General information

Subject type: Mandatory

Coordinator: Joan Triadó Aymerich

Trimester: Third term

Credits: 6

Teaching staff: 

Andreu Comajuncosas Fortuño

Teaching languages

  • Catalan

This subject has been successfully enrolled by a number of foreign students, most of them from Italy. Classes are taught in Catalan and students are expected to have a basic understanding of spoken Catalan. However, exams and practical reports can be written in Italian or in other languages. Public questions in the classroom and private questions to the teacher can also be asked in Italian or other languages.


Specific skills
  • CE9: Understand the basics of materials science, technology and chemistry. Understand the relationship between microstructure, synthesis or processing and the properties of materials.


Scientific foundations of the structure and properties of materials used in mechanical and electronic engineering.

It is recommended, but not essential, to have taken previous subjects in Physics and Chemistry.

The contents of this subject will be extended in later subjects.


1. Crystalline structures. Defects.


Atomic bond: ionic, covalent, metallic and secondary. Link distance. Binding energy. Coordination number.

Crystalline systems. Unit cell. Bravais Networks.

Metal structures: body-centered cubic, face-centered cubic, compact hexagonal.

Ceramic structures: cesium chloride, sodium chloride, fluorite, cristobalite, corundum, graphite, football.

Polymer structures: polyethylene.

Semiconductor structures: silicon, gallium arsenide.

Positions and directions in the crystal lattice. Miller indices. Miller-Bravais indices.

X-ray diffraction.

Alloys. Hume-Rothery rules.

Punctual defects: vacant, interstitial atom, Schottky defect, Frenkel defect.

Linear defects: edge, helical and mixed dislocation. Burgers vector.

Surface defects. Polycrystalline materials.

Volume defects. Metallic glass.

Dissemination. Activation energy. Arrhenius equation.

Thermal production of point defects. Dilation due to the appearance of vacancies.

Fick's laws. Variation of the diffusion coefficient with temperature.

Stationary diffusion. Surface and intergranular diffusion.

Related activities

Exercise resolution.

First partial test.

Laboratory practices.


2. Mechanical properties of materials.


Stress and deformation in metals. Tensile test. Elastic and plastic deformation. Elastic recovery.

Elastic limit. Young's module. Maximum tensile strength. Ductility. Tenacity. Hooke's law.

Fish coefficient. Shear.

Tension and deformation in ceramics and glass. Rupture module. Griffith crack pattern.

Stress and deformation in polymers. Effect of temperature and humidity.

Deformation at the microscopic scale. Sliding systems.

Hardness. Brinell and Rockwell stairs.

Creep. Dependence on voltage and temperature. Relaxation of tensions.

Viscosity. Supercooled liquids. Glasses. Tempered glass. Vulcanization. Elastomers.

Impact energy. Charpy's essay. Ductile and brittle fracture. Ductile-brittle transition temperature. Fracture toughness.

Fatigue. Fatigue resistance. Crack growth.

Non-destructive testing. Radiography. Ultrasound.

Related activities

Exercise resolution.

First partial test.

Laboratory practices.


3. Phase diagrams.


Gibbs phase rule.

Diagram of a component.

Binary diagram. Total solubility. Characteristic microstructures.

Eutectic diagram. Total insolubility. Partial solubility.

Eutectoid diagram. Ferrite-cementite and ferrite-graphite.

Peritectic diagram. Congruent and incongruent fusion.

Lever rule.

Microstructures in slow cooling. Cast Iron. Acer.

Related activities

Exercise resolution.

Second partial test.


4. Thermal properties.


Heat capacity. Specific heat at constant pressure and constant volume.

Thermal expansion. Linear expansion coefficient.

Thermal conductivity. Fourier's law.

Thermal shock.

Solidification phases: nucleation and growth.

Steel cooling. Martensitic transformations. Return: martempering and austempering.

Temper and hardness. Jominy essay. Hardening by precipitation and bitterness. Annealing. Recrystallization temperature.

Crystallization of vitroceramics. Sintering.

Related activities

Exercise resolution.

Second partial test.

Laboratory practice.


5. Electrical properties. Semiconductors.


Electrical conductivity. Ohm's law. Resistance and resistivity. Variation with temperature and with the composition of an alloy.

Energy bands: valence and conduction. Fermi level.



Insulators. Dielectric permittivity.

Intrinsic and extrinsic semiconductors. Electrons and holes. Doping pi n.

Semiconductor devices.

Related activities

Exercise resolution.

Second partial test.


Evaluation system

The final grade will be the weighted average of the grades of the assessable activities:

First partial test: 40%

Second partial test: 40%

Laboratory practices: 20%

Recovery exam: 80%

There will be a first partial test in the middle of the course, corresponding to topics 1 and 2, and a second partial test at the end of the course, corresponding to topics 3, 4 and 5.

For students who do not pass the assessment during the course, 20% of the internship grade will be maintained, and an overall retake exam will be held which will be worth 80% of the grade.

The resit exam may be used to pass the subject with a final grade of 5, but not to obtain a grade higher than 5.



William Callister. Introduction to Materials Science and Engineering. 1st editing Barcelona: Reverté, 2007. ISBN 9788429172539 - 9788429172546.

James Shackelford. Introduction to materials science for engineers. 6th editing Madrid: Pearson - Prentice Hall, 2008. ISBN 9788420544519.

William Smith, Javad Hashemi. Fundamentals of materials science and engineering. 4th editing Madrid: McGraw-Hill, 2006. ISBN 9701056388.


Francisco J. Gil. Materials in engineering. Problems solved. Barcelona: UPC, 2000. ISBN 9788483014110.

Jesus Cembrero Materials science and technology. Problems and questions Madrid: Pearson - Prentice Hall, 2005. ISBN 9788420542492.

Donald Askeland. Materials science and engineering. Madrid: Thomson - Paraninfo, 2001. ISBN 8497320166.

Pat Mangonon Materials science. Selection and design. Madrid: Pearson - Prentice Hall, 2002. ISBN 9789702600275.

Michael Ashby, David Jones. Materials for engineering. 1st editing Barcelona: Reverté, 2010. ISBN 9788429172553 -9788429172560.