Katedra Energetyki Politechniki Krakowskiej

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Student Scientific Expedition EUROTRIP 2009

A Scientific Expedition organised by students of the Energy Engineering with the participation of employees of the Department of Thermal Power Engineering took place in May 2009. The trip was attended by students of 3rd, 4th and 5th year. The route covered the following countries: Germany, Switzerland, France and Italy.
The first point of departure was the Institut für Verfahrenstechnik und Dampfkesselwesen Technische Universität Stuttgart. There, after a short seminar on power engineering in Germany, laboratories were presented, and current research was discussed (fluidised bed barbotaging, combustion process research ‒ collecting information on gas concentration, temperature and velocity measurements of the deposit in the furnace, investigation of combustion processes at atmospheric pressure, investigation of mechanisms for the formation of microscopic particles of particulate matter ‒ sulphates and those resulting from incomplete combustion).
Another place that was visited was CERN ‒ The European Organization for Nuclear Research, located in the north-western suburbs of Geneva, on the border of Switzerland and France. The participants of the expedition met with a very warm welcome from Polish CERN employees, who presented the history of the Organisation, introduced the world of quantums and quarks and answered many fascinating questions. After the introduction, the permanent Microcosmos exhibition was visited, where one could become a researcher of cosmic radiation, antiprotons, quarks, gluons and many other particles by oneself doing experiments, watching models, audiovisual presentations and computer simulations. The great event was the opportunity to see one of the four detectors of the Great Hadron Collider, 100 m underground. Moreover, the participants of the Eurotrip 2009 Expedition were guided through the SM18 hall, where superconductive magnets are prepared and tested to create an accelerator.
In the Italian company Ansaldo Energia SpA, whose production hall is located in Genova, students could learn about the production techniques of gas turbines, steam turbines and generators. Passing through successive halls, students and employees of the Department observed the production process from the manufacture of individual components (turbine blades, bearings, etc.) to the testing of finished products (turbines, turbine generators).
The last point of the Expedition was the CESI Ricerca research centre in Milan. It carries out research on electricity and the generation, storage and transfer of energy. Visitors were guided through the electrical laboratory, where medium and high voltage tests are carried out, and the distributed generation laboratory, which includes: distributed generation testing equipment, fuel cells, microturbines, cogeneration systems, photovoltaic battery fields, Dish-Stirling solar installation and energy storage systems.
To reach these centres, an approximately 2500 km long route was covered. During the journey, participants could admire the Alps, including the beautiful areas of Provence and, on the way back, the Tyrol. During stops and overnight stays, cities such as Prague, Strasbourg, Nice, Cannes, Milan were visited, and while passing through and overnight in Chamonix, eager students could take a cable car to the summit of Aiguille du Midi (3842 m), located in the Mont Blanc massif.
The Expedition would not have taken place without the support and financial assistance of the following persons and institutions:
– Vice-Rector for Students’ Affairs ‒ Prof. Leszek Mikulski,
– Dean of the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering ‒ Prof. Leszek Wojnar,
– Director of the Institute of Industrial Equipment and Power Engineering ‒ Prof. Jan Taler,
– Rector’s Plenipotentiary for Scientific Clubs ‒ Prof. Barbara Tal-Figiel,
– Plenipotentiary of the Rector for Disabled Persons ‒ Jan Ortyl, M.Sc,
– Director of the Training and Quality Systems Organization Centre ‒ Adam Tabor, PhD,
– The Main Science Bookstore,
– Dance Academy.
The participants of the Eurotrip 2009 Expedition ‒ both students of Energy Engineering and staff of the Department of Thermal Power Engineering ‒ would like to thank all the people and institutions without whose support the expedition would not have a chance to succeed.