Course syllabus
CoursePM: The synthesis, properties and structures of solid state materials (KOO093)
The overall aim of this 7.5 ECTS course is to give a good understanding of the synthesis, structure and properties of inorganic materials in the solid state, and to illustrate various technological applications of such materials. The course is composed of 22 lectures (2 hours each), a project work (as performed in groups of four persons), and 5 laboratory exercises (as performed in groups of two persons).
Contact details
Examiner:
Maths Karlsson – Email: maths.karlsson@chalmers.se, Phone: 031 772 6770
Teachers:
Maths Karlsson – Email: maths.karlsson@chalmers.se
Christine Geers – Email: geersc@chalmers.se
Lars Öhrström – Email: ohrstrom@chalmers.se
Lab assistants:
Elena Naumovska – Email: elenana@chalmers.se
Kanming Shi – Email: kanming@chalmers.se
Vincent Ssenteza – Email: ssenteza@chalmers.se
Lars Öhrström – Email: ohrstrom@chalmers.se
Course literature
Main literature:
Solid State Chemistry 5^{th} ed. (Lesley Smart and Elaine Moore, CRC Press 2021)
Distributed lab compendium
Additional relevant literature:
Inorganic Chemistry 7^{th} ed. (Mark T. Weller, OUP2018)
Characterization Methods in Inorganic Chemistry (Mark T. Weller, OUP 2017)
International Tables for Crystallography, vol. A. (Theo Hahn, Kluwer Academic Publishers)
Learning objectives and syllabus
 Describe a number of common inorganic typestructures, and have an understanding for why certain materials adopt certain typestructures.
 Apply the knowledge about crystal structures and bonding to predict a material’s electrical, magnetic, optical and mechanical properties.
 Explain the importance of closepacking in inorganic chemistry and its relevance to crystal structures and properties of solid materials.
 You should be able to describe how various types of defects affect the properties of a solid material. Also, understand ionic vs. electronic conductivity, conductivity mechanism, role of defects and structure, solid electrolyte, battery, fuel cell, sensor materials.
 Understand the basics in diffraction theory and symmetry relevant for analysing crystalline materials. This means that you should understand Bragg’s law, basic diffraction theory, and symmetry operations and the theory behind absent reflections. From a powder pattern of a cubic crystalline material you should be able to calculate the unit cell dimensions and determine the Bravais lattice type.
 Apply the proper preparative method for the preparation of inorganic materials by using information in the scientific literature. After the preparation you should be able to identify the reaction products, and determine and identify impurities. Based on this information you should be able to develop an improved preparative route in order to obtain pure reaction products.
 Describe and explain common experimental techniques used to characterize solid materials, such as TGA, DSC, IR and Raman spectroscopy, EXAFS, NMR, and SEM.
 Knowledge as well as practical experience of several databases as ICSD, CSD is also something you will obtain. Using graphical software (Diamond) to draw crystal structures from a standard datafile (CIFformat) containing structural data.
Examination form
Written examination at the end of the course. The exam will consist of several questions, which will reflect the content of the course (both what is written in the course material, and what is said during the lectures and lab exercises). The maximum score on the exam will be 60 points.
In addition to the final exam, there will be the opportunity to take a midterm exam (dugga) on September 20. The midterm exam will take 1h30min and will consist of problems related to lectures F111 (see Table 1). The maximum score on the midterm exam will be 15 points, out of which 40% can be added as bonus points to the final exam on October 27 as well as to the reexams in January and August 2024.
Grade thresholds (including bonus points) on the written exam:
For Chalmers (KOO093): grade 3 (30 points), grade 4 (39 points), and grade 5 (48 points)
For GU (KEM150): grade G (30 points), grade VG (45 points)
Passed laboratory exercises, including the passing of experimental lab reports, and a passed project (report + presentation), are also required for passing the course.
Note, the lab reports must be handed in at the deadlines at noted in the lab manual.
Schedule
The course is scheduled to block D, and a list of lectures is given in Table 1.
Please note, the schedule may be subjected to change. Any changes will be communicated through an Announcement.
For an updated schedule, see TimeEdit
Table 1. Timetable for the lectures
Date 
Time 
Room 
Lectures 
Teacher 
30/8 (Wedn) 
08.0009.45 
Zoom 
F1. Course introduction, crystal structures 
Maths K 
1/9 (Friday) 
08.0011.45 
MA 
F2F3. Crystal structures 
Maths K 
5/9 (Tuesday) 
10.0011.45 
MB 
F4. Synthesis 
Lars Ö 
8/9 (Friday) 
08.0011.45 
MB 
F5F6. Bonding in solids 
Maths K 
12/9 (Tuesd) 
08.0011.45 
MB 
F7F8. Diffraction theory + selection of projects 
Christine G 
13/9 (Wedn) 
08.0009.45 
KD2 
F9. Project – structure generation and analysis using the VESTA software 
Christine G 
15/9 (Friday) 
08.0009.45 
KBD41/42 
F10. Project – structure generation and analysis using the VESTA software 
Christine G 
15/9 (Friday) 
10.0011.45 
HC1 
F11 Invited, open, lecture by Omar Yaghi 
Lars Ö. 
20/9 (Wedn) 
08.0009.45 
MB 
F12 Midterm exam 
Maths K 
22/9 (Friday) 
08.0011.45 
MB 
F13F14. Defects and ionic conductivity 
Maths K 
27/9 (Wedn) 
08.0009.45 
MB 
F15. Physical characterization techniques I 
Maths K 
29/9 (Friday) 
08.0009.45 
MB 
F16. Physical characterization techniques II 
Maths K 
3/10 (Tuesd) 
10.0011.45 
MB 
F17. Magnetism and superconductivity 
Lars Ö 
17/10 (Tues) 
08.0011.45 
MB 
Project presentations 
Christine G 
18/10 (Wedn) 
08.0009.00 
MB 
F1819. Structure data bases 
Lars Ö. 
18/10 (Wedn) 
09.0009.45 
MB 
F20. Summary, questions and answers 
Maths K 
2710 (Friday) 
08.3012.30 
Campus 
Written examination 
All 
Laboratory exercises
For the laboratory exercises, you will be divided into groups of two or three persons, and there are five labs in the course; (1) Materials synthesis, (2) Powder Xray diffraction, (3) Scanning electron microscopy, (4) Thermal gravimetric analysis and differential scanning calorimetry, and (5) Singlecrystal Xray diffraction, which are briefly described in the following. Note, not all groups will do the same labs. Table 2 shows a timetable for all labs.
Table 2. Timetable for the labs
Time 
Room 
Lab work 
Teacher 

