Faculty of Engineering

Monash University

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2012 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Engineering
OfferedClayton First semester 2012 (Day)
Sunway First semester 2012 (Day)
Clayton Second semester 2012 (Day)
Sunway Second semester 2012 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Assoc Professor J S Forsythe/Dr Don Rodrigo (Clayton); Dr Pooria Pasbakhsh (Sunway)


Key concepts in the design, selection and application of materials. Attributes such as stiffness (modulus), strength, toughness, chemical stability, electrical, magnetic, and thermal properties will be explained in terms of atomic bonding, crystal defects, polycrystalline microstructure and material flaws. Case studies will include a broad range of materials such as carbon nano tubes, microchips, reinforced concrete, biomaterials, suspension bridge, and aerospace components, all used in a diverse range of engineering applications.


On successful completion of this unit students will:

  1. appreciate the influence of atomic structure, bonding and nano/microstructures have on some physical properties
  2. have an understanding of different materials responses to forces and stresses
  3. have an understanding of the basic mechanical properties, principally elastic modulus and yield stress, and be able to use these as design criteria
  4. be familiar with processes occurring during plastic deformation and to draw upon these concepts in order to know how to strengthen the material
  5. know how to tailor the mechanical properties of a polymeric material using control over crystallinity and the glass transition
  6. understand the role of composite materials in engineering, and their responses to applied stresses
  7. understand the processes involved during fracture and have a broad understanding of how fracture can be avoided by appropriate selection of materials and design
  8. have a basic understanding of the thermal, electrical and magnetic properties of materials in terms of the atomic and electronic characteristics of materials and to use these criteria for material selection
  9. understand the processes of corrosion and degradation in the environment and to draw upon these to increase the lifetime through appropriate protection and material selection
  10. be able to select an appropriate material for a given application based on the above points
  11. appreciate the socio-political and sustainability issues influencing material selection, commonly experienced as a professional engineer
  12. have become familiar with the resources of a library for acquiring information of specific interest to a materials engineer
  13. have gained basic laboratory skills applied to study the microstructure and physical properties of materials
  14. have an ability to communicate within a team in carrying out laboratory work
  15. have an ability to keep accurate laboratory records and to prepare a formal report on an experiment


Examination (2 hours): 50%
Laboratory work: 20%
Assignments: 10%
Tests: 20%

Chief examiner(s)

Professor George Simon

Contact hours

Three 1-hour lecture/practice classes, one 2-hour laboratory class and 7 hours private study per week


VCE Mathematical methods 3/4 (or equivalent) recommended.


ENG1501, MSC1010