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NES3408 : Advanced Structural Chemistry

  • Offered for Year: 2024/25
  • Module Leader(s):
  • Owning School: Natural and Environmental Sciences
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus

Your programme is made up of credits, the total differs on programme to programme.

Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0
European Credit Transfer System


To enhance understanding of various analytical techniques and introduce additional modern, advanced, experimental probes. To build on knowledge gained in materials analysis from stage 1 and 2. To provide students with detailed knowledge of the theory and practice of modern chemical analysis, in particular in the areas of powder and single crystal X-ray diffraction and advanced Mass Spectrometry and to introduce new techniques such as magnetic probes and X-ray spectroscopic methods.

Outline Of Syllabus

Introduction to X-ray spectroscopic methods
The course will introduce the basic theory and use of the X-ray absorption (XAS) and emission (XES) spectroscopic techniques to investigate electronic states within materials.

Introduction to advanced magnetism studies
Basics of electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) and electron spin resonance (ESR) will be delivered, along with exposure to SQUID magnetometry.

X-ray diffraction methods
Diffraction theory will be introduced and the application to crystalline materials. Material will introduce the implicit relationships between Fourier Transformations and diffraction patterns. Single crystal diffraction techniques will be explained in detail with various structure solution mechanisms explored. Differences between diffraction and spectroscopic methods will be highlighted. And the differences in use of powder and single crystal techniques

Mass Spectrometry
Fundamentals of the technique’s theory will be introduced along with the standard EI instrumentation. Details of how structure fragmentation patterns may be interpreted from the various applications. Soft ionisation methods will be introduced: CI, FAB, MALDI-TOF, MS-MS and the application of MS to a wide variety of chemical entities.

Optical spectroscopy
Revision of earlier theory in IR and UV spectroscopies and an introduction to Raman spectroscopy

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion12:002:00Formative assessment completion.
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion11:301:30End of semester examination
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion200:3010:00Revision for end of semester examination
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture201:0020:00Lecture
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops72:0014:00Workshops
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study152:3052:30Self study – reinforcing theory and practice through text books and solving problems
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The important principles of structural chemistry will be covered in the lectures. This will be supported in workshops that will allow students to tackle an array of different problems associated with the lecture material and help prepare for the assessment.

Assessment Methods

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

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination901A100N/A
Formative Assessments

Formative Assessment is an assessment which develops your skills in being assessed, allows for you to receive feedback, and prepares you for being assessed. However, it does not count to your final mark.

Description Semester When Set Comment
Prob solv exercises1MN/A
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The written examination will assess the level of knowledge and understanding of all aspects of the module. The examination will present students with questions from a selection of topics learnt throughout the module content.

Formative assessment aids students' understanding of their progress during the module.

** Students studying from abroad may request to take their exam before the semester 1 exam period, in which case the format of the paper may differ from that shown in the MOF. These students should contact the school to discuss this **

Reading Lists