School of Engineering and Management

Advanced Materials

This course is part of the programme:
Master in Engineering and Management (Second Level)

Objectives and competences

The primary goal of this course is to teach students the basic principles of material science and inform them about the recent trend in developments on this area.

Competences: The students are introduced to the parameters that describe functional properties of materials. The mechanisms that are responsible for crystallographic defects will be discussed. Overview of the main characteristics of technologically relevant materials will include metals, semiconductors, polymers and nanostructured materials.


Required prerequisit knowledge from courses: Technical Physics and Idustrial Chemistry at the first level studies.

Content (Syllabus outline)

1. Crystal structure

  • Structure of Atom
  • Crystal Lattices
  • Analysis of Crystal Structure

2. Material Synthesis

  • Diffusion
  • Phase equilibrium
  • Solid-State Synthesis
  • Precipitation
  • Hydrothermal Synthesis
  • Single Crystals

3. Crystal Defects

  • Point defects
  • Extended defects

4. Types of Materials

  • Metals
  • Polymer
  • Silikates
  • Carbon structures
  • Ceramics
  • Glasses
  • Composites

1. Functional properties

  • Mechanical properties
  • Thermal properties
  • Electrical properties
  • Magnetic properties
  • Optical properties

Intended learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding:

The student will get informed with the basic principles of electronic structure of atoms, chemical bonds and crystallography. This will be followed by lectures on diffusion processes and phase equilibrium. The main part of the course represents the studies of materials properties. In this part the students will hear about thermal, mechanical, electrical, magnetic and optic properties of materials.

At the end of the course it is expected from the student to have a general overview on composition and functional properties of the materials from all four groups: metals, polymers, inorganic nonmetal systems and composites.


Callister’s Materials Science and Engineering, (adapted by R. Balasubramanian), John Wiley and Sons, Inc., New York (2014).


Assessment of the seminar, oral exam 40/60

Lecturer's references

Prof. dr. Matjaž Valant, full professor in the field of materials on the University of Nova Gorica


- University degree on chemistry, 21/3/1991, Faculty for Chemistry and Chemical Technologies, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia

- Doctorate, 30/11/1995 Jozef Stefan Institute, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia;

- Postdoctorate study, 01/10/1997 – 31/9/1998, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, USA

- Assistant professorship, 01/11/2002, for the field of inorganic and general chemistry, University of Maribor, Slovenia

- Professor Associate 28/11/2007, for field of Materials, University of Nova Gorica, Slovenia

- Full professor 18/1/2013, for field of Materials, University of Nova Gorica, Slovenia

Publications (source: Google Scholar):

- Number of all publications: 190

- Citation count: >6800

- H-index: 45

- invited talks: 63 (6 plenary talks)

- number of patents: 11

1.BENČINA, Metka, VALANT, Matjaž, PITCHER, Michael W., FANETTI, Mattia. Intensive visible-light photoactivity of Bi- and Fe-containing pyrochlore nanoparticles. Nanoscale, ISSN 2040-3364, 2014, vol. 6, iss. 2, str. 745-748, doi: 10.1039/C3NR04260J. [COBISS.SI-ID 3046395]

2. VALANT, Matjaž, ARČON, Iztok, MIKULSKA, Iuliia, LISJAK, Darja. Cation order-disorder transition in Fe-doped 6H-BaTiO[sub]3 for dilute room-temperature ferromagnetism. Chemistry of materials, ISSN 0897-4756. [Print ed.], 2013, vol. 25, no. 17, str. 3544-3550, doi: 10.1021/cm402353t. [COBISS.SI-ID 26970151]

3.F. Le Goupil, A.-K. Axelsson, L.J. Dunne, M. Valant, G. Manos, T. Lukasiewicz, J. Dec, A. Berenov, N. McN. Alford Anisotropy of the Electrocaloric Effect in Lead-Free Relaxor Ferroelectrics /Adv. Energy Mater.,/1301688 (2014)

4. VALANT, Matjaž. Electrocaloric materials for future solid-state refrigeration technologies. Progress in Materials Science, ISSN 0079-6425. [Print ed.], 2012, vol. 57, no. 6, str. 980-1009. [COBISS.SI-ID 2210043]

5.VALANT, Matjaž, KOLODIAZHNYI, Taras, ARČON, Iztok, AGUESSE, Frederic, AXELSSON, Anna-Karin, ALFORD, Neil McN. The origin of magnetism in Mn-doped SrTiO [sub] 3. Advanced functional materials, ISSN 1616-301X, maj 2012, vol. 22, no. 10, str. 2114-2122. [COBISS.SI-ID 2265083]

University course code: 2GI016

Year of study: 1

Course principal:





  • Lectures: 22 hours
  • Seminar: 8 hours
  • Individual work: 120 hours

Course type: elective

Languages: slovene

Learning and teaching methods:
• lectures • tutorials from basic principles of crystallography on computer simulations • seminars from recent topics in materials science