requirements: IELTS score 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in each subsection; TOEFL Internet test 79 (R18, L17, S20, W17); TOEFL (paper-based) score 550 and 4 in essay rating (TWE). For alternative English language qualifications accepted, please see our International pages.
Building services engineering is an interdisciplinary profession. It involves the specification, design, installation and management of all the engineering services associated with the built environment. With the growing complexity of engineering services in modern buildings and the significance of energy conservation and emissions control, the role of the building services engineer is becoming increasingly important. In addition, the need to provide an internal environment that balances the comfort needs of the occupants with the functional requirements of the building calls for engineers with a wide range of knowledge and skills.
The aim of the programme is to respond to the worldwide demand for building services engineers and managers who have a sound knowledge of engineering and management principles and the ability to apply this knowledge to the complex situations prevailing within the building services industry. The Building Services Engineering course is of particular relevance to engineers who want to develop technical understanding and expertise across the multi-disciplines of Building Services Engineering.
Course Content Modes of Study 1 Year Full-Time -
The taught element of the course (September to April) includes seven modules; delivery will be by a combination of lectures, tutorials and group/seminar work. A further four months (May to September) is spent undertaking the dissertation.
3-5 Years Distance Learning -
The distance learning programme is designed to enable you to conduct most of your studies at home, in your own time and at your own pace. There is no requirement to attend lectures at Brunel University and there is no set timetable of lectures, instead you follow a structured programme of self-study at home or at work. This gives you the freedom to arrange a work programme to suit yourself and you should usually allow about twelve hours each week for study. There are set submission dates for assignments but we have tried to design the programme so that they are well-spaced, giving you the maximum flexibility in your study plans. Students can take between 3 and 5 years to complete the course. The average is 3 years, with students taking four modules in the first year, three modules in the second year and the dissertation in the third year. However, depending on your other commitments you can take longer up to a maximum of 5 years. Students are supplied with a study pack in the form of text books and CD-ROMs; you have assignments to submit and exams to sit each year. Examinations can be taken either at Brunel University or in the country you are resident in. We have an extensive network of organisations (Universities, Colleges and British Council Offices) throughout the world who will provide invigilation services. The cost of invigilation away from Brunel is your responsibility. Examinations are held in May each year.
The course comprises four core modules, three technical modules and a dissertation. The taught modules are:
Core Modules Building Heat Transfer and Air Conditioning (15 credits) Building Heat Transfer
analyses the various mechanisms of heat transfer appropriate to buildings and the principles of heating and cooling load calculations. Areas covered include solar gains, fabric heat transmission, infiltration, effects of moisture content, methods of heating and cooling load calculations, CIBSE admittance procedure, condensation and finite difference techniques.
covers the principles of psychometrics and the design of air conditioning systems. Emphasis is placed on the properties of humid air, thermal comfort, inside and outside design conditions. Air Conditioning design includes air and water, all water systems and unitary equipment.
Electrical Services and Lighting Design (15 credits) Electrical Services
covers aspects of electrical energy supply, electricity tariffs, switchgear and the design of electrical installations to satisfy lEE Wiring Regulations. Also covered are the principles of electrical machines and power electronic devices used in building services applications.
considers the human visual system, the nature and control of light, photometric units, lighting calculations, interior lighting design, daylighting, lamps and luminaires and energy efficiency aspects of lighting systems.
Acoustics, Fire, Drainage and Lifts (15 credits) Acoustics
covers the basic terms and physical principles, sound power and intensity, the ear and hearing, propagation of noise, legal requirements and noise standards, room acoustics, sound generation in services systems, and vibration isolation.
Fire, Drainage and Lifts
considers fire and smoke control, sanitation and waste disposal, industrial ventilation and exhaust requirements, lift and escalator design, space allowance for building services, commissioning and testing.
Energy Conversion Technologies (15 credits)
This element provides a broad introduction to the principles of energy conversion and thermodynamic machines and demonstrates their application to energy conversion and management in buildings. Emphasis is placed on refrigeration plant, energy conversion plant and energy management.
covers the basic principles and components of vapour compression systems, heat pumps and absorption systems.
considers power cycles, combined heat and power, combustion processes, boiler plant, thermal energy storage and environmental impacts of plant operation.
