Amorphous Materials for Innovative Functional Structures

Lecturer(s): Michelle SALVIA, Maria-Isabel DE BARROS BOUCHET
Course ⋅ 12 hTC ⋅ 14 hPW ⋅ 4 h


Amorphous materials are synthetic or natural materials widely used in a large number of applications. For these materials, the industrial and technological development has often preceded scientific concerns in terms of characterization, structure-property relationship and modelling of the behavior and their life cycle. Currently, the science of glasses is a field rich in developments, with numerous technological impacts in industrial sectors such as the transportation, civil engineering, medical, agri-food... This course offers a deepening of the knowledge on the specificities of these materials and on their applications. External speakers will be present and a visit to a plastic bottle recycling centre will be organised.


Glass, vitreous state, oxides, polymers, elastomers, glass transition, semi-crystallinity, rheological behavior, recycling


  • The amorphous state: origins of order and disorder...
  • Manufacturing processes.
  • Networks and crystallization phenomena.
  • Characterization methods: thermal analysis, X-ray, infrared...
  • Structure and rheological behavior.
  • Functional properties: optics, shape memory, damping, thermal insulation, electrical conduction and innovative applications in various industrial sectors.
  • Life cycle, characterization and recyclability of a packaging (example of a soda bottle).

Learning Outcomes

  • Acquire knowledge on the structure and characterisation techniques of amorphous materials in the objective to better understand their properties.
  • Define the characterisation and identification techniques to be used according to the material to be analysed.
  • Have notions concerning the recycling of amorphous materials.
  • Use acquired knowledge to analyse the issues of their life cycle and make a critical analysis.


0.5: knowledge (test: quiz + exercises); 0.3: know-how (oral presentation of the project); 0.2: methodology (practical work report).