Course content overview

Second year

Track 1: Water Resources and Land Protection

The courses are taught in English, except where "(taught in Italian)" is specified.

Courses for track Water Resources and Land Protection
Course Learning goals ECTS
River engineering
(taught in Italian)
The course focusses on river morphodynamics and planning and design of river regulation and restoration works and hydraulic risk mitigation structures. The module combines an overview of the morphodynamical processes that defines the river geometry, at the different spatial scales, and the evolutionary trajectories due to natural and anthropogenic forcings, with a suite of the most common types of intervention and works for hydraulic defense and management of water and sediment fluxes. The course includes an applied part that consists in the drafting of a river engineering project. 12
Atmospheric physics and modelling The course provides an in-depth analysis of atmospheric processes relevant for various applications of environmental engineering. In particular, the main topics covered include synoptic scale atmospheric dynamics at mid-latitudes, mesoscale phenomena in mountain areas and atmospheric boundary-layer processes. Large space is dedicated to the applications of these notions, with particular regard to the modelling tools for weather forecasting, air pollution simulations and the assessment of renewable energies.   6
Stability of natural slopes and earth constructions
(taught in Italian)
The course provides students with the basis for the stability analysis of natural, soil and rock, slopes and earthworks (cutting slopes and embankments). The course includes the following topics: planning of in-situ and laboratory tests for evaluating the mechanical and hydraulic properties affecting slope stability; performing stability analyses; identifying the rupture mechanism; designing the monitoring system for evaluating stability conditions; selecting the most convenient stabilization method.   6
Hydraulic hazards in mountain areas (taught in Italian) The course aims to provide a phenomenological and modeling approach to natural hazards of hydraulic origin affecting mountain areas, such as intense solid transport phenomena, debris flows and snow avalanches. It also intends to train the students in the use of advanced numerical modeling tools for back analysis, hazard mapping and design of protection plans, as well as to provide calculation techniques and tools for designing mitigation works. The course is completed by some hints on civil protection topics. 6
Integrated water resources management
(taught in Italian)
The course aims to provide the students with techniques and mathematical tools used in the planning, design and management of water resources in a context of increasing anthropogenic pressure and climate change. The course will focus its attention on the hydraulic infrastructures present in river networks and on water supply systems. At the end of the course the students will be able to: i) quantify the availability of water resources in river networks and aquifers; and ii) understand the operating principles of the studied hydraulic infrastructures as well as to master the calculation methods that allow the design of such works. 6
Ecohydraulics The course focuses on the interactions among morphology, flow and the biotic component of the fluvial ecosystem, providing students with tools to integrate environmental quality with hydraulic safety in river management, in line with European and national directives. A suite of quantitative approaches to the evaluation and modelling of the morphological quality, habitat availability for target species and the interactions between river morphodynamics and riparian vegetation are explored. Real-world applications refer to the design of environmental flows and river restoration projects. 6
Seminars Seminar activities 3
Final exam Thesis and final exam preparation 15

 

