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School of Applied Sciences and Technology

Alternative Energy Technology

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The location where your NAIT courses will be held.

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The type of certification (degree, diploma, certificate) you will earn after completing your program.

  • Degree - NAIT offers a number of business degrees and applied science and technology degrees accredited by Alberta Advanced Education.
    Applied degree programs offer a stronger emphasis on practical applications of the concepts learned in the classroom
  • Diplomas & Certificates - These credit programs take 1 or 2 years and lead to government approved and industry-recognized credentials.
  • Journeyman Certificate - Hands-on and expert-led apprenticeship and industry training for skilled trades and technology professionals.
  • Continuing Education/Non-Credit - NAIT offers a wide range of non-credit programs and courses for personal and professional development in a number of interesting and exciting fields. These options are great for people who may be working but are interested in studying as well.

Delivery Options

The flexible schedule options for this course including time of day and full/part-time.

  • Day - Courses taking place between Monday - Friday, before 5 PM.
  • Evening/Weekend - Courses taking place on weekdays from 5 PM or later, or Saturdays and Sundays.
  • Online - Sometimes called "Home Study" or "Computer-Based Learning"
  • Distance - Traditional correspondence format. These courses work best if you can't get to a campus or if your schedule can't accommodate fixed class times

Length

The average or expected time it will take to complete your program.

Open Studies

Open Studies allows you to explore credit courses without applying to a program.
It is an opportunity to get a feel for school and what program you want to be in.

International Students

Program availability may be limited for international applicants. Contact your student advisor for more information.

Advanced Credit

You may apply for advanced credit once you have been accepted into the program. Advanced Credit can be Transfer Credit (for completed post-secondary courses) or PLAR (Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition).

Transfer Credit

In addition to the common guidelines outlined on the Transfer and Credit Options section and on the Transfer Credit Request Form (PDF), your program has other advanced credit requirements that are applied to each request including:

  • You must have completed the course or program no more than 3 year(s) ago unless a formalized articulation agreement is in place
  • You must have a minimum mark of C in the course(s) or program

Prior Learning and Assessment Recognition (PLAR)

If you do not qualify for transfer credit or credential recognition, Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) may be an option.

Contact the program for additional information about Advanced Credit.

Plug into new technologies

Explore new and non-traditional energy sources and set yourself up to begin a career in the exciting and growing alternative energy sector. 

NAIT's Alternative Energy Technology diploma program will provide you with both the theoretical and practical skills needed to design, integrate and maintain systems that utilize major alternative energy sources such as solar, geothermal, wind, biofuels, hydro, fuel cell and co-generation. 

You'll also enhance your understanding of the industry through studies in project management, economics, business and energy management.

Employment rates reported by NAIT alumni are for information purposes and do not guarantee future employment opportunities.

Salaries reported by NAIT alumni are for information purposes and are not a guarantee of future alumni income.

Hands-on, industry-relevant training 

Through a combination of classroom education and hands-on learning in our state-of-the-art Alternative Energy Centre, you can expect to become familiar with system design, how to integrate multiple energy sources and system life cycle analyses. 

 

Concept breakdown

The program is broken up into 4 semesters, each focusing on a particular angle of study:

Semester 1 - Introduction

In the first semester, you'll gain an introduction to the underlying chemical, thermodynamic and physical principles of energy generation and storage. You'll also work on professionalism skills and gain familiarity with common software applications used in the energy sector. 

Semester 2 - Foundations

Explore the major types of alternative energy and interact with solar modules, geothermal systems, fuel cells and wind turbines among other equipment.

Semester 3 - Analysis and Design

With a focus on analysis and design, integrate the materials covered in the first year and study the economics of alternative energy systems. You'll also begin to prepare for your capstone project. 

Semester 4 - Application

Concentrate on the practical application of energy technology, with courses, regulations, energy management and a final capstone project that will challenge you to apply your knowledge and skills to a related technology problem. 

Enter the workforce with confidence 

As green technologies continue to emerge, evolve and decrease in cost, people with sound technical knowledge and practical expertise are increasingly in demand. Consumers, commercial businesses and utilities are turning to alternative energy products and services to help them increase efficiency and sustainability.

