Master in Nanoscale Engineering


ICJ élève sur ordinateur

The objectives of this master’s degree are to educate future managers, engineers and researchers in the field of nanotechnology and give them the tools to handle recent advances in nanotechnology and biology. Graduates will be ready to undertake international projects in which these different fields overlap.

École Centrale de Lyon is the leading institution of this Université de Lyon master’s programme, which is accredited jointly with INSA Lyon and Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1.

Five major supporting laboratories

Salle blanche INL

This degree is a two-year programme (Master 1 and 2) built around nanoscience and nanotechnology. It is conducted under the scientific expertise of lecturers and researchers from five major Lyon laboratories: the Lyon Institute of Nanotechnology (INL), the ILM (a nanoscience research centre), the MATEIS (materials science laboratory), the LMI (multimaterials and interfaces laboratory) and the ISA (analytical sciences institute).

An international master’s taught in English

As a truly international degree, 60% of international students to Centrale Lyon enrol in this master’s and the lessons are given entirely in English. Numerous internationally renowned scientists from outside France also give seminars on their fields of expertise during the year.

Nanoscience and the challenges of tomorrow

Nanoscale objects present extraordinary properties that do not exist at the macroscopic scale. In physics, quantum mechanics come to the fore, while in the area of fluid mechanics, confinement provokes other laws. Being able to control matter at the nanoscale can allow the creation of devices with particular properties capable of being incorporated into existing devices or opening the field to new engineering applications. Nanoscience is at the vanguard of several disciplines: physics, chemistry, electronics, biology. It is being harnessed to meet the challenges of tomorrow found in areas covering health, renewable energy, communications and many other sectors.

Élèves sur le campus


The goal of this master’s programme is to train scientists capable of designing nanoscale devices. As such, students take interdisciplinary theoretical lessons in:

  • physics,
  • materials science,
  • matter techniques and characterisation,
  • nanoelectronics and/or nanobiotechnology if they wish to specialise or expand the scope of their knowledge.

At the same time, students gain practical expertise thanks to:

  • practical work,
  • laboratory placements (two in the first year, one in the second year).

During these placements, they use the laboratory’s research materials and immerse themselves in a highly demanding research environment (for example, work in a cleanroom).

There are also lessons on the social impact of nanotechnology, which forms part of the non-scientific side of the programme along with project management and classes on intellectual and industrial property, etc.

Programme du Master nanoscale

A complete description of the master’s curriculum is available at

Engineering students at Centrale Lyon who take the bioengineering and nanotechnology specialisation can enter the 2nd year of the Nanoscale Engineering Master’s degree. They then follow a portion of the courses and obtain equivalent credits.

Career prospects

After this degree, students can continue studying for a doctorate or enter the job market in high-tech companies in France or abroad (Thales, CEA, STMicroelectronics, Google, etc.).

  • Doctorates and scientific careers: the majority of graduates continue their studies for a PhD. There is a strong demand for master-level teachers for science undergraduates.
  • Private sector: electronics, materials (development and applications), biotechnology (analysis and pharmacology), tools and processes (characterisations and techniques).

Applications for the academic year 2023-2024

Students from Outside the European Union

The Campus France application is mandatory between October 1st and December 15th 2022 for non-EU students on:

Students must also complete the Ecole Centrale Lyon application form (see below).

All Students

Each applicant for an international master's degree must complete the Ecole Centrale Lyon application form, which is opened from  October 28th 2022 to January 31st 2023

To apply for the 1st year of the Master in Nanoscale Engineering:

To apply for the 2nd year of the Master in Nanoscale Engineering:

Documents you must provide

  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Personal statement
  • Copy of your passport or identity document
  • Passport or identity photo
  • An academic reference from one of your professors, from the last year of yourlatest academic programme
  • A reference from your employer if you are not currently registered as a student
  • Transcript of your academic results for the current year (Bachelor or Masters programme) and for all the preceding years of your university programmes.
  • Copy of the last degree certificate that you were awarded
  • English language certificate, level B2 – intermediate/advanced (Minimum levels: IELTS 5.0, TOIEC 400, EFSET 51, TOEFL IBT 72, Cambridge FCE, CECR B2, ILR 2, ACTFL Advanced mid, CLB 7, TOEIC 605) or documentary evidence of a minimum of three years of full time education conducted in the English language.