CHY8428 : Applications of Physical Chemistry in Energy, Environmental, and Biological Research

Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


To introduce modern advances in applied physical chemistry by reference to four selected topics.
To describe the basic principles and practical aspects involved in each topic through lectures and workshops.
To develop deeper understanding of the topics and their relation to contemporary research issues through guided study.
To link the topics to interdisciplinary research in fields of strategic global importance; e.g. energy, climate change, molecular medicine.

Outline Of Syllabus

Supramolecular Photochemistry - Dr Fabio Cucinotta

Lessons from nature: photosynthesis.
Design of artificial photosystems.
Assembling hybrid structures.
Photophysical measurements and techniques.
Supramolecular opto-electronics.
Review of course and preparation for assignment.

Solar Cells - Dr Libby Gibson

Light absorption
Solar cell devices
Dye sensitized solar cells
Improving the efficiency
The third generation: tandem cells and quantum dots
Review of course and preparation for assignment.

Electrochemistry - Dr Ben Horrocks

Electrochemical cells,
instrumentation and interfaces;
mass transfer and electrode kinetics;
steady state voltammetry;
transient methods;
electrochemical mechanisms and Probe microscopy
Review of course and preparation for assignment.

Biophysical Chemistry - Dr Eimer Tuite

Introduction to biopolymers and molecular recognition
Thermodynamics and kinetics
Optical spectroscopy
Polarized spectroscopy
Hydrodynamic techniques
Review of course and preparation for assignment.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture241:0024:00presentation of topics
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion121:0021:00researching the topics and preparation for the assignment and presentation
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion140:0040:00background reading
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion115:0015:00in-course assignment
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Students acquire knowledge and understanding of the specific topics through attendance at lectures and additional reading on the topics.
Students will gain deeper insight into the topics through researching the literature for in-course assessment.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Oral Presentation151A50N/A
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Prob solv exercises1M50~4 problem solving exercises
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Each student will give a presentation on an individually-assigned research topic based on a contemporary paper related to one of the lecture courses. Students will summarise and critically assess the research approach and results of their paper. Students will gain a deep understanding of the topic and will be assessed on their ability to assimilate and transfer knowledge through presentation.

Students will complete problem solving exercises on the material that has been presented in each of the lecture courses.

Reading Lists