Track 2: Environmental Quality and Remediation Technologies 

Track 2: Environmental Quality and Remediation Technologies
Course Learning goals ECTS
Design of water and wastewater treatment plants
(taught in Italian)
The course covers the theoretical foundation of processes involved in wastewater treatment systems, including qualitative and quantitative wastewater characterization. The students learn how to plan and design the preliminary and primary treatment systems, the biological stages and the treatment and disposal of bio-solids, including physical, chemical and biological processes. The course will also focus on water treatment plants to produce drinking water. After completing this course, students will be able to design, operate and manage wastewater treatment plants in order to meet the effluent requirements and how to combine different treatment processes for the production of drinking water. 12
Emerging pollutants and remediation strategies
(taught in Italian)
In the first part, the course will provide knowledge on sustainability and pollution in the gaseous, liquid and solid state. It will deal with Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) applied to materials and processes. The emerging pollutants will be studied from the point of view of their chemical nature, diffusion, solubilization and mixing characteristics. Analytical techniques for the evaluation of the type and quantity of pollutants will be presented, also through the discussion of real cases of pollution. In the second part, the engineering approaches to the resolution of real cases of air pollution, waterways and land will be treated, with particular attention to decision-making strategies. 6
Contaminant remediation engineering The course provides the students with the skills needed to design remediation and management systems of contaminated sites. The first part of the course deals with the study of the movement of water and the transport of contaminants in the earth subsurface. The second part deals with risk analysis, followed by the design of remediation technologies of contaminated sites (soil and groundwater). Attention will be given also to the design of monitoring  systems and groundwater extraction technologies. 6
Design of urban hydraulic infrastructures
(taught in Italian)
The course aims to provide the engineering students the elements necessary for a proper designing and management of the water supply systems and the urban drainage networks in a context of climate change.  The course which is design/application based, is organized in a series of lessons and analysis of real case studies, that illustrate the main aspects for a sustainable management of the water resources in urban areas. Particular attention will be given to the new mitigation-restoration approaches that propose the use of best management practices (“green” and “blue” infrastructures). 6
Design of integrated systems for material recovery from municipal solid waste
(taught in Italian)
Basic knowledge is transferred to size the plants that characterize the sector in terms of material recovery from municipal solid waste. Methodologies are provided for characterizing waste and tools for dimensioning a sustainable system based on the principle of urban mining, including collection strategies. In addition to design criteria for biochemical and mechanical processes, the bases are provided for the design of landfills (and their remediation with material recovery). 6
Design of facilities for energy recovery from waste Basic knowledge is transferred to size the facilities that characterize the sector in terms of energy recovery from waste. Design examples of plants for the production of energy from anaerobic digestion and gasification of special waste are developed. Finally, the criteria for sizing landfill biogas recovery systems are provided. 6
Seminars Seminar activities 3
Final exam Thesis and final exam preparation 15

 

Track 3: Environmental Sustainability and International Cooperation

The courses are taught in English, except where "taught in Italian" is specified.

Courses for track Environmental Sustainability and International Cooperation
Course Learning goals ECTS
Engineering for International Sustainable Development: Methods and Project Work The course (2 modules) introduces to different approaches in applying sustainable development in the international context. It examines the contexts (geopolitical, institutional, historical, economic, technological), with the links between environment/climate change and poverty/inequality, and global/local agendas for SD. Then it analyses different implementation methods adopted by a wide range of stakeholders. It adds techniques for: participatory planning, management of environmental conflicts, anthropological analysis (module 1). Then (module 2) it faces an environmental project in a real territory context. Carried on in partnership with international/local actors, it culminates in a field mission, prepared both at technical and project management level. Students learn: to apply their theoretical knowledge to the project, to interact with several public/private actors, to manage projects in multicultural and interdisciplinary contexts. 12
Water and sediment management for sustainable development Focus on the water-sediment-development nexus from global to local scales in different geographical contexts. Students learn: (1) how human development affects and is affected by changing water uses and related sediment processes; (2) to use engineering tools to quantify water uses and to design sustainable technical solutions. Topics: WASH: water supply in developing rural or suburban areas; environmental effects of human water and sediment uses; soil, coastal erosion, floods, river management in developing countries; Irrigation systems design and water needs. 6
Near-zero-energy technologies for waste and sanitation The module aims at teaching the basic knowledge to plan and design the collection, treatment and disposal systems of human excreta both wet and dry (with low-cost and almost zero-energy hygienic-sanitary technologies and with material recovery where possible) and municipal solid waste in the contexts of international cooperation, referring to the principles of environmental sustainability. Differentiated skills are provided for low- and middle-income countries. The intervention scenarios are distinguished between urban and rural. For the aforementioned areas, criteria for the management of special waste and industrial wastewater are also transferred. 6
Nature-based solutions for urban sustainability The course covers the principles of sustainable development in urban areas, with a focus on the role of nature-based solutions (NbS) for more livable, resilient and healthier cities. Students will learn to analyze the supply and demand of urban ecosystem services; to plan and design NbS targeted to specific challenges and contexts; and to assess their environmental and socio-economic impacts using suitable methods and tools. Current thinking and experiences in cities around the world will be compared and discussed. 6
Applied ecology Through the analysis of concrete cases, the course explores ecology to provide the skills and tools for understanding the environment that are essential for ecological design and planning. Case studies are presented both on a local scale in the mountain area and on a global scale with particular reference to sustainable development, biodiversity loss and food chain pollution. Topics include deforestation, ecotoxycology, ecological modelling, GIS, ecosystem services, climate change, food production, biomonitoring, biological invasions. 6
Renewable energies The course provides engineering skills for the design of renewable plants such as solar thermal and photovoltaic plants, geothermal and biomass facilities including conventional and innovative processes such as gasification. A relevant part of the course will be oriented to analyze the integration of the investigated renewable resources and plants including the evaluations of the economical assessments and their impact in reducing emissions compared to the conventional fossil fuels. 6
Seminars Seminar activities 3
Final exam Thesis and final exam preparation 15

