PROPERTIES OF MATTER - 2023/4

Module code: PHY1039

Module Overview

This module will introduce the classical physics that is relevant to gases and condensed matter, making use of the thermodynamic equations of state. The emphasis will be on the structure of matter and its relationship to mechanical and thermal properties, such as elasticity and thermal expansivity. Laws of classical thermodynamics will be introduced. The module will prepare the student for the study of solid state physics and advanced thermodynamics at Level FHEQ 5.

Module provider

Mathematics & Physics

MORRISON Lisa (Maths & Phys)

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Independent Learning Hours: 40

Lecture Hours: 22

Tutorial Hours: 11

Laboratory Hours: 22

Guided Learning: 44

Captured Content: 11

Semester 2

None.

Module content

Indicative content includes:

• Lectures

• States of matter; Open and closed thermodynamic systems; equilibrium states; state variables; types of walls; Zeroth Law of Thermodynamics; definition of temperature;

• Reversible processes; equations of state; ideal and van der Waals gases; phase transitions (solid, liquid and gas); inter-atomic and intermolecular potentials; relation between intermolecular interactions and phase transitions

• Bulk properties:  thermal expansivity, elasticity (bulk modulus, surface tension, and elastic modulus).

• Types of work; calculations of work; adiabatic free expansions.

• Definition of heat; First Law of Thermodynamics; molecular viewpoint of heat and work; enthalpy; thermodynamic method in problem solving

• Degrees of freedom in monoatomic, diatomic and triatomic molecules; Heat capacity (Cp and Cv) for gases; introduction to crystal structure; heat capacity of solids (Dulong-Petit and Debye limits);

• Adiabatic expansions of gas; Cp – Cv and Cp/Cv; heat engines; Carnot cycle; efficiency of an engine; Kelvin and Clausius’ statements of the Second Law of Thermodynamics; Carnot’s theorem

• Topics of experiments will include: latent heat of liquid nitrogen; thermal expansion of metals; X-ray diffraction of crystals; and adiabatic work on ideal gases.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Online Scheduled Summative Class Test ONLINE (OPEN BOOK) BI-WEEKLY TESTS WITHIN 4HR WINDOW 10
Practical based assessment LABORATORY COURSEWORK 30
Examination END OF SEMESTER EXAMINATION - 2 HOURS 60

Alternative Assessment

Assessed Laboratory Diary Mark and Report/Poster UoA may be assessed by two laboratory experiments, two diaries and two written reports.

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate

their practical laboratory skills, their abilities to analyse data and draw conclusions from it, their skills in communicating scientific information, their problem-solving abilities, and their understanding of fundamental concepts and theory relating to all forms of matter

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

• Two-hour invigilated examination at the end of the semester (weighted at 60%), with section A consisting of compulsory questions (20 marks) and section B with two questions (20 marks each) chosen from three. If all  three questions in Part B are attempted only the best two will be counted.

• Bi-weekly test questions submitted on-line (weighted at 10%)

• Laboratory coursework (weighted at 30%) consisting of:

-  Laboratory diaries (every 2 weeks)

- Laboratory report or Poster presentation

The Laboratory unit of assessment has a qualifying mark of 40%.

Formative assessment and feedback

During the laboratory sessions, students will be given verbal feedback on their performance and written feedback on their diary-keeping from laboratory instructors.  At the poster session, students will be given verbal feedback on their poster by their peers and laboratory instructors.  At weekly tutorial classes, students will complete problem sets whose model solutions will then be uploaded on Surrey Learn.

Module aims

• introduce the basic principles of classical equilibrium thermodynamics.
• explain and apply the Laws of Thermodynamics in problem solving.
• introduce the concepts of internal energy and heat and to understand their relevance in the world.
• develop skills in using mathematics to describe thermodynamic processes.
• relate the atomic and molecular structure of matter to properties of matter, including expansivity and elasticity.
• use the laboratory to reinforce concepts from lectures.  The aims of the laboratory are to build on the foundation of previous practical classes when conducting experiments to verify theory and to improve understanding.  Another aim is to develop skills in analysing data.  The importance of keeping a laboratory notebook (diary) and the clear presentation of results will be stressed.

Learning outcomes

 Attributes Developed 1 Demonstrate understanding how intermolecular forces relate to the states of matter and determine the structure of matter. KC 2 Show an appreciation of how molecular interactions influence bulk properties, including thermal expansivity and elasticity. K 3 Display competence in classical thermodynamics and appreciate its fundamental importance in the physical world. K 4 Show an understanding of the Laws of Thermodynamics and will gain an ability to apply them in the analysis of simple thermodynamic systems. KC 5 Know the definitions of thermodynamic terms and will be able to solve algebraic and numerical problems in thermodynamics. KC 6 Via successful completion of the laboratory classes, perform an experiment of intermediate difficulty, developing practical, analytical and computational skills, by following written instructions. P 7 Obtain data with good accuracy, to evaluate the precision of the results, and to draw conclusions from the data through numerical analysis CPT 8 Keep a comprehensive diary of activity, recording results in a form useful to others, and to complete a report, based on the diary, in the style of a scientific paper. The specific practical skills gained will vary according to the assignment of experiments P

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

• equip students with subject knowledge

• develop skills in applying subject knowledge to physical situations

• enable students to tackle unseen problems in thermodynamics

• develop students' practical skills

• develop students' report-writing skills

The learning and teaching methods include:

• 22h of lecures as 2h/week for 11 weeks

• 11h of tutorials as 1h/week over 11 weeks

• 20h of practical laboratory work

• Total student workload is 150hrs, with the remaining hours consisting of independent study

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: PHY1039

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Mathematics and Physics BSc (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Physics with Nuclear Astrophysics MPhys 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Physics with Astronomy MPhys 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Physics with Quantum Technologies MPhys 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Physics MPhys 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Physics BSc (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Physics with Astronomy BSc (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Physics with Quantum Technologies BSc (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Physics with Nuclear Astrophysics BSc (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Mathematics and Physics MPhys 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Mathematics and Physics MMath 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2023/4 academic year.