Chemical engineering department in IIT Delhi offers two programs: B.Tech program and a Dual degree program. There is only a little difference between the two and that has been discussed later.
First and foremost, chemical engineering does not deal with chemistry at large, a perception that most people have. Chemistry is a branch of science that deals with studying reactions at lab scale while through chemical engineering you take that reaction and produce chemical at large scale. Very small amount of chemistry is taught in first year and these courses are common for all departments.
Chemical engineering has a very very wide scope and can be broadly classified into following:
1) Transport Phenomenon
2) Chemical Reaction Engineering
3) Fluid Particle Mechanics
4) Process Technology and Economics
5) Design Applications
First don’t be afraid of these technical terms mentioned, you will understand them during your course.
Transport phenomenon basically deals with mass, momentum and heat transfer. It is in a crude way a detailed analysis of elementary topics that you take in your JEE preparations like Bernoulli’s theorem, Heat conduction through slabs etc.
Chemical reaction engineering deals with the chemical reactor, which is the heart of a chemical industry. As a chemical engineer you will the Pressure, Temperature, Volume of the reactor while a mechanical engineer will tell you the thickness of the reactor vessel. In this branch only you also learn to design a catalyst i.e. the radius of the catalyst, the life of catalyst etc.
Fluid Particle mechanics deals with systems where particles start coming into picture with the fluids for example, a particle falling in a viscous liquid. You must have read in you JEE preparation about the terminal velocities of single spherical particles but here you will read about non-spherical particles, multi-particle systems. This branch hence becomes important for powders and hence opens a whole range of options to study.
Process Technology and Economics is the par that deals with layout of the plant and its economic analysis. As a chemical engineer you might analyse the various steps of a process (like sulphuric acid production) and might advise the company to change the Pressure, Temperature to improve the performance.
Design applications mainly deal with sizing up of the various parts of the industry like heater exchangers, boilers etc.
During your stay you can learn a lot of softwares because they are becoming increasingly important. If you are really very interested in coding, chemical engineering has A LOT to offer you.
The faculty in chemical engineering department is very good and recently many talented young professors have joined the department. The professors are in general pretty interactive and you can learn a lot from them (With a few exceptions, ofcourse). Courses in general are pretty interesting. The whole learning process includes an aptitude for mathematics, and some curiousity! All the topics and the subjects are taught well in depth, and from the basics. The courses are moderately heavy and some of them are definitely one of the best in IIT.
Core job(which use chemical engineering) prospects of chemical engineering are pretty good and you may end up in a field like bio-pharma, petroleum production, catalysis development etc. in a company like HUL, ITC, Proctor and Gamble, Reliance, IOCL etc. Core jobs do not pay you that much like the consultancies and finance companies do, so many of the people prefer non-core jobs as well. The placements for non-core jobs are more dependent on the student’s performance during his stay rather than the department he is in.
Research prospects of chemical engineering are very bright because of the increasing environmental problems and need for alternative fuels for energy both of which are primarily the field of a chemical engineer.
Electrical Power vs Chemical vs Production and Industrial vs MCA: This is also a doubt that student face while filling choices for the counselling. In my opinion, prefer MCA because it is a good course, then it your choice to fill in for Electrical Power because it has very few seats and not a lot is known about this branch, between chemical and production, if you are really interested in mechanical then you can choose production else chemical should be preferred.
For Dual Degree students:
All the courses for the dual degree students are same as that of the B.Tech program, just that a dual degree student has to do some more courses during his stay. The job prospects are similar as a large part of students prefer non-core jobs over the core jobs.