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PHY1023 : Introductory Electromagnetism and Materials

  • Offered for Year: 2019/20
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Jon Goss
  • Lecturer: Dr Tiago Marinheiro
  • Owning School: Mathematics, Statistics and Physics
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


To give an understanding of electromagnetic fields, the resultant forces, the origins of electricity and magnetism, and the theorems required to evaluate field properties symbolically and quantitatively.
To present the various forms semiconductor materials, their behaviour under in an electric field, and their use in devices;
To introduce concepts of states of matter with a focus on solid state materials to act as a foundation for later course;

Outline Of Syllabus

Origin of charge and forces between charges:- electric field, potential energy, capacitance, dielectrics, electric flux, dispersion and circulation;
Coulomb’s a and Gauss’ laws;
Magnetic Fields
The concept of a magnetic field, dispersion and circulation, circuit laws, flow concepts, flux, inductance, flux density, mmf, mmf gradient.
Ampere’s, Biot-Savart, Faraday’s and Gauss’ laws for magnetism.
Magnetic materials including ferromagnetism and hysteresis
forces of attraction and alignment; force on current carrying conductors.
Metals, semiconductors, and devices:
Charge within a solid(multiatom):- energy bands and their occupation, forbidden energy gap, difference between metals, semiconductors and insulators
Changing the distribution of charge in the energy bands:- effect of temperature, electrons and holes, doping as a means of increasing the electrons and holes in a semiconductor
Current flow due to an electric field in metals and semiconductors:- electric field currents, resistivity, conductivity
Current flow due to diffusion in non-uniform doped semiconductors:- diffusion currents, built-in electric field
PN junctions:- barrier height, depletion layer and current flow under zero bias, forward bias and reverse bias; explanation of the diode equation, diode capacitance
Light emitting diodes and photodiodes
States of matter:
Bonds between atoms: ionic bonds, metallic bonds, covalent bonds, molecular bonds, comparative strength of the bonds.
Ideal Gases: kinetic theory, specific heat of gases, mean free path.
Gas-liquid phase transitions: modifications to the ideal gas equation, continuous and discontinuous transitions between liquids and gases.
Liquids: the role of intermolecular forces in understanding surface tension and viscosity.
Order-disorder transitions: amorphous solids, liquid crystals.
Solids: the unit cell, crystal planes, methods of determining crystal structures.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion240:3012:00Revision for mid semester test
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion11:001:00Mid semester test
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion480:3024:00Revision for final exam
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion13:003:00Final exam
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture121:0012:00In-class tutorials
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture481:0048:00Formal lectures
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery120:102:00Office hours
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study198:0098:00Reviewing lecture notes inc. ReCap; Background reading; Tutorial sheet and past paper questions.
Jointly Taught With
Code Title
EEE1001Fields, Materials and Devices
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures provide core material and guidance for further reading, problem solving practice is provided through tutorials and continually assessed exercises. In addition office hours (two per week) will provide an opportunity for more direct contact between individual students and the lecturer: a typical student might spend a total of one or two hours over the course of the module, either individually or as part of a group.

Assessment Methods

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

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination1802A90N/A
Written Examination602M10Mid semester test
Exam Pairings
Module Code Module Title Semester Comment
EEE1001Fields, Materials and Devices2The exams share 75% of the content only.
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The examination provides the opportunity for the student to demonstrate their understanding of the course material. The problem solving aspects of the assessment enable students to demonstrate that they are able to apply this understanding and their analysis and synthesis skills to novel situations.

Reading Lists