Dissertation (60 credits)
The dissertation is a stimulating and challenging part of each MSc course. Dissertations may be carried out on any approved topic related to the building services industry. Essentially the dissertation gives the student the opportunity to apply the techniques and disciplines covered in the taught course to a topic of their own interest, of interest to a sponsoring or industrial organisation, or of research interest. Some recent dissertations include: Energy conservation through the use of ground source heat pumps An improved management methodology for BS implementation in an aerospace environment Assessment of thermal performance of Portomaso Business Centre with implications on other major projects in Malta
Who is this course suitable for?
Managers and designers, who need to broaden their experience and require updating. Lecturers in higher education, moving into or requiring updating in Building Services Engineering. Others with engineering and technology backgrounds, perhaps working in advisory or consultancy roles, who wish to familiarise themselves with Building Services Engineering. However, choice of course will be dependent upon the type and extent of knowledge and skills required. The MSc Building Services Engineering is of particular relevance to engineers who want to develop technical understanding and expertise across the multi-disciplines of Building Services Engineering.
Building Management and Control Systems (15 credits) This element considers the basic theory of instrumentation, control and communications and applies the theory to the control of HVAC plant and building management systems. It includes measurement and instrumentation, revision of control theory, control components and control systems related to services installations. Communications covers principles of signal interfacing, standards and codes of practice, and real time data transfer. Building Management Systems considers the basic principles of building management, components and controls, applications, integration, operation and maintenance.
Fluid Services and Heat Transfer Equipment (15 credits)
This element considers the design and selection of heat transfer equipment for building services applications and the principles of design of air and water distribution systems within buildings. It includes: 1.the heat transfer processes in various types of heat exchangers, cooling and heating coils, condensers and evaporators; 2.cold water demand and supply, hot water services, low, medium and high temperature water systems, chilled and dual temperature systems, pipe sizing and pump selection, system testing and balancing; 3.duct design methods, duct design considerations - low and high velocity systems, fan characteristics and fan selection, system testing and balancing.
Building Services Design and Management (30 credits)
This module consists of the following elements:
1. Environmental Design
considers the effects of engineering design solutions on the internal environment.
2. Project Management
considers management of physical assets, maintenance standards, health and safety and risk assessment. The design of building services system is an interdisciplinary process involving the client, the architects and the building services engineers. The success of the project is to a large extent dependent upon the efficient co-ordination and supervision of the design process.
3. Building Services Design
provides specialist knowledge of the building services design organisation process and experience in the design of integrated building services systems.
Each module is assessed either by formal examination, written assignments or a combination of the two. Cut-off dates for receipt of assignments are specified at the beginning of each stage. Examinations are normally taken in May/June. Successful completion of the taught modules allows the student to proceed to the dissertation stage. To qualify for the award of the MSc degree, the student must submit a satisfactory dissertation. Where the dissertation is judged not to meet the MSc standard the student may be awarded a Postgraduate Diploma.
Former full-time recent graduates now work in building services and construction related consultancies such as Hoare Lea, WSP Group, Faber Maunsel and Hilson Moran. Other employers include several County Councils within their Building Management and Environmental departments, EDF Energy, Scanska and Honeywell Control Systems. The course fully prepares you for work in the building services engineering field. The course also prepares you to carry out related academic research. A number of students have stayed on to carry out a PhD at Brunel University - on average one student per year is offered a PhD position. This course is also delivered by distance learning and the students are already in relevant employment. Anecdotal evidence suggests immediate promotion and/or salary increase on completion of the course. The course is approved by the Chartered Institute of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) and the Energy Institute (EI) as appropriate additional academic study (further learning) for those seeking to become qualified to register as Chartered Engineers (CEng).
There are several advantages in choosing the Brunel Building Services programme:
it is well established within the building services industry, with sponsors of students that include major design and contracting organisations, area health authorities, local authorities and the British Council, as well as several national governments.
emphasis on applications enables students and employers to benefit immediately from the skills and knowledge gained.
Brunel's proximity to London, where large and innovative building developments have been taking place over the last decade, enables rapid infusion of new ideas and technological innovations into the programme content.
Who is the Programme Designed For?
Recent engineering and technology graduates, moving into Building Services and related disciplines. Established engineers and technologists, working in Building Services and faced with the challenge of new areas of responsibility. Managers and designers, who need to broaden their experience and require updating. Lecturers in higher education, moving into or requiring updating in Building Services Engineering. Others with engineering and technology backgrounds, perhaps working in advisory or consultancy roles, who wish to familiarise themselves with Building Services Engineering. However, choice of course will be dependent upon the type and extent of knowledge and skills required. The MSc Building Services Engineering is of particular relevance to engineers who want to develop technical understanding and expertise across the multi-disciplines of Building Services Engineering.