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Analytical Methods in Materials Science (TFFM40)

Materialtekniska analysmetoder (TFFM40)

Welcome to the course Analytical Methods in Materials Science.

The objective with the course is to give an in-depth knowledge of the theory and practical use of physical measurements and advanced analytical instruments used for materials analysis today. The emphasis is directed towards techniques that are used both in industrial and university research and at development laboratories. By combining the information from these techniques a very good picture of the sample being analyzed is obtained.

In Swedish industry, it is primarily the fields within the steel, hard metal, and the automotive industries (but also many others) that engage in materials-related research by the analytical methods taught in the course. Examples of companies are Sandvik, Seco, Volvo, SKF, SSAB, Ericsson, Sapa, Siemens, ABB, and others. As a PhD student in materials science the analytical techniques covered in the course are used on a daily basis. The course is also a natural source for recruitment of new PhD students.

If you in the future will be working with materials and/or materials analysis, either as a researcher at a university or technician/developer in the industry, this course will be very useful. Swedish industry is of course dependent on staff with an education in material science/material analysis of high international standard.

As an applicant for jobs oriented towards materials analysis, this may very well be the course that makes the employer to choose you!


After the course the student should:

  • understand the physical principles of analysis methods used in today’s materials science and engineering.
  • understand the basic physical mechanisms when solid materials interact with electromagnetic radiation, electrons and ions.
  • understand the fundamental aspects of diffraction and contrast theory.
  • have obtained hands-on experience and have practical skills in operating the instruments and appreciate their potential (but also limitations).
  • understand how the different analysis techniques complement each other when performing basic materials research.
  • be able to make conclusions regarding the different techniques applicability for basic materials research.
  • have practiced report writing, in groups of two, by together summarizing the results that have been obtained for the different analysis techniques.


The course is composed of both lectures and laborations. First the theory behind the analysis techniques is treated in lectures, and thereafter the students are divided in lab groups to see and learn how the instruments are operated in practical laborations.


Advanced level



Solid State Physics or similar is a requirement.

Experimental Physics is recommended.

The course language is English.

Target students

This course is intended for students participating in the MED, MFYS, MSN, and Y-programmes. The course is also open for PhD students at IFM, ITN, and IEI.

Course credits

6 hp (6 ECTS)

Responsible for this page: Fredrik Eriksson
Last updated: 01/16/20