Course Title: Process Plant Design and Economics

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Process Plant Design and Economics

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


120H Civil, Environmental & Chemical Engineering


Sem 2 2007,
Sem 2 2008,
Sem 2 2009,
Sem 2 2010,
Sem 2 2011,
Sem 2 2012,
Sem 2 2013,
Sem 2 2014,
Sem 2 2015,
Sem 2 2016


City Campus


172H School of Engineering


Sem 2 2017,
Sem 2 2018,
Sem 2 2019,
Sem 2 2020,
Sem 2 2021,
Sem 2 2022,
Sem 2 2023

Course Coordinator: Professor Raj Parthasarathy

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 2941

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 10.10.26

Course Coordinator Availability: by appointment

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

It is expected that you will have a strong understanding and broad knowledge in core chemical engineering courses such as mass and energy balances, heat and mass transfer, fluid mechanics, and reaction engineering.

Course Description

This course focuses on engineering and economic aspects involved in the development or modification of commercial process plants. It involves the integration and application of principles learnt in other chemical engineering courses like mass and heat transfer, reaction engineering and fluid mechanics to select and size suitable equipment for a given process. You will develop the practical skills required to conduct the process design projects in subsequent years of the Chemical Engineering program. The activities in this course involve creative problem-solving, team work and effective communication. You will develop skills in estimating capital and operating costs of process plants and evaluating project profitability.



Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Outcomes for BH079 Bachelor of Engineering (Chemical Engineering)(Honours):

1 Knowledge and Skill Base


1.6. Understanding of the scope, principles, norms, accountabilities and bounds of contemporary engineering practice in the specific discipline.


2 Engineering Application Ability


2.1. Application of established engineering methods to complex engineering problem solving.


2.2. Fluent application of engineering techniques, tools and resources.


2.3. Application of systematic engineering synthesis and design processes.


3 Professional and Personal Attributes


3.1. Ethical conduct and professional accountability


3.2. Effective oral and written communication in professional and lay domains.


3.4. Professional use and management of information.

3.5. Orderly management of self and professional conduct.



 On completion of this course you should be able to:

  1. Analyse, synthesise and design processes for manufacturing products commercially;
  2. Integrate and apply techniques and knowledge acquired in other courses such as thermodynamics, heat and mass transfer, fluid mechanics, instrumentation and control to design heat exchangers, plate and packed columns and engineering flow diagrams;
  3. Use commercial flowsheeting software to simulate processes and design process equipment;
  4. Recognise economic, construction, safety, operability and other design constraints;
  5. Estimate fixed and working capitals and operating costs for process plants;
  6. Evaluate the profitability of process industry projects using measures such as ROI, NPV and DCFR.


Overview of Learning Activities

The course delivery, where possible, will involve lectorials, case studies, pre-recorded lecture videos, interactive tutorials, directed reading, group projects, online materials, journal references, guest lectorials by industry visitors and specialists and audio-visual presentations. Varied course delivery modes and assessment techniques will help you to adapt to different learning and testing situations. Assessment in this course will include assignments, mid-term tests, technical reports, and a final test. Assignments and tests will be used to test your ability to conceptualise innovative and optimum solutions to open-ended problems that are commonplace in process plant design. Technical reports may be used to test your ability in locating information sources, analysing them and presenting them effectively. 

Overview of Learning Resources

Learning resources for this course include prescribed textbooks and course notes. In addition, bibliographies of additional references (including textbooks, journal articles and online materials) will be provided. The details of prescribed textbooks and other references will be made available in Part B of this course guide.

Overview of Assessment


☒This course has no hurdle requirements.


Assessment Tasks:


Assessment Task 1: Assignments 

Weighting 30%

This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 2 and 3


Assessment Task 2: Mid-semester test

Weighting 27%

This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 2 and 3


Assessment Task 3: Final test

Weighting 35%

This assessment supports CLOs 1, 2, 4, 5 and 6


Assessment Task 4: Tutorials 

Weighting 8%

This assessment supports CLOs 1, 2 and 3