PHY8008 : Laboratory Skills

Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


The aim of the module is to acquaint students with some key principles underlying good practice in physics research in laboratory settings, including how to work safely in a “fabrication lab” environment and how to complete risk assessments. The students will also learn how to prepare advanced semiconductor devices and how to characterise them.

Outline Of Syllabus

- Clean room induction.
- Health and Safety training on laboratory work.
- Introduction to risk assessment of both equipment and chemicals.
- Training on general equipment components and their working principles.
- Training on advanced device fabrication.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion501:0050:00Preparation and completion of scientific report based on samples fabricated
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion81:008:00Preparation of health and safety assessment including COSH forms
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical102:0020:00Sample fabrication and characterisation under supervision.
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading101:0010:00Follow-up on instrument working principles
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching23:006:00Health and safety training
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study61:006:00Preparation for H&S oral examination
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Small group teaching provide the means of delivering to students the core information required to acquire the intended knowledge outcomes. Our cleanroom technician will show the students the safety features of the cleanroom and will teach an introduction to chemical safety. The technician will also teach the students the working principles behind the most common instruments in the clean room and how to operate them safely.

In the practical sessions, our cleanroom technician will go through the whole fabrication procedure with the students of an advanced semiconductor device relevant to their projects which can include wafer cleaning, doping, photolithography, electrode deposition, etching, etc. steps. The students will then characterise the fabricated device and analyse its electrical behaviour which will cement their knowledge of working principles of semiconductor devices.

Assessment Methods

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

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Oral Examination301M50Oral examination on the health and safety aspects of the project.
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Report1M50A maximum of 2 pages (including appendices and references) and include 1-2 figures– equivalent to 1000-1500 words
Zero Weighted Pass/Fail Assessments
Description When Set Comment
Written exerciseMHealth and safety risk assessment form preparation, including COSHH forms.
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The risk assessment will test the student’s ability to critically evaluate the risks of working in a laboratory setting. The oral examination with their project supervisor will ensure that the students are aware of the risks related to completing their project, know the standard operating protocol of all instruments used and test their knowledge on health and safety protocols. By preparing a scientific report based on the device fabricated during the practical session, we will assess the student’s understanding of advanced semiconductor devices.

Reading Lists