Our alumni work in a wide range of industries in occupations like:

  • Installation of renewable energy systems
  • Site evaluation and feasibility
  • System design
  • Project logistics
  • Commissioning and maintenance
  • Energy auditing
  • Energy management planning
  • Bioenergy plant operation
  • Project management
  • Sales and customer care
  • Research and testing
  • Lighting retrofits
  • Independent business owner

Have questions? We've got answers

Student Service Centre

  • Email: askNAIT@nait.ca
  • Phone: 780.471.NAIT (6248)
  • Toll free: 1.877.333.NAIT (6248)

General program information

Have questions? We've got answers 

Student Service Centre

  • Email: askNAIT@nait.ca
  • Phone: 780.471.NAIT (6248)
  • Toll free: 1.877.333.NAIT (6248)

General program information

 



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Level 1 Term 1

ALTE1102Energy and the Environment: Communications and Career Development
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT101
  • Open Studies: Not Available

Students learn fundamental principles and explore issues of how societies develop natural resources such as energy products while endeavoring to protect the environment. Through this exploration, students learn to effectively interact and communicate with a variety of people within the alternative energy technology industry, such as industry leaders, potential clients, the general public, and technical experts. Students compose a variety of documents and prepare document templates, as well as learn to deliver effective oral communications. Students will maintain a professional presence in the community by keeping up-to-date with developments in alternative energy technology, effectively using social media, and establishing an online presence to aid in career-building. Effective time management and organizational skills are also taught.

ALTE1104Energy Software Applications
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Co-requisite: ALTE1102.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT104
  • Open Studies: Not Available

This course is intended to introduce the students to the fundamentals of the MS Office environment. Students will utilize Excel to perform calculations and present data in graphically relevant formats. Computer assisted 2D and 3D drawing (CAD) will be used to communicate technical information in a wide range of detail.

ALTE1105Energy and Storage
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Co-requisite: ALTE1102.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT105
  • Open Studies: Not Available

This course will provide you with a basic foundational understanding of electrical principles followed by the analysis of a wide range of energy storage technologies, their designs and operating fundamentals, applications, market prospects and challenges. By the end of this course students will be able to compare the relative performance of energy storage systems.

ALTE1154Bioenergy
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Co-requisites: CHEM1101.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT154
  • Open Studies: Not Available

The main energy products used by consumers include electrical power, liquid transportation fuels, and combustible gases for heat generation. Many of the other alternative energy technologies discussed in this program (such as wind, solar PV, hydro, and fuel cells) focus primarily on power generation. Biomass, on the other hand, can be used to produce all three major categories of energy products: for example, combustion of wood pellets to generate electricity, fermentation to produce bioethanol as a transportation fuel, and anaerobic digestion of sewage to generate methane, a combustible gas. In this course, students explore the many opportunities for using a variety of biomass feedstocks to produce various energy products and other value-added products.

CHEM1101Chemical Principles in Alternative Energy
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT102
  • Open Studies: Not Available

This course covers the basics of inorganic and organic chemistry with a focus on applications in alternative energy. Chemical concepts required for the understanding of current and emerging energy technologies will be emphasized throughout the course. Stoichiometry and organic chemistry will be utilized towards the understanding of biogas generation and use of biofuels such as bioethanol and biodiesel. Thermochemistry and electrochemistry will be applied to geothermal energy processes, photovoltaic cells and new battery technologies.

PHYS1103Physics of Alternative Energy
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT103
  • Open Studies: Not Available

The primary focus of this course is the development of the students’ ability to analyze and solve technical problems based on a wide range of theories including measurement, motion, wave, light, temperature, electricity and magnetic theory.

Level 1 Term 2

ALTE1151Solar: PV and Thermal Technologies
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Prerequisites: PHYS1103, ALTE1105.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT151
  • Open Studies: Not Available

Students learn to assess solar photovoltaic and thermal energy potential by calculating the system requirements based on demand loads. Students design site-specific solar energy systems.

ALTE1152Geothermal Technology
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Prerequisites: PHYS1103, ALTE1105.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT152
  • Open Studies: Not Available

This course covers the basic principles of geoexchange system design and installation best practices involved in providing space heating, cooling, and hot water systems. Student are also introduced to the basic principles of building construction, heat loss/gain calculations within the building , and the fundamentals of hydronic heating systems.

