ENGR 650 Solar and Renewable Energy Utilization

Introduction to the technologies of a wide range of solar energy applications and related public policy, economic, and environmental issues.

About the Course

This course provides a basic overview of all the ways in which solar energy can be used. It will be an "all you need to know about solar energy" one-stop content for a broad audience of students, teachers, professionals, and entrepreneurs. Students can compare and obtain a perspective of fundamental physical insights, chemistry aspects of solar energy conversion, and engineering potential - all in one course. Students will also gain a perspective of the broad gamut of development related to each solar energy area from this course through ample references and reading materials.

Learning Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, a student will be able to:

  • Develop a knowledge and understanding about the various types of processes that utilize solar energy
  • Compare the similarities between the different processes that utilize solar energy
  • Evaluate materials for their properties and their potential applications in the context of solar energy
  • Develop an awareness of the current state-of-the-art systems used for harvesting solar energy
  • Apply simple mathematical skills to derive expressions useful to examine material properties


Ravi Subramanian, Ph.D., ravisv@unr.edu

Ravi Subramanian is an associate professor in the Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering. He received his Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the University of Notre Dame in 2004.

His research is the field of alternate energy with emphasis in materials. He has more than 10 years of experience in solar energy materials synthesis, characterization, and application. He mentors students in master's and Ph.D. programs and has several publications to his credit. He has also spearheaded the teaching of alternate energy courses at the University of Nevada, Reno for several years.