MENA3100 - Characterization of materials

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

Characterization of materials at the micrometer, nanometer and atomic scale using microscopy/diffraction and spectroscopic techniques.

Microscopy/diffraction techniques:
Light microscopy, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), transmission electron microscopy/diffraction (TEM), x-ray diffraction (XRD) and neutron diffraction.

Spectroscopic techniques:
Electron induced x-ray emission (EDS) in SEM and TEM. Electron energy loss spectroscopy (EELS) in TEM, and x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS).

Learning outcome

After the course, students should be able to:

  • understand and describe the fundamental principles behind the methods of characterization which are included in the curriculum.
  • analyze, interpret and present observations from the different methods.
  • evaluate the uncertainty of observations and results from the different methods.
  • assess which methods of characterization are appropriate for different material problems.
  • cooperate on a common project, and within time limits present a written report and oral presentation.


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Formal prerequisite knowledge

In addition to fulfilling the Higher Education Entrance Qualification, applicants have to meet the following special admission requirements:

One of these:

  • Mathematics R1
  • Mathematics (S1+S2)

And and in addition one of these:

  • Mathematics (R1+R2)
  • Physics (1+2)
  • Chemistry (1+2)
  • Biology (1+2)
  • Information technology (1+2)
  • Geosciences (1+2)
  • Technology and theories of research (1+2)

The special admission requirements may also be covered by equivalent studies from Norwegian upper secondary school or by other equivalent studies. Read more about special admission requirements (in Norwegian).

The following HSE courses must also be taken in the same semester or earlier than MENA3100:

For students taking MENA3100 Spring 2015 or later, you must first pass the two HSE courses MNHMS0015 and MNHMS0015ES before you may includeMENA3100 as part of a degree.

Recommended previous knowledge

MENA1000 - Materialer, energi og nanoteknologi, MENA3000 - Funksjonelle materialer, KJM1120 - Uorganisk kjemi, KJM1130 - Fysikalsk kjemi, FYS2140 - Kvantefysikk / KJM2400 - Analytisk kjemi

Overlapping courses

The information about overlap between courses might not be complete. Please contact the Dept. of Physics if you have further enquiries about overlap.


The course extends over a full semester with 80 hours teaching (32 hours lectures, the rest is colloquia, demonstrations and laboratory work related to the compulsory project).


Deadline for delivering the report on the project work primo May. There will be an individual oral examination based on the report. There will be a written 4-hour exam at the end of the semester. The written exam has 70 % weight and the project work 30 %. Letter grade.

For detailed information about examinations at the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences please see

Allowed aids: All.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Students who can document a valid reason for absence from the regular examination are offered a postponed examination at the beginning of the next semester.

Re-scheduled examinations are not offered to students who withdraw during, or did not pass the original examination.


This course can preferably be combined with KJM3100 - Chemistry of Materials (discontinued) or KJM3500 - Surface and nano chemistry (discontinued) if your interests are within materials chemistry. Students who are interested in materials physics should combine it with FYS3410 - Condensed matter physics. A useful third course in spring semester is MEF5000 - Nanoteknologi (discontinued) or KJM2010 - Undergraduate Research I (continued).

Facts about this course






Every spring


Every spring

Teaching language

Norwegian (English on request)