Atmosphere, Water and Environment (U-ENV AWE)

Programme Objectives
This Master offers a world-class education to future engineers and town planners by providing the skills necessary to address environmental and health issues in the context of sustainable urban development, in research and in urban engineering.

The programme is designed to provide the scientific theoretical knowledge and tools necessary to understand and address the environmental physical problems resulting from the ever increasing urban population. Various key disciplines such as urban hydrology, urban atmosphere, building heat transfer and pollution of air water and soils are taught through advanced lectures and research work in laboratories renowned in these fields.

The Master programme is fully recognized by the French Ministry of Higher Education and the network of contacts established by the researchers engaged in the programme guarantees international exposure for the students.

The programme of study lasts two academic years - denoted by M1 and M2 - and is taught in English.
Course Content

30 ECTS Credits per semester.
Language of instruction: English

M1 Year - 2022/23
Autumn Semester Courses ECTS  Spring Semester Courses  ECTS
Fluid mechanics 1  5 Hydrology and transfers in soils  5
Algorithmics for Engineering Modelling  4 Introduction to Computational Fluid Dynamics  5
Energetics and building heat transfers  5 Urban Realities Review  5
Introduction to Geographic Information Sciences  5 Urban Management and Planning  4
Introduction to research  5 Fluid Mechanics 2  5
Business Environment  4 Environmental Data Analysis  4
Modern Languages *  2 Modern Languages *  2
Conferences  0

* 'French as Foreign Language' except for French native speakers who will study 'Cultural and Communicational English'
NB Course content may be subject to minor changes
M2 Year - 2022/23
Autumn Semester Courses ECTS
Turbulence: theory, modelling and analysis 5
Meteorology & atmospheric boundary layers 4
Urban pollution 5
Urban water management and modelling 5
Urban climate and energy 5
Case studies in the urban environment 4
Modern languages * 2
Conferences 0

* 'French as Foreign Language' except for French native speakers who will study 'Cultural and Communicational English'
NB Course content may be subject to minor changes
Spring Semester ECTS
Master thesis / internship                                                    30

Examples of previous internships in industry:

  • adaptation of regional planning with regard to urban heat islands
  • integration of urban micro-climate into energy simulation studies of buildings

Examples of previous internships in research labs:

  • Analysis of fluid exchange between a street canyon flow and the atmospheric boundary layer
  • Application of model reduction to the thermal modeling of urban surfaces
Skills developed
  • Understand the physics and dynamics of fluids in urban environments
  • Master analytical and modelling tools for hydrology and atmospheric sciences in urban environments
  • Learn techniques in water management; soil, water and air treatment, and mitigation of the urban heat island

In addition to the above specialism-specific skills, students will also develop more general skills:

  • Express assumptions to analyse and solve a problem
  • Communicate comprehensive results in a meaningful way
  • Undertake bibliographic surveys of international research and professional literature
  • Manage or be part of a project

Download syllabus | U-ENV AWE 2021/2022

Facilities and Partnerships

Faculty and Research Facilities

This Master relies on Centrale Nantes’ faculty and the School of Architecture of Nantes (Ensa Nantes) staff and the research facilities of the LHEEA Laboratory, the AAU laboratory and the IRSTV (Research Institute on Urban Sciences and Technology)


Centrale Nantes and Ensa Nantes have partnerships with EDF, Veolia, ENERCON, Nantes Métropole, Air Pays de la Loire, CEREMA.
Student Feedback

Read what our graduates have to say about the programme:

Geng Tian, class of 2018


After the Master's

Career Prospects

  • Sectors: urban planning and design; urban environment; energy, soil and water management
  • Fields: urban planning, environmental fluid mechanics, hydrology, microclimatology, air quality
  • Positions: engineer in consulting office or groups specialized in environmental engineering; engineer in urban design and planning office or local authorities; research and academia (post PhD)

Published on March 25, 2017 Updated on November 24, 2022