MTE3546 - Polymers and ceramics 2 - 2019

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - 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

Chief examiner(s)

Professor Neil Cameron


Dr Zhuoran Zeng

Unit guides



  • Second semester 2019 (On-campus)


MTE2541 or MSC2011




MTE3504, MTE3507


The importance of ceramic properties on their manufacturing is highlighted. The mechanical and thermal properties of ceramics, the structure and production of amorphous ceramics and porous ceramics, the glass transition, optical and electrical properties of glass. The mechanical properties of polymers are very dependent on the timescale and temperature and so the structural basis of linear viscoelasticity and time/temperature superposition are discussed. The mechanical properties of elastomers, crosslinking and reinforcement, rubber elasticity and the tear and fatigue of elastomers. The Eyring theory and methods of toughening polymers are discussed.


On successful completion of this course students will be able to:

  1. develop a detailed understanding of the processing methods of ceramics and understand how their properties are controlled by their structure; be able to predict the behaviour of thermosets, elastomers and composites, based on their composition
  2. develop a detailed understanding of the time and temperature dependent mechanical properties of plastics and elastomers, and the mechanisms of deformation and methods of toughening them.


NOTE: From 1 July 2019, the duration of all exams is changing to combine reading and writing time. The new exam duration for this unit is 2 hours and 10 minutes.

Four written assignments: 20%

Practical classes: 20%

Examination (2 hours): 60%

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. Students failing to achieve this requirement will be given a maximum of 45% in the unit.

Workload requirements

Three 1-hour lecture/applied classes and 7 hours of private study per week, and four 5-hours practical classes throughout the semester.

See also Unit timetable information

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study

Materials science