Fundamental concepts in chemical thermodynamics. Thermodynamic potentials of multi-components systems. Thermodynamics of interfaces: Gibbs model of interfaces; excess free energy of an interface; relative excess quantities; adsorption isotherm. Surface tension. Young Laplace equation. Equilibrium shape of a crystal: the Wulff theorem. Herring' s plot. Contact angle. Born-Stern approach for determining the surface energy.
G-X diagrams. The model of Bragg and Williams. Chan-Hilliard theory for the free energy of non - homogeneous systems (two components). The spinodal decomposition: critical wave length; kinetics of the spinodal decomposition.
Nucleation kinetics: classical theory of nucleation; thermodynamic and kinetic aspects; homogeneous and heterogeneous nucleation. Thin film growth. Atomistic nucleation: rate equations approach. KJMA (Kolmogorov Johnson, Mehl, Avrami) theory of phase transformation kinetics.
Crystal structures. Bravais lattice. Lattice planes and directions. Miller indices. Descriptive crystal chemistry: metals and alloys. Ionic structures. Point defects. Non-stoichiometry. Extended defects (dislocations, boundaries, stacking faults, 3-D defects).
Mechanical properties of materials. Elastic deformation. Stress-strain curves. Fatigue. Creep. Brittle and ductile fracture. Griffith theory. Weibull’s statistical theory of brittle fracture. Visco-elastic behaviour of polymers. Composite materials.
Solid surfaces fundamentals. Physisorption and Chemisorption. Adsorption isotherms (Langmuir, BET). Adsorption kinetics. Sintering of powders. Laplace’s equation. Microstructure evolution. Solid- state sintering fundamentals. Activated Sintering. Liquid-phase sintering. Pressure-assisted sintering. Vapour Deposition processes of thin films. Physical Vapour Deposition (PVD): evaporation, sputtering, magnetron sputtering, Arc-PVD, filtered arc PVD. Chemical Vapour Deposition (CVD): thermal CVD,plasma-assisted CVD (PACVD), Hot Filament CVD. Solid Oxide Fuel Cells (SOFCs) and Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cells (PEMFCs): materials and processing. Use of electrode-supported electrolyte films in SOFCs. novel ionomers for PEMFCs.
Co-teaching: Prof. Tomellini Massimo