ALTE1153Wind Technology
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Prerequisites: PHYS1103, ALTE1105.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT153
  • Open Studies: Not Available

This course familiarizes students with the characteristics and classifications of wind, wind power and wind technology. Students will learn to assess wind resources and estimate the economic viability of wind power projects. Students will also gain awareness and knowledge of agencies and processes involved in permitting and regulation.

ALTE1155Co-Generation and Fuel Cell Technologies
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Prerequisites: CHEM1101, PHYS1103, ALTE1105.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT155
  • Open Studies: Not Available

In this course students are introduced to the various types of co-generation systems, often referred to as combined heat and power (CHP), including their operation, construction components, performance, fuels, and optimal deployment. Students are also introduced to the various types of fuel cells, including their operation, components, performance, fuel selection, fuel transportation, fuel storage, and safety issues around hydrogen use in fuel cells.

ALTE1156Hydro Technology
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Prerequisites: PHYS1103, ALTE1105.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT156
  • Open Studies: Not Available

In this course students will characterize and classify hydro power and hydro power generation technologies. Students will analyze and determine hydro power potential in a given grid or isolated load system, and become familiar with operations and maintenance issues. Students will also become familiar with aspects of Alberta's electric grid, micro-generator status and the effects of legislation and rulings upon energy costs.

OHSC1140Introduction to Occupational Health and Safety
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program.
  • Course Equivalencies: OHSD100
  • Open Studies: Not Available

This course introduces the management of Occupation Health and Safety. Students will be provided with a basic overview of applicable legislation, hazard and risk evaluation and control techniques, workplace inspections, investigations and emergency preparedness. Students will be able to recognize the importance of an integrated approach to occupational health and safety in today's workplaces.

Level 2 Term 1

ALTE2201Alternative Energy System Hybridization
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Co-requiste: ALTE2203.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT201
  • Open Studies: Not Available

Students acquire an understanding of both sustainable and conventional technologies that are coupled together forming a single optimal and cost effective system capable of meeting various heating, cooling, and electrical loads. Students further create process flow diagrams and advance programming of different hybridized alternative energy systems to meet functionality.

ALTE2203Alternative Energy Design
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Prerequisites: ALTE1104, ALTE1151, ALTE1152, ALTE1153, ALTE1154, ALTE1155. Co-requiste: ALTE2201.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT203
  • Open Studies: Not Available

In this course, students are introduced to the basic concept of instrumentation and controls related to building applications. They become familiar with the definitions of associated terms, principles and importance of instrumentation and control. Students focus on more advanced design aspects of alternative energy systems. This includes the evaluation of thermal and electrical loads, system sizing, the creation of process flow diagrams, the selection of components, drawing of P&ID and electrical system diagrams and the basic programing of single system controls, e.g. thermostats, charge controllers and inverter settings. Students apply this learning in advanced solar and geothermal design projects.

ALTE2204Economic Principles of Alternative Energy
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Prerequisites: ALTE1104, ALTE1102.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT204
  • Open Studies: Not Available

This course provides an overview of economic principles and business fundamentals within the alternative energy industry. Students will become familiar with how the technologist interfaces with the current energy market and industry development. The course is unique in scope as it contains topics from several major business areas.

ALTE2251Advanced Bioenergy and Biorefining
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Prerequisites: ALTE1154.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT251
  • Open Studies: Not Available

In this course students build upon what they learned in ALTE1154 – Bioenergy, examining in more detail about principles and methods of biorefining and exploring next-generation advanced bioenergy technologies. Topics include cultivation of algae as a feedstock for bioenergy and bioproducts, anaerobic digestion for waste treatment and biogas production, and technologies used for the production of energy densified biomass products such as torrefaction, gasification, and pyrolysis.

ALTE2253AAlternative Energy Project Part I
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Prerequisites: ALTE1151, ALTE1152, ALTE1153, ALTE1154, ALTE1155, ALTE1156, OHSC1140. Co-requisite: PGMT2205.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT253, ALT253A
  • Open Studies: Not Available

In ALTE2253A students will learn why organizations need to improve their productivity. They will learn how to manage meetings effectively, reduce the cost of re-work, improve customer service, how to develop cooperative relationships, and the importance of using soft skills when communicating with others. They will also learn about their own leadership preferences as well as their preferred methods of managing conflict. The students will practice the learned skills by communicating/meeting with project sponsors throughout the semester to solicit input and support for their project plans developed in ALTE2205. This course runs parallel to the ALTE2205 Project Management course in which students learn the project management process and develop project plans for a given project.

