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PH40085: Nanoscience

Follow this link for further information on academic years Academic Year: 2014/5
Further information on owning departmentsOwning Department/School: Department of Physics
Further information on credits Credits: 6
Further information on unit levels Level: Masters UG & PG (FHEQ level 7)
Further information on teaching periods Period: Semester 2
Further information on unit assessment Assessment Summary: EX 100%
Further information on unit assessment Assessment Detail:
  • Examination (EX 100%)
Further information on supplementary assessment Supplementary Assessment: Like-for-like reassessment (where allowed by programme regulations)
Further information on requisites Requisites: Before taking this unit you must take PH30030
Further information on descriptions Description: Aims:
The aims of this unit are to outline properties of materials at the nanoscale, to describe methods for the fabrication, visualisation and probing of nanostructures, and to give some examples of their possible applications.

Learning Outcomes:
After taking this unit the student should be able to:
* demonstrate a thorough understanding of the impact of the nanoscale on the electronic structure, charge-transport and magnetic properties of materials;
* explain the physical properties of one- and zero-dimensional systems;
* explain representative properties of topical nanoscale nanomaterials, such as graphene and carbon nanotubes;
* describe different methods of nanoscale fabrication and characterisation;
* articulate public concerns and the benefits of nanoscience and nanotechnology.

Numeracy T/F A, Problem Solving T/F A.

Nanotechnology - what is it? (1 hour): Advantages, prospective applications and potential impact. Impact of the nanoscale on physical properties (1 hour): Scaling laws. Atomic clusters. Magnetic properties of nanoparticles.
Quasi-1D systems (4 hours): Electronic structure of 2D, quasi-1D and 1D systems. Subbands and transverse modes. Electrical transport in quasi-1D conductors. Conductance quantisation. B├╝ttiker-Landauer formalism.
0D systems (3 hours): Electronic structure of 0-D systems. Electrical transport in 0-D. Coulomb blockade. Single-electron transistor.
Molecular systems (3 hours): Molecular orbitals. Mechanisms of charge transport for weak and strong coupling.
Probing and manipulation at the nanoscale - The Lab on a Tip (6 hours):
1. Scanning Tunneling Microscopy (STM) and associated Quantum Phenomena: STM imaging, spectroscopy, manipulation of atoms and molecules; electronic structure with atomic resolution. Electron confinement: Quantum Corrals. How to construct an STM.
2. Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM): Magnitude of forces at the nanoscale & how to measure them. AFM application in material/life sciences. (e.g. chemical, electrical, magnetic properties, self-assembly).
Novel Carbon-based Nanomaterials (4 hours):
1.Graphene: Bonding and Electronic structure (Dirac cones and linear dispersion). Stacking layers (monolayer, bilayer, graphite). Confinement effects (nanoribbons). Klein tunnelling. Applications.
2. Carbon Nanotubes: Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes: Semiconducting/Metallic. 1D Quantization. Band structure. Applications.
Further information on programme availabilityProgramme availability:

PH40085 is Optional on the following programmes:

Programmes in Natural Sciences
  • UXXX-AFM01 : MSci(Hons) Natural Sciences (Year 4)
  • UXXX-AKM02 : MSci(Hons) Natural Sciences with Professional Placement (Year 5)
  • UXXX-AAM02 : MSci(Hons) Natural Sciences with Study year abroad (Year 5)
Department of Mathematical Sciences Department of Physics
  • USXX-AFB03 : BSc(Hons) Mathematics and Physics (Year 3)
  • USXX-AAB04 : BSc(Hons) Mathematics and Physics with Study year abroad (Year 4)
  • USXX-AKB04 : BSc(Hons) Mathematics and Physics with Year long work placement (Year 4)
  • USXX-AFM01 : MSci(Hons) Mathematics and Physics (Year 4)
  • USPH-AFB01 : BSc(Hons) Physics (Year 3)
  • USPH-AAB02 : BSc(Hons) Physics with Study year abroad (Year 4)
  • USPH-AKB02 : BSc(Hons) Physics with Year long work placement (Year 4)

PH40085 is Compulsory on the following programmes:

Department of Physics
* This unit catalogue is applicable for the 2014/15 academic year only. Students continuing their studies into 2015/16 and beyond should not assume that this unit will be available in future years in the format displayed here for 2014/15.
* Programmes and units are subject to change at any time, in accordance with normal University procedures.
* Availability of units will be subject to constraints such as staff availability, minimum and maximum group sizes, and timetabling factors as well as a student's ability to meet any pre-requisite rules.