Fundamental Physical Chemistry
In this module you'll cover units, quantities and conversions; the development of quantum theory; gases and the gas laws; intermolecular forces; an introduction to the kinetic theory of gases; an introduction to molecular orbital diagrams; an introduction to rotational and vibrational, spectroscopies; an introduction to thermodynamics (internal energy, enthalpy, entropy and free energy, and their temperature dependence); thermodynamics and equilibria; an introduction to electrochemistry; an introduction to reaction kinetics. You will attend one lecture per week in this module.
Fundamental Organic Chemistry
In this module you will study the basics of organic chemistry, including nomenclature, molecular structure and bonding, stereochemistry and the chemical reactivity of common functional groups and reaction types through an understanding of their electronic properties. You will attend one lecture per week in this module.
Fundamental Inorganic Chemistry
In this module you'll focus on the electronic structures of atoms and molecules, and the theories underpinning the chemistry of the transition metal elements. You will attend one lecture per week in this module.
Introductory Laboratory Work
This module introduces you to the essential laboratory skills that are required in inorganic, organic and physical chemistry. You’ll spend around four hours per week in laboratory practicals performing experiments, and collecting and analysing data. You’ll present written reports of your experimental work that will form part of the assessment for this module.
From Newton to Einstein
This module will introduce you to topics which will underpin all subsequent physics modules such as: classical mechanics; vectors; Einstein's special theory of relativity; electromagnetism; electrical circuits and quantum physics. You’ll spend around five hours per week in lectures and tutorials studying this module.
Computing For Physical Science
You’ll receive training in basic computing techniques using MatLab, and will be introduced to their use in solving physical problems. You’ll spend three to four hours in computer classes and a one hour lecture each week.
Mathematics for Physics and Astronomy
You’ll study a selection of mathematical techniques that are used for analysing physical behaviour. Topics will include: complex numbers; calculus of a single variable; plane geometry; differential equations; calculus of several variables; and matrix algebra. You’ll spend around three hours per week in workshops and lectures studying this module.
Core Laboratory Work
This module builds on the practical, analytical and communication skills developed in the first year and introduces experiments across the range of chemistry, based on your second year theory modules. You’ll spend around six hours per week in practicals for this module.
Intermediate Inorganic Chemistry
You’ll explore the organometallic chemistry of the transition metals and will discuss the use of multinuclear NMR spectroscopy as a tool for the characterisation of molecules.
Intermediate Physical Chemistry
You’ll build upon the principles of thermodynamics and kinetics developed in year one. You’ll discuss the behaviour at liquid/gas and solid/gas interfaces and will be introduced to electrochemical cells and voltammetry.
Spectroscopy and Quantum Chemistry
You’ll study quantum mechanics and show how it can be applied to confined particles, the rotation and vibration of molecules, the hydrogen atom, and one-electron ions. You’ll be introduced to the principles of spectroscopy to predict and understand atomic and diatomic molecular spectra, and understand how electronic and molecular structure determines the appearance of spectra.
The Quantum World
You’ll be given an introduction to the theoretical and elementary applications of quantum mechanics. Beginning with a discussion of the motion of particles and the quantum theory of angular momentum, you’ll then study the importance of symmetry, quantum statistics and matrix mechanics. You’ll have four hours of lectures and workshops each week for this module.
Building on the year one module From Newton to Einstein, you’ll be introduced to the mathematics of vector calculus and will cover various aspects of electromagnetism including the treatment of magnetic media, electromagnetic waves and various techniques for the solution of electromagnetic problems. You’ll spend around four hours per week in lectures and workshops for this module.
Experimental Techniques and Instrumentation
You’ll be introduced to a variety of topics including: basic techniques and equipment used in experimental physics; training in the analysis and interpretation of data; and training in the skills of record keeping and writing scientific reports. You’ll have around eight hours of practicals and lectures each week to study this module.
You’ll study topics such as the physical properties of the atmosphere, chemistry of ozone in the stratosphere, global warming, and analytical methods in atmospheric chemistry in three hours of lectures each week.
Principles of Analytical Chemistry
You’ll be introduced to the principles of analytical chemistry, including the principal types of instrumentation used and the statistical treatment of analytical results. You’ll spend around two hours per week in lectures and workshops studying this module.
Force and Function at the Nanoscale
You’ll be given an overview of how forces at the nanoscale are different to those observed in macroscopic systems and will consider how they can be exploited in nanometre-scale processes and devices. You’ll focus on the physical basis and measurement of forces operating on the nanoscale, considering van der Waals, electrostatic, hydrophobic and hydrophilic interactions. You’ll spend around three hours per week in lectures and workshops studying this module.
Chemical Bonding and Reactivity
You’ll learn about the fundamental requirements for two molecules to react and how to assess the likelihood of reactivity based on energy level structure. You’ll learn about experiments that can probe the outcomes of reaction and experiments that can promote reaction. You’ll learn about some theoretical methods that can be used to understand reactivity. The module will progress at two lectures per week, with four workshops interspersed throughout the semester and regular problem sheets.
Solids, Interfaces and Surfaces
You’ll study the relationships between structure and properties of solids, and develop electronic structure theories that account for a wide range of properties of solids. You’ll learn about semi-conductors, photoconductivity, LEDs and solar cells and attend around two lectures per week in this module.
You’ll be introduced to general methods for the discussion of wave propagation, specifically methods for the solution of differential equations and Fourier methods. You’ll spend around six hours each week in lectures and workshops for this module.
