MTE6881 - Advanced materials characterisation and applied crystallography - 2017

0 points, SCA Band 2, 0.000 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

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



Organisational Unit

Department of Materials Science and Engineering


Assoc Professor Philip Nakashima

Unit guides



  • Second semester 2017 (Day)


This unit is available only to Engineering PhD students.


The scattering of different types of radiation from crystalline materials gives fundamental insight into materials properties at various length scales, beginning with atomic structure and culminating in interatomic bonding. The unit will be taught as a series of modules covering essential knowledge in each area of diffraction (X-ray diffraction, electron diffraction, and neutron diffraction), including a solid coverage of crystallography and how it is applied in all of the characterisation techniques that reside within each of these areas of diffraction.

The unit explores the complementarity of the different techniques and radiations through strategically aligned laboratory classes. The data collected in each lab session, from different experiments and instruments, will be combined throughout the course of the unit with the aim of solving a real materials science problem that is of current interest or a hot topic.

Approximately 50% of this unit is based on the flipped classroom, and data analysis from laboratory sessions will be carried out in workshop-style tutorial sessions using the knowledge and instruction gained from the online modules.


On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  • judge the characterisation technique best suited to answer particular material property questions
  • recognise the limitations of what can ben learnt from different techniques based on specimen and instrumental limitations
  • design experiments to enhance the characterisation of a material
  • appraise the current state-of-the-art of emerging characterisation techniques
  • devise strategies to combine techniques to obtain optimum information about material properties
  • formulate ways to optimally prepare specimen for each characterisation technique.


Continuous assessment: 50%

Examination (2 hours): 50%

Students are required to achieve at least 45% in the total continuous assessment component and at least 45% in the final examination component and an overall mark of 50% to achieve a pass grade in the unit.

Workload requirements

4 hours of lectures/tutorials/workshops, 1 hour of laboratory work and 7 hours of private study per week.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)