Materials Science and Engineering MSc

You will study 180 credits in total during your Materials Science and Engineering MSc. A standard module is typically worth 15 credits and the research project is worth 60 credits. These are the modules studied in 2019. If you are starting in September 2020, these will give you a flavour of the modules you are likely to study. All modules are subject to change.

Compulsory modules

Research project - 60 credits
You will undertake a research project during the summer months.
Recent projects include:
  • Microstructure development in drop-tube processed cast iron
  • Validation of cooling rate models of drop-tube processing
  • Characterisation of graphite nanoplatelets (GNPs) produced by solvent exfoliation of graphite.
Phase Transformations and Microstructural Control - 15 credits 
Microstructure is not an intrinsic property of a material – it can be modified by judicious choice of processing route. In this module, the relationship of microstructural evolution to thermodynamic and kinetic principles will be quantitatively examined across all materials classes.
Structure-Property Relationships - 15 credits 
Structure-property relationships are at the heart of materials science and metallurgy. This module provides a secure theoretical understanding of the mechanisms whereby a materials’ microstructure determines its mechanical, physical and chemical behaviour.
Materials Selection and Failure Analysis - 15 credits 
Selecting the right material and process for a particular application is key to successful engineering design. This module looks a range of different approaches to optimising the selection process and at how forensic engineering may be employed to identify the causes of failures in service.
Materials Structures and Characterisation - 15 credits
Because of the importance of microstructure for a material’s properties, the ability to determine this on all scales is essential. This module examines materials microstructures and how they may be represented and provides a comprehensive theoretical and practical understanding of the techniques used to characterise these.

Optional modules

Team Design Project - 15 credits 
This module is designed to provide the skills and practical experience necessary to enable professional engineers to contribute to major industrial multidisciplinary design team projects.
Materials Modelling - 15 credits
If you already hold an accredited engineering degree at bachelor or Masters level, you will study this module, which examines the theory, application and significance of process simulation and modelling in materials science and engineering.
Materials for Photonic Applications - 15 credits 
This module is to provide students with a very clear understanding of the technological, engineering and commercial challenges underpinning the use of materials in the production of advanced photonic devices.
Materials for Electronic Applications - 15 credits
This module is to provide students with a very clear understanding of the technological, engineering and commercial challenges underpinning the use of materials in the production of advanced electronic devices.
Nanomaterials - 15 credits 
This module provides a knowledge and understanding of the principles and practice governing a variety of preparative techniques which may be employed for the production of nanoparticles and bulk nanocrystalline and nanocomposite materials.
Biomaterials and Applications - 15 credits 
This module provides a knowledge and understanding of the requirements of materials and their stability in a biological environment. The relevance of this to materials selection, design and properties of medical implants and devices and to understanding the biological processes is demonstrated.
Metals and Alloys - 15 credits
This module provides an in-depth understanding of the principles of physical metallurgy and the application of the processing-microstructure-property relationships to the design of ferrous and non-ferrous alloys for engineering applications.
Ceramics, Polymers and Composites - 15 credits 
This module builds on the fundamental principles of materials science covered earlier in the course and applies and extends this to understanding the design of conventional and advanced ceramics, polymers and composite materials for structural applications.
Process Metallurgy - 15 credits
This module quantitatively examines the range of conventional, contemporary and future techniques for the processing of metals and alloys, with a particular focus on microstructural control. Solidification processing, metalworking, machining, joining, surface treatment and powder metallurgy are covered in detail, together with an evaluation of other, contemporary, niche or developing processes.
Extractive Metallurgy - 15 credits
This module provides students with an understanding of the physical chemistry of metal extraction and refining processes in ferrous, nonferrous and refractory metals.
This module helps to develop an understanding of the properties, behaviour and characterisation of soft matter and provides knowledge on main techniques for studying structure and dynamics in soft matter. 
This module introduces how concepts from physics help understand how biological systems function, from molecules and their nanoscale assemblies to cells and tissues.