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PX431 - Structure & Dynamics of Solids

  • Module code: PX431
  • Module name: Structure & Dynamics of Solids
  • Department: Physics
  • Credit: 15

Content and teaching | Assessment | Availability

Module content and teaching

Principal aims

The module will build from the third year module PX385 Condensed Matter Physics and address both theoretical concepts and practical techniques used in experimental condensed matter research. Topics covered will include the structural and dynamical properties of solids.

Principal learning outcomes

At the end of the module you should: have a solid understanding of crystal structure; appreciate a range of research topics in materials physics; understand and be able to select appropriate experimental techniques to measure physical properties of materials; be prepared for postgraduate research in the areas studied.

Timetabled teaching activities

30 lecture slots to include a variety of lectures, directed reading and seminars

Departmental link

Other essential notes

Characterising and, where possible, controlling the structure of materials is one the most important areas of research in science. The microscopic structure of a material determines its mechanical strength, its electrical properties and, at surfaces, the way the material interacts with the outside world (for example as a catalyst, in electrical contacts or as it corrodes). The first half of this module looks at the methods for identifying and studying structure. The second half studies how the distribution of charge and current flows affect the structural and electrical properties of insulators and semiconductors.

Module assessment

Assessment group Assessment name Percentage
15 CATS (Module code: PX431-15)
B (Examination only) 2 hour exam - Structure & Dynamics of Solids (Summer) 100%

Module availability

This module is available on the following courses:



Optional Core


  • Undergraduate Physics (BSc MPhys) (F304) - Year 4
  • Undergraduate Mathematics and Physics (BSc MMathPhys) (FG33) - Year 4