Module Details

The information contained in this module specification was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change, either during the session because of unforeseen circumstances, or following review of the module at the end of the session. Queries about the module should be directed to the member of staff with responsibility for the module.
Title Advanced Chemistry (Distance Learning)
Code CHEM340
Coordinator Dr RP Bonar-Law
Year CATS Level Semester CATS Value
Session 2021-22 Level 6 FHEQ Whole Session 30

Pre-requisites before taking this module (or general academic requirements):

CHEM214 Coordination and Organometallic Chemistry of the d-Block Metals; CHEM245 Preparative Chemistry: Synthesis and Characterisation; CHEM280 Key Skills for Chemists 2; CHEM231 CHEM231 - Organic Chemistry II; CHEM246 CHEM246 - Measurements in Chemistry; CHEM260 Physical Chemistry II 


The overall aim of this module is to consolidate and extend second year knowledge of Organic, Inorganic and Physical chemistry.

Organic: Year 2 synthetic chemistry is extended to cover pericyclic reactions, rearrangements and fragmentations, radical reactions and synthesis of alkenes. Basic concepts and techniques of physical organic chemistry are explained concurrently, including free energy diagrams and kinetic analysis of common mechanisms.

Inorganic: Year 2 inorganic chemistry is extended to
• Enhance students' understanding of the fundamental nature of ordered crystalline solids
• Develop the concept that the structure of materials impacts on their properties and applications
• Provide an introduction to the use of diffraction methods to characterise crystal structures
• Describe characterisation techniques, for both crystalline and amorphous materials.
• Outline electronic structure in the solid state.
• Describe a range of materials manufacturing techniques.

Physical: To demonstrate the relationship between microscopic and macroscopic models for physical chemical phenomena and the physical chemistry of electrochemical cells, surfactants and colloids.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) Organic learning outcomes:
*  Demonstrate a good understanding of the core synthetic reactions covered and their mechanisms.
* Be able to deduce mechanisms on the basis of kinetic and other evidence.

Inorganic learning outcomes:
* Understand and describe the characteristics of the crystalline solid state
* Be able to perform simple analyses of powder X-ray diffraction data
* Describe the factors affecting the crystal structures formed by ionic compounds
* Understand that solid structures directly influences the physical and functional properties of materials, and describe examples
* Understand the solid-state electronic structure of inorganic materials
* Understand the microscopic origins of magnetism, and describe the mechanisms which lead to collective magnetic behaviour
* Interpret magnetic data and classify types of inorganic magnetic materials.
* Recognise the uses of magnetic materials.

Physical learning ou tcomes:
* Understand how macroscopic physical properties of a system are related to microscopic properties of molecules.
* Understand how to derive thermodynamic variables from the energy levels available to a set of particles (molecules, electrons, photons).
* Have an understanding of the physical chemistry of ideal and real electrochemical cells.
* Have an understanding of the physical chemistry of surfactants and colloids.
* Be able to apply their knowledge of physical chemistry to solve unseen problems.

(S1) Improving own learning/performance - Personal action planning

(S2) Time and project management - Personal organisation

(S3) Critical thinking and problem solving - Critical analysis

(S4) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Presentation skills - written

(S5) Information skills - Critical reading

Teaching and Learning Strategies

This is distance learning module in which students are expected to work through the course text books in conjunction with lecture notes and screencasts according to the schedule provided in VITAL. Sets of assignment problems are set at two week intervals to assess progress. Students submit work online according to the timetable provided and receive feedback on the work within one week.



Organic synthesis and reactions (Greeves, 13 lectures)
• Pericyclic reactions 1: cycloadditions
• Pericyclic reactions 2: Sigmatropic and electrocyclic reactions
• Rearrangements and Fragmentations
• Radical reactions
• Synthesis of alkenes - controlling double bond geometry
Organic Mechanisms (Bonar-Law, 8 lectures)
• Rates, equilibria and free energy diagrams
• Kinetics for multistep reactions
• Revision of nucleophilic substitution at saturated carbon
• Elimination mechanisms
• Addition mechanisms
• Nucleophilic substitution at carbonyls

Introduction to Solid State Chemistry (Chong, 10 lectures)
• Basic concepts in crystalline solids (builds on CHEM111)
◦ What is a crystal? – lattices, unit cells, symmetry
◦ Describing cryst al structures – fractional coordinates, Miller indices
◦ Close packing of spheres in metallic solids
◦ Simple ionic solids derived from close-packed structures
◦ Rationalising structure types using radius ratio rule, and its limitations
• Diffraction characterisation of crystalline solids
◦ Interference of waves, Braggs'' law
◦ Concept of the reciprocal lattice, relation to the direct lattice and diffraction
◦ Diffraction intensities and systematic absences
◦ Experimental aspects of X-ray diffraction and uses of powder X-ray diffraction (PXRD)
◦ Application of concepts to indexing PXRD patterns and deducing lattice centring
◦ Limitations and complementary experimental methods (scattering, spectroscopy, imaging and microscopy techniques - continued in Manufacturing Materials)
• Soli d state structures of functional inorganic materials
◦ Structure-function relationships and applications of functional crystalline solids
◦ Polymorphism - concept and examples in ionic solids, contrasts in physical properties
◦ Spinels - normal vs. inverse structures and contributing factors
◦ Perovskites - use of tolerance factor to predict perovskite distortion
◦ Covalent solids - properties and structures of carbon allotropes
◦ Framework solids - structures and properties of zeolites, metal-organic frameworks
• Introducing complexity
◦ Hybrid structures (MOFs, hybrid perovskites, fullerides)
◦ Structure of the YBCO high temperature superconductor as a perovskite superstructure
◦ Structure of point and extended defects
◦ Doping, non-stoichiometry and disorder
◦ Influence of defect structure on functional properties and applications (examples from ionic conduction, MOFs)

