This is an archived course. A more recent version may be available at

Archived Versions

Sustainable Energy

As taught in: Spring 2005

.A photograph of wind turbines at Tehachapi, California
Wind turbines at Tehachapi, California. (Image courtesy of the  U.S. Department of Energy, from their Digital Archive.)


Dr. Elisabeth Drake

Prof. Jefferson W. Tester

Prof. Michael Golay

MIT Course Number:

10.391J / 1.818J / 2.65J / 3.564J / 11.371J / 22.811J / ESD.166J



Course Features

Course Description

The assessment of current and potential future energy systems is covered in this course and includes topics on resources, extraction, conversion, and end-use, with emphasis on meeting regional and global energy needs in the 21st century in a sustainable manner. Different renewable and conventional energy technologies will be presented and their attributes described within a framework that aids in evaluation and analysis of energy technology systems in the context of political, social, economic, and environmental goals.

Detailed information on the course textbook can be found here: Tester, J. W., E. M. Drake, M. W. Golay, M. J. Driscoll, and W. A. Peters. Sustainable Energy - Choosing Among Options. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2005. ISBN: 0262201534.

*Some translations represent previous versions of courses.