Module code: ENGM072

Module provider

Chemical and Process Engineering

Module Leader

CECELJA F Dr (Chm Proc Eng)

Number of Credits


ECT Credits



FHEQ Level 7

JACs code


Module cap (Maximum number of students)


Module Availability

Semester 1

Overall student workload

Independent Study Hours: 120

Lecture Hours: 22

Tutorial Hours: 11

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework COURSEWORK 40%
Examination EXAM 2 HOURS 60%

Alternative Assessment


Prerequisites / Co-requisites

ENG1085 or equivalent

Module overview

Nowadays, the design, planning and operations management relay on mathematical models the complexity of which depends on the detail of models and complexity of the problem they represent. In process industry these design and operation planning functions are particularly complex and a wide range of optimisation processes and methodologies are used to minimise risks and/or improve quality in making concomitant decisions. Consequently, the module intends to introduce to students the formulation of the decision making problems and application of optimisation techniques to support decisions with real-life worked examples.

Module aims

A systematic understanding and critical awareness of the importance of the process of optimisation and decision making in process engineering;

A knowledge of formulating decision-making problems and applying technology to support decisions;

A knowledge and skill to use the General Algebraic Modelling System (GAMS) in solving engineering problems.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
Identify and classify optimisation techniques. KP
Select and use optimisation techniques appropriate for a particular problem. K
Formulate optimization and decision-support models. KC
Use commercial modelling platforms (GAMS) to solve small and large problems. PT
Recognise the importance and relevance of using graphical representations, reviewing results and consequent critical thinking, as well as concomitant reporting. PT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Module content

Introduction to the decision making process: the basic concept of knowledge management, decision making process and knowledge support to the decisions

Fundamentals of optimisation: concept of feasibility and optimality, convexity, formulation of general optimisation algorithms

Linear programming: concept of feasible point method for optimisation, formulation of equality and inequality constrained optimisation problems, geometry of linear programming, standard form of linear optimisation problem, the concept of basic solutions and extreme points, the Simplex method for linear programming, solution of network optimisation problems

Unconstrained optimisation: optimality conditions, Newton’s method of optimisation, methods of unconstrained optimisation with derivatives, methods of optimisation that do not require derivatives

Nonlinear programming: optimisation with linear equality constraints, optimisation with linear inequality constraints, nonlinear constraints

Integer and Mixed Integer Programming: concept of integer programming, concept of mixed integer linear programming, Branch and bound method for mixed-integer linear programming

General Algebraic Modelling System (GAMS): general principles of programming in GAMS, practical issues in  using GAMS, results and result interpretation.


Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

Introduce principles of decision making process in general and optimisation in particular and their implementation and use through theory and worked examples. This is mainly delivered through lectures and laboratory experiments using GAMS on independently worked out examples.

The learning and teaching methods include:

2 hours lecture per week x 11 weeks
1 hour tutorial x 11 weeks
2 hours revision lectures


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate

·         Understanding of scientific principles, methodologies and mathematical methods associated with decision making and optimisation, as well as the ability to formulate and solve particular optimisation problem in the final examination. The coursework tests and amplifies awareness and ability to formulate and solve a practical optimisation problem in engineering.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

·         Coursework – 40%, 15 hrs (LOs  2, 3, 4)             

·         Examination – 60%, 2 hrs   (LOs 1, 2, 4, 5)


Formative assessment and feedback

Formative verbal feedback is given during laboratory experiments
Formative feedback on coursework is given verbally and available on SurreyLearn to provide feedback on understanding of optimisation and decision making process and respective problem formulation and solution.

Reading list

Reading list for OPTIMISATION AND DECISION MAKING : http://aspire.surrey.ac.uk/modules/engm072

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2017/8 academic year.