Electronic and Magnetic Materials (Claridge, 10 Lectures)
• Electrons in Solids
Qualitative description of distinction between metals, semi-conductors, and insulators (atomic vs. molecular electronic structure)
Density of states and Fermi energy, and experimental evidence for these concepts
Conductivity (Carrier density and temperature dependence)
Electronic structure of simple metals and transition metals
Band gap manipulation (Semi-conductor doping / Silicon vs. III/V systems)
Mott-Hubbard insulators and the breakdown of the band model
•Introduction to magnetochemistry
Introduce the concept that solids contain magnetic moments that interact with one another in a variety of different ways, giving rise to a diverse range of exciting and useful bulk materials properties
Describe several key manifestations and applications of m agnetism as well as compare orders of magnitude of magnetic field strengths
Familiarise with units of magnetism
•The origin of magnetism in materials
Revisit spin and orbital angular momenta and their relevant quantum numbers and magnetic moments
Introduce the Bohr magneton as a convenient unit for atomic magnetism
•Magnetic moments of isolated atoms or ions
Describe the coupling of spin and orbital angular momenta and revise Hund’s rules to arrive at ground state magnetic moments and term symbols of rare-earth ions
Describe the effects of crystal fields and orbital quenching of magnetic moments of 3d transition metals to arrive at a spin-only formula
Compare calculated and observed magnetic moments of rare-earth and transition metal ions
• Magnetisation and magnetic susceptibility
Classify diamagnets and paramagnets by the sign and temperature-dependence of their magnetic susceptibilities and compare some co mmon materials
For paramagnetism, demonstrate Curie’s Law and how – through the measurement of bulk magnetic susceptibility – we can determine the atomic magnetic moment of a material
• Magnetic interactions in the solid state
Compare ferromagnetic, antiferromagnetic and ferrimagnetic states, with examples, that can be produced via magnetic interactions
Consider the energy scale of the dipolar interaction to show that this is too low in energy to account for the high-temperature magnetic order observed in many magnetic materials
Describe the concept of exchange to derive the Heisenberg Hamiltonian. Outline how exchange can occur directly, but more frequently indirectly through the indirect super exchange mechanism
Make use of orbital overlap diagrams to show how 90º and 180º bonding interactions lead to ferro- and antiferromagnetic orders, respectively

The link between molecular and thermodynamic pr operties (Hodgson, 10 lectures)
• Introduction: the link between microscopic and macroscopic descriptions of chemistry.
• Concepts of statistical mechanics: configurations, weights, most probable distribution and deviations from this. Partition functions for translation, rotation and vibration.
• Maxwell Boltzmann statistics and application to an ideal gas
• Relation of the partition function to entropy and other macroscopic thermodynamic variables and equilibrium constants
• Fermi Dirac statistics and application to a simple metal
• Bose Einstein statistics and application to blackbody radiation
Ionic species and electrochemistry (Nichols, 10 lectures)
• Electrolytes and electrochemical thermodynamics: Structure of liquids. Ion-solvent interactions. Examples of ionic hydration energies. Activities of ions. Half-cell reactions and standard electrode potentials.
• Tran sport properties in liquids: Conductivity and mobility.
• Introduction to surface chemistry: Liquid surfaces, surface tension and capillary rise. The Young equation. Contact angles and surface wetting. Detergents and surfactants.
• Introduction to colloidal chemistry: Structure of colloidal solutions. Origin of colloid stability. Lyophilic and Lyophobic colloids. Structures and properties of amphiphilic molecules. Critical micelle concentration.

Recommended Texts

Reading lists are managed at Click here to access the reading lists for this module.

Teaching Schedule

  Lectures Seminars Tutorials Lab Practicals Fieldwork Placement Other TOTAL
Study Hours             0
Timetable (if known)              
Private Study 300


EXAM Duration Timing
% of
Penalty for late
online time-controlled exmination  3 hours + 1 for uplo    40       
CONTINUOUS Duration Timing
% of
Penalty for late
twelve problem sets (4 from each area of chemistry) each set two weeks apart Standard UoL penalties apply for late submission. There is no re-submission opportunity. These assignments are not mark  12 sets    60