Jennifer Weiser

Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering

ChE 211: Materials Science for Chemical Engineers

Materials Science for Chemical Engineers


 Ch 110 – General Chemistry

Text and other requirements

Required textbook: Fundamentals of Materials Science and Engineering: An Integrated Approach by Callister and Rethwisch (5th ed.) ISBN# 978-1-119-12764-2 (e-text) or 978-1-119-12764-3 (loose leaf bound).

Course overview:

This course is designed to introduce the basic principles underlying the behavior of materials.

The course provides the scientific foundation for an understanding of the relationships among material properties, microstructure, and the behavior of metals, ceramics, and polymers. Students will develop a vocabulary for the description of materials and explore how atomistic properties influence larger scale morphology and macroscopic behavior.

 This course will cover:

  • Introduction to Materials Science (Chapter 1 – all sections)
  • Atomic Structure and Interatomic Bonding (Chapter 2 – all sections)
  • Metals and Ceramics (Chapter 3 – 3.1-3.11, 3.14, 3.17-3.19)
  • Polymers (Chapter 4 – all sections)
  • Imperfections in Solids (Chapter 5 – 5.1-5.5, 5.7-5.8)
  • Diffusion (Chapter 6 – all sections EXCEPT 6.6)
  • Mechanical Properties (Chapter 7 – all sections EXCEPT 7.12)
  • Failure (Chapter 9 – all sections)
  • Phase Diagrams (Chapter 10 – 10.1-10.11)
  • Optional topics include, but are not limited to: Thermal Properties, Corrosion, Case Studies, Economics, etc. 

Course goals and objectives:

By the end of this course, you should be able to: 

  • Explain the role of materials selection in the context of chemical engineering design
  • Define key vocabulary used in describing materials science and engineering
  • Identify equipment types for many common industrial materials and their particular applications
  • Explain how each of the three main material types, metals, ceramics, and polymers are used in different applications
  • Draw unit cells for face-centered cubic, body centered cubic, and hexagonal close-packed crystal structures and calculate Miller Indices
  • Given the chemical formula for a ceramic compound and ionic radii, determine the crystal structure
  • Describe a typical polymer molecule in terms of its chain structure
  • Explain how the repeat unit influences the macromolecular properties, such as degree of crystallinity and melting temperature
  • Describe crystalline defects
  • Name and describe the two mechanisms of diffusion
  • Create stress/strain diagrams and describe how that correlates to material’s properties
  • Explain mechanical properties such as ductility, stiffness, strength, hardness
  • Compute flexural strength of materials using a three-point loading test
  • Describe the mechanism of crack propagation for ductile and brittle fracture
  • From a fatigue plot, determine fatigue lifetime and fatigue strength
  • Define creep and specify the conditions under which it occurs
  • Given a binary phase diagram, the composition of an alloy, its temperature, and assuming that the alloy is at equilibrium, determine phases present, the composition of the phase, and mass fraction of the phase