Imperfections in Crystalline Solids


Learning objective(s)

Materials properties are to a large degree determined by defects. In metallic materials mechanical properties are to a large extent determined by dislocations and their interactions with each other and with other defects such as precipitates and grain boundaries. Phenomena like recrystallization too, are strongly influenced by dislocations.  It follows that any in-depth understanding of materials properties requires a study of dislocations and grain boundaries, their morphology, formation, interactions and mobility. In this course we will study defects guided by the final seven chapters of the recently published book ”Imperfections in Crystalline Solids” by Wei Cai and William Nix, two esteemed materials scientists.  The course will be heavily geared towards applications by means of exercises.



Part III. Dislocations:

8. Dislocation geometry

9. Dislocation mechanics

10. Dislocation interactions and applications

11. Partial and extended dislocations

12. Dislocation core structure

Part IV. Grain Boundaries:

13. Grain boundary geometry

14. Grain boundary mechanics.

Chapters 1-7 introduce the nomenclature, but they will not be the topic of the class. These chapters can serve as a warm-up for students with mediocre prior knowledge.



MSc in Physics, Chemistry, Materials Science, Mechanical Engineering


Course Material

“Imperfections in crystalline solids”


Wei Cai, Stanford University, California

William D. Nix, Stanford University, California

Date Published: September 2016

ISBN: 9781107123137



ECTS credits

1.5 ECT(= 5 GS credits)


Dr.Ir. Marcel Sluiter and

Prof.Dr. Guido Janssen

Course dates

 March 2019, at 13:30 hrs; following (weekly) meetings by mutual agreement

Location: 34H-4-250

Assessment & crediting

Everybody makes the selected exercises at the end of each chapter. Per session the exercises of one chapter are discussed.

After the completion of the course five GS credits are awarded.


PhD candidates wishing to participate should contact Dr.Ir Marcel Sluiter by email before the start of the course, indicating their primary study, supervisor/promoter and preferred start date.