Atoms, Photons and Fundamental Particles
This module will introduce you to the physics of atoms, nuclei and the fundamental components of matter. You’ll cover topics such as: particle physics; atomic physics; lasers; and nuclear physics. You’ll spend around four hours a week in lectures and workshops for this module.
Introduction to Solid State Physics
Providing a general introduction to solid state physics, you’ll cover topics such as: bonding; crystal structures; band theory; phonons; and optical properties of solids and magnetism. You’ll spend around four hours per week in lectures and workshops studying for this module.
You’ll carry out a project within the areas of chemical and molecular physics, which may be experimental or theoretical in nature. Spending around two hours per week in lectures and tutorials, you’ll work in pairs to plan your project under the guidance of a project supervisor.
Advanced Laboratory Techniques
You’ll gain experience of advanced experimental techniques, spending around 12 hours per week in practicals. You’ll study the principles upon which modern experimental methodology is based, obtain and interpret physical data, and undertake project work and report writing.
Chemistry and Molecular Physics Literature and Communication Skills
You’ll undertake a literature review on a selected topic in the area of chemistry and molecular physics, presenting your work as a written report. You’ll also develop your communication skills through group work, presentations and writing for the general public. You’ll spend around two hours per week in workshops for this module.
Lasers in Chemistry
You'll explore the applciations of lasers in chemistry including their use in atmospheric measurements; combustion; photochemistry and synthesis; chemical kinetics; studies of small metal clusters and nanoparticles and time-resolved studies.
Bioinorganic and Metal Coordination Chemistry
You’ll study the roles of the transition metal elements in biology including iron in haemoglobin and myoglobin, metal centres in enzymes and the use of metal complexes in medicine. You'll learn about the physical methods used to study the electronic structure of transition metal centres and the synthesis and the application of coordination chemistry in metal extraction, photochemistry and catalysis. You’ll attend two lectures per week in this module.
This module will develop your knowledge and understanding of heterogeneous and homogeneous catalysis, catalyst promotion and the concept of catalytic cycles. You’ll spend around two hours per week in lectures and seminars for this module.
Topics in Inorganic Chemistry
You’ll study aspects of solid state materials chemistry and f-Block chemistry including their synthesis, technological uses and applications, electronic structure, spectroscopy and optical properties, magnetism and roles in catalysis.
(You will choose one of the following modules).
Chemistry Research Project
You will be welcomed into one of the research groups within the School of Chemistry to undertake an in-depth research project. All projects will involve a review of relevant published work and the planning and execution of a research topic under the guidance of two supervisors.
Natural Science and CMP Physics Project
The module will consist of a project the aim of which is to solve a practical or theoretical problem. Practical problems will be undertaken in research laboratories and typically students work in groups on their project.
From Accelerators to Medical Imaging
This module examines experimental high energy physics techniques such as synchrotrons and cyclotrons and their applications in medical imaging. Through two hours of lectures each week, you’ll cover topics including: cyclotrons, synchrotrons; applications to radiation detectors; X-ray imaging; and nuclear medicine.
Functional Medical Imaging
Through two hours of lectures per week you’ll cover topics such as: NMR; introduction to MRI; physics of nerves; EEG and MEG.
Imaging and Manipulation at the Nanoscale
You’ll consider the use of scanning probes to acquire images of surfaces with sub-atomic resolution and to investigate the phenomena which occur on the nanometre length-scale. Spending around two hours per week in lectures, you’ll examine how scanning probe microscopy has provided an enormous stimulus to nanoscience and how new research and applications are developing in this emerging discipline.
This module will explore the physics of semiconductors and some of their applications. Topics include: semiconductor materials; energy bands and band bending; quantum confinement and the density of states; electrical properties; and semiconductor devices. You’ll have around two hours of lectures each week to study for this module.
You’ll extend and develop your knowledge of quantum theory with a particular emphasis on how quantum systems evolve over time. The module will focus on developing the mathematical formalism of quantum mechanics as well as introducing important physical models and calculational techniques.
Advanced Physical Chemistry
Building on your knowledge from the previous years' modules in physical chemistry, you’ll study topics including: intermolecular forces, computer modelling and simulations of condensed phases and chemical sensors. You’ll spend around two hours in lectures and seminars each week for this module.
Contemporary Physical Chemistry
You’ll learn about the properties of matter from condensed matter through to gas phase including the novel states of matter such as ultracold molecules in traps and liquid He nanodroplets, microsolvated clusters, and low dimensional carbon structures. You’ll study the dynamics of chemical processes and the capability of modern light sources allowing for the study of time-resolved measurements on timescales ranging from pico- to attoseconds. You’ll study this module through two hours of lectures per week.
Inorganic and Materials Chemistry
In this module you will explore inorganic photochemistry, electron transport pathways, molecular and supramolecular photochemistry, and artificial photosynthesis together with the principles that underpin green chemistry. You will spend around two hours each week in lectures and seminars.
Self-assembly and Bottom-up Approaches to Nanostructure Fabrication
In this module you’ll study the approaches to the fabrication of molecular assemblies on the nanoscale. You’ll gain an understanding of the nature of intermolecular forces, paying particular attention to their application to self-assembly. You’ll spend around two hours per week studying this module.
The Politics, Perception and Philosophy of Physics
In this module you'll gain an appreciation of the broad societal impact of physics (and science in general). You'll be introduced to the politics surrounding science policy (on, e.g., global warming/renewable energy R&D) and research funding. You'll also explorre some of the key ideas in the philosophy of physics and science, particularly as they relate to public perception of scientific research.
The modules we offer are inspired by the research interests of our staff and as a result may change for reasons of, for example, research developments or legislation changes. The above list is a sample of typical modules we offer, not a definitive list.