NKEB23002U Materials Chemistry (MatKem)

Volume 2024/2025

BSc Programme in Chemistry
BSc Programme in Nanoscience
MSc Programme in Biotechnology with a minor subject


Solid state materials chemistry lies at the heart of many significant scientific advances from recent decades, for example the development of Li-ion batteries and other technologies for green and sustainable energy. The course introduces fundamental aspects of solid state chemistry and focuses on understanding the relation between atomic structure and material properties in solid state compounds.

Topics include:

  • The structure of solid state materials: Important crystal structures of metals, ionic compounds, and molecular network compounds. Defects in crystal structures and their influence on material properties
  • Bonding in solids
  • Characterization of solid state materials: X-ray and neutron scattering, powder diffraction and Rietveld refinement, X-ray spectroscopy, electron microscopy
  • Ionic diffusion in materials; structure/property relations in materials for Li- and Na-ion batteries, fuel cells, and other electrochemical devices
  • Electrical properties of materials: Conductivity, superconductivity, piezo- and ferroelectric materials
  • Magnetic materials, their structure and properties
  • Optical properties of solid state materials
  • Synthesis of solid state materials
  • The use and need for materials for green and sustainable energy solutions.
Learning Outcome

Following the course, the student will be able to:


  • Explain structure/property relations in important functional materials. e.g. for technologies for green and sustainable energy.
  • Compare different methods of analysis and explain their use in a given situation
  • Explain the principles and physical background of the most important characterization techniques in solid state chemistry
  • Critically read research papers in materials chemistry



  • Use structural databases and visualizations software to describe the structure of important functional materials
  • Perform Rietveld refinements of PXRD data.
  • Extract structural information from data from various characterization methods



  • Describe the structure of important crystal structures
  • Describe the bonding in solids, and relate to material properties
  • Describe the importance and influence of defects in crystal structures
  • Describes important material synthesis methods
  • Describe ionic diffusion in materials
  • Describe magnetic and electrical properties of materials
  • Descibe the use and need for materials for green and sustainable energy solutions

See Absalon for a list of course literature”. 

It is expected that the students are familiar with the content of the courses MatIntro, KemiU1, KemiU2, KemiBin or similar.
Lectures, exercises and written assignments, student presentations, and written project work
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 40
  • Preparation
  • 100
  • Theory exercises
  • 40
  • Project work
  • 25
  • Exam
  • 1
  • Total
  • 206
Continuous feedback during the course of the semester
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Oral examination, 25 min (no preperation time)
Type of assessment details
Oral exam on the contents of the course, no preparation time.
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
Several internal examiners

Similar to the ordinary exam. 

Criteria for exam assesment

See learning outcome.