Materials Research Activities

Materials science courses at Harvard University, 1994-2000

Materials science courses at Harvard University, 1994-2000

These are the handouts for Materials Chemistry and Physics courses, suitable for graduate students with undergraduate concentrations in chemistry, engineering or physics. They have kindly been put at our disposal by Professor Henry Ehrenreich of Harvard University. Behind each link is a jpeg reproduction.

One might note some developments with time and so get a sense of the development of the field. An overview with that aim will be given in the following. Of course the narrow focus upon Harvard renders this highly unreliable as a general indicator. More such overviews from other teaching institutions would be desirable. If you have any such material and would like to contribute it to this site, please contact Arne Hessenbruch.

Still, some changes will presumably be quite general. For example, strength and fracture disappeared after 1994, which is in tune with the general waning of the importance of metallurgy. Similarly, the introduction in 1998 of a bio-component is consonant with the general development since the late 1990s.

The structure of the course is announced as consisting of four segments, taken from the following menu:

  • optical and electronic properties
  • mechanical properties
  • surfaces and interfaces
  • nanoscale phenomena
  • synthesis and fabrication
  • characterization techniques
  • solid state devices and structural applications (not mentioned in 1994)

In actual fact, some segments were taught that do not fit into this menu. These were the segments actually taught:

  • 1994: Surfaces and interfaces, synthesis and fabrication, strength and fracture, optical and electronic properties.
  • 1996: nanostructures, optical and electronic and properties, interfaces and defects, and mechanics of interfaces. (A fifth segment was taught but not considered a major topic of the course: processing and manufacturing.)
  • 1998: nanosystems, fluids, interfaces and defects, and biosystems.
  • 2000: Soft condensed matter, micromechanical systems, biological systems and nanostructures.

This page was last updated by Arne Hessenbruch on 4 May 2004.