Energy Systems Engineering

solar panels, wind turbines, and an electricity transmission tower in front of the sun rising into a blue sky with puffy clouds

Energy systems are central to the functioning of our society.
Our economy and way of life is built around access to affordable and reliable energy. At the same time, climate change, greenhouse gas reduction, and energy security and equity are increasingly urgent concerns.

Energy systems engineers help address some of the most pressing problems facing humanity today. Whether for transportation, heating, manufacturing, or lighting, energy systems are critical infrastructure. Exciting new technologies continue to increase efficiency and improve energy management, but they have also created very complex and varied systems with their own unique challenges.

In EngSci's Energy Systems Engineering major, students learn to tackle urgent technical issues in energy generation, storage, transmission, and distribution, while gaining an understanding of environmental, public policy, and economic impacts.

The curriculum focuses on developing experts for the energy sector and beyond through fundamental technical training in multidisciplinary courses. Topics covered include clean energy, sustainability, thermodynamics, control systems, and electric drives.

The major provides the breadth, depth and interdisciplinary knowledge required in the highly complex energy sector. Students learn to evaluate trade‐offs between different traditional and alternative technologies, explore technical aspects within a societal context, examine links to conservation and sustainable development, and gain a rigorous foundation relevant to many energy topics.

Courses are taught by renowned faculty members from the Departments of Mechanical & Industrial Engineering, Electrical & Computer Engineering, Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry, and U of T's Institute for Sustainable Energy.  An exciting new development in the Toronto area is the establishment of the new NRC Advanced Materials Research Facility, where energy researchers will be engaged with clean energy research.

The Energy Systems Engineering major meets the need for more experts in this field in Ontario, Canada and around the world. It prepares graduates with for exciting careers in technology development, energy companies, and policy agencies.  Graduates have gone onto specialized technical research careers, systems engineering in energy distribution companies, and have specialized in energy policy with career trajectories in government.


Did you know...?

Students can explore energy topics in student clubs like IEEE's U of T Branch and the Sustainable Engineers Association.

Find more
student clubs here.

Sample Courses

Where this major can take you

Graduates have internationally unique training with the depth and breadth required to seamlessly pivot within academia, industry, and government. Meet some of our alumni.

Employers for recent graduates include Boston Consulting Group, Hatch, IESO, Ontario Power Authority, Shoppers Drug Mart, Toronto Hydro, and others.  Some are also working in energy policy in government agencies and consulting groups.

Recent alumni have attended graduate school at Johns Hopkins University, MIT, Stanford University, U of T, UC Berkeley, and more.


Professor Bilton wearing a black blazer, shirt and slacks, leaning on a pale wooden railing on a concrete wall

Chair of the Energy Systems Engineering major

Professor Amy Bilton (MIE)

Professor Bilton is the Director of the Center for Global Engineering and recipient of the 2023 U of T Global Educator Award. She is an EngSci alumna (0T4 Aero). She is an expert on water purification and desalination systems and renewable energy for sustainable use in the developing world.