EX3: Crystallography

Module title: Crystallography (EX3)

Module convenor: Dr Semen Gorfman (University of Warwick)

Module aims:

The primary aim of this module is to provide the basic knowledge necessary for the description, understanding and investigation of crystalline materials. The secondary aim is to give a general idea on how the symmetry of a material is responsible for the unique physical properties of many crystals, e.g. piezoelectricity, optical activity etc.

Learning objectives:

After attending the module an understanding will be gained, of the terminology used in the scientific literature to describe the crystal morphology, crystal structure and physical properties of crystals. A general knowledge of the key X-ray and neutron diffraction techniques used to investigate the atomic structure of crystals will also be gained.


  1. Crystal morphology (what is responsible for the fascinating polyhedral shapes of single crystals)
  2. Crystal lattice (the main concept of crystallography, how to get it right?)
  3. Reciprocal lattice and Miller indices
  4. Symmetry of crystals (what is symmetry and what is so special about the symmetry of crystals?)
  5. Crystallographic nomenclature (without knowledge of this you will NOT be able to read ANY paper, discussing the atomic structure of a crystal)
  6. Physical properties of crystals (there are a number of important macroscopic properties of crystalline solids, which motivate the study of crystal structure)
  7. The overview of the X-ray and neutron diffraction technique for the investigating of crystal structures
Academic year: 
11/11/2010 - 15:00