4/9 (Mond) 
13.1517.00 13.1517.00 13.1517.00 13.1517.00 
KB5106 KB5111 KB5114 
Lab 1. Synthesis Groups 12 Groups 34 Groups 56 
Elena N & Kanming S 
7/9 (Thurs)

08.0011.45 08.0011.45 08.0011.45 08.0011.45 
KB5106 KB5111 KB5114 
Lab 1. Synthesis Groups 78 Groups 910 Groups 1113 
Elena N & Kanming S 
11/9 (Mond) 
13.1517.00 13.1517.00 13.1517.00 13.1517.00 
KB5106 KB5111 KB5114 
Lab 1. Synthesis Groups 1415 Groups 1617 Groups 1820 
Elena N & Kanming S 
14/9 (Thurs)

08.0017.00 08.0010.00 10.0012.00 13.0015.00 15.0017.00 
CMAL

Lab 2. Powder Xray diffraction Groups 13 Groups 46 Groups 79 Groups 1012 
Kanming S

15/9 (Friday)

13.0019.00 13.0015.00 15.0017.00 17.0019.00 
CMAL

Lab 2. Powder Xray diffraction Groups 1315 Groups 1618 Groups 1920 
Kanming S 
19/9 (Tuesd)

08.0016.00 08.0010.00 10.0012.00 14.0016.00 
6017

Lab 3. SEM (LiFePO_{4}) Groups 13 Groups 46 Groups 710 
Vincent S 
21/9 (Thurs)

10.0017.00 10.0011.00 11.0012.00 13.0014.00 14.0015.00 15.0016.00 
6038A

Lab 4. TGA and DSC (Zeolite) Groups 1112 Groups 1314 Groups 1516 Groups 1718 Groups 1920 
Elena N

2/10 (Mond)

14.0018.00 14.0015.00 15.0016.00 16.0017.00 17.0018.00 
CMAL

Lab 5. Singlecrystal Xray diffraction Groups 1920 Groups 1618 Groups 79 Groups 1012 
Lars Ö & Kanming S 
3/10 (Tuesd)

13.0016.00 13.0014.00 14.0015.00 15.0016.00 
CMAL

Lab 5. Singlecrystal Xray diffraction Groups 1315 Groups 46 Groups 13 
Lars Ö & Kanming S 