# Mathematical methods for materials science

## Summary

The aim of the course is to review mathematical concepts learned during the bachelor cycle and apply them to concrete problems commonly found in engineering and Materials Science in particular.

## Content

In this course, we will briefly review the origins of important mathematical concepts, the main results and theorems, and train on how to apply them in a concrete way in relevant core problems found in materials science. This class is hence also a good review of some aspects of materials science core concepts such as diffusion, wave propagation, materials structure, mechanical properties, statistical and quantum mechanics, with an emphasis on setting up a problem mathematically and solving it.

Note that this course is not a mathematics class focused on theory and demonstrating theorems, but rather on mathematical methods to express and solve engineering problems. It is particularly suited for students who feel they need to learn better how to apply mathematical concepts to practical problems. It can also be interesting to revisit and bring practical mathematical skills up to speed for an engineering education at the Master and PhD level.

The concepts that we will revisit include:

- Usual functions and differentiation: Taylor expansion, manipulation of log, exponential, hyperbolics etc.. : examples in thermally activited phenomena, optics and semiconductor physics.

- Complex numbers: examples from Optical waves propagation to rheology.

- Integral calculations and Fourier transforms: examples in crystallography and quantum mechanics.

- Differential equations: examples in diffusion, wave equation, etc..

- Probability and Statistics: examples in Thermodynamics, and statistical and solid state physics.

- Linear algebra and Matrices: examples in mechanical properties of materials and quantum mechanics / solid states physics.

## Keywords

Mathematical Methods

Materials Science

## Learning Prerequisites

## Required courses

Algebra 1 and Analysis 1 to 4 of the EPFL BA curriculum, or equivalent.

## Learning Outcomes

By the end of the course, the student must be able to:

- Formulate a problem into a mathematical model / equations
- Exploit basics mathematical concepts needed to address common materials science problems
- Solve the mathematics of common problems in Materials science

## Transversal skills

- Continue to work through difficulties or initial failure to find optimal solutions.
- Demonstrate a capacity for creativity.

## Teaching methods

Ex cathedra classes with exercise sessions supported by the professor and assistants.

## Assessment methods

The final grade will be obtained over an exam at the Spring exam session. o

## Supervision

Office hours | Yes |

Assistants | Yes |

Forum | No |

## Resources

## Notes/Handbook

Detailed lecture slides with references will be made available as well as in-depth exercise corrections. Reference of books will be given.

## In the programs

**Semester:**Spring**Exam form:**Written (summer session)**Subject examined:**Mathematical methods for materials science**Lecture:**2 Hour(s) per week x 14 weeks**Exercises:**1 Hour(s) per week x 14 weeks

**Semester:**Spring**Exam form:**Written (summer session)**Subject examined:**Mathematical methods for materials science**Lecture:**2 Hour(s) per week x 14 weeks**Exercises:**1 Hour(s) per week x 14 weeks