 

Track 4: Modelling and Simulation

Courses for track Modelling and Simulation
Course Learning goals ECTS
Advanced environmental modelling and applications The course deals with the real-world applications of advanced numerical methods for environmental fluid mechanics. In the first part, the focus is on methods for hyperbolic PDE (hydraulics on mobile bed) and nonlinear parabolic equations (heat equation; Richards equation for the flow in porous media), finite element methods for linear elliptic equations (with applications to solid and fluid mechanics), and on the parallelization necessary for the application to complex problems. In the second part, the numerical methods are implemented for complex transport processes, with real-world applications to: turbulence modelling; stratified flows; jets and plumes; air and water quality models. The course contains practical hands-on sessions in the computer laboratory. 12
Atmospheric physics and modelling The course provides an in-depth analysis of atmospheric processes relevant for various applications of environmental engineering. In particular, the main topics covered include synoptic scale atmospheric dynamics at mid-latitudes, mesoscale phenomena in mountain areas and atmospheric boundary-layer processes. Large space is dedicated to the applications of these notions, with particular regard to the modelling tools for weather forecasting, air pollution simulations and the assessment of renewable energies.   6
Contaminant remediation engineering The course provides the students with the skills needed to design remediation and management systems of contaminated sites. The first part of the course deals with the study of the movement of water and the transport of contaminants in the earth subsurface. The second part deals with risk analysis, followed by the design of remediation technologies of contaminated sites (soil and groundwater). Attention will be given also to the design of monitoring  systems and groundwater extraction technologies. 6
Ecohydraulics The course focuses on the interactions among morphology, flow and the biotic component of the fluvial ecosystem, providing students with tools to integrate environmental quality with hydraulic safety in river management, in line with European and national directives. A suite of quantitative approaches to the evaluation and modelling of the morphological quality, habitat availability for target species and the interactions between river morphodynamics and riparian vegetation are explored. Real-world applications refer to the design of environmental flows and river restoration projects. 6
Seminars Seminar activities 3
Final exam Thesis and final exam preparation 15

 

Track 4 Elective courses: 2 electives have to be chosen for a total of 12 ECTS. List of elective courses is still being defined
Course Learning goals ECTS
Applied Machine Learning The course objective is to give to the student a general idea on how to develop a machine learning system. The course will cover aspects related to the model architecture, data collection and processing, until the deployment of the system. At the end of the course, the student is expected to be able to evaluate the feasibility of a simple machine learning project and he will be able to manage it deployment in all its phases. Theoretical lectures will be alternated with hands-on exercises in python. 6
Turbulence in environmental flows The course is held as intensive course during 2 weeks Turbulence is one of the last mysteries, not yet fully understood, in nonlinear fluid mechanics (including multiphase flows). In this course, we provide an introduction to turbulence by coupling the analysis of the most used numerical models (e.g., k-epsilon model) and the interpretation of real-world measurements, with a special focus on processes occurring in the atmosphere and in stratified water bodies such as lakes. The course covers theoretical and numerical aspects of turbulence modelling and introduces the necessary statistical tools for the analysis of data from turbulence observations both in the field and in the laboratory. 6
Studying the Soil-Plant-Atmosphere Continuum with process-based model  The course is held as intensive course during 2 weeks 6
Aggiornato il
27 July 2022