PMGT2205Project Management
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program that have completed Level 1. Co-requisite: ALTE2253A. Pre-Requisites: ALTE1151, ALTE1152, ALTE1153, ALTE1154, ALTE1155, ALTE1156, OHSC1140.
  • Open Studies: Not Available

Students will learn to manage projects such that they are completed on time, within budget, and to the satisfaction of all the stakeholders. This course will focus on the essential soft skills that project managers apply to gain participants’ trust and commitment while applying hard technical skills to initiate, plan, execute, monitor & control, and close-out projects.

Level 2 Term 2

ALTE2202Life Cycle Assessment
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Prerequisites: ALTE1104, ALTE2204.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT202
  • Open Studies: Not Available

This course focuses on accounting for environmental impacts, with an emphasis on carbon emissions. The main goal for this course is for students to be able to evaluate information from published life cycle assessments and to perform their own life cycle assessments.

ALTE2252Codes, Regulations and Standards
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Prerequisite: ALTE1151.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT252
  • Open Studies: Not Available

Students will be able to apply codes and standards for the compliant and safe design of alternative energy systems. Additional processes such as permitting and the application of appropriate standards will also be discussed. Students will also be able to compare and contrast the safety regulations and legislation in various jurisdictions.

ALTE2253BAlternative Energy Project Part II
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Prerequisites: ALTE2253A, PMGT2205.
  • Course Equivalencies: ALT253B
  • Open Studies: Not Available

In the second semester of the Alternative Energy Capstone course (ALTE2253) the students focus on applying their knowledge of alternative energy technologies and their project management skills to a related scientific, social or technological problem or opportunity. Students will also build and manage high performance teams, execute a project, use effective oral and written presentation skills and plan their career.

ALTE2254Energy Audit and Energy Management
  • Requisites: This course is available to students in the Alternative Energy Technology program. Prerequisites: ALTE2201, ALTE2204.
  • Open Studies: Not Available

Energy management is the proactive, organized and systematic coordination of procurement, conversion, distribution and use of energy to meet the objectives of resource conservation, climate protection and cost savings. In this course students will develop the skills needed to evaluate the energy losses of residential, commercial, or industrial buildings, process and/or systems to mitigate energy inefficiencies. Learners are taught different levels or types of energy audits and related procedures for residential, commercial, and industrial buildings audits. Students will learn the basic principles of energy management as they relate to energy audit short falls, energy system planning, energy policy development, pre- and post-deployment system auditing, energy savings and cost reduction strategies for residential, commercial, or industrial buildings, communities and businesses.

Tuition

Cost Per Credit: $223
Tuition Cap: $2,085

Tuition for International Students

Cost Per Credit: $702
Tuition Cap: $6,568

Mandatory Fees

NAITSA: $129
U-Pass: $175
Health & Dental: $128
Rec. & Athletics: $70

Pay Your Tuition & Fees
How much will first year cost?

Books, Supplies & Program Fees (est.)

Level 1 Term 1: $1,050
Level 1 Term 2: $1,050
Level 2 Term 1: $300
Level 2 Term 2: $300

Dates & Deadlines

We recommend submitting your program application at least 90 days before the application deadline.

Application Deadline: Sep 03, 2019

Term Start Date: Sep 03, 2019

Program Availability Status:  

Domestic Applicants: WL
International Applicants: WL

Entrance Requirements

Apply to Program

Apply to the program with step-by-step instructions on how to complete the application process. Please note, processing time may vary for applicants, so we recommend starting early.

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International Students

This program is open to international applicants. For more detailed information about applying, visit our admissions page. Learn more

Legend

Term Definition
Open Program still has seats available.
Waitlisting Program is full and qualified applicants are being placed on a waitlist. For information about waitlists, please visit the Waitlist FAQs.

If you’re on a non-competitive waitlist, you should consider NAIT’s Academic Upgrading program or NAIT Equivalency Tests to become a more competitive applicant.

There is no guarantee that waitlisted applicants will be offered a seat, however it is common for seats to become available until the start of class. As seats become available, they are filled from the waitlist.
Closed Program is no longer accepting applications.
N/A Not available for this term.


*Program availabilty is subject to change without notice.

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