Physics of the New Materials


The purpose of this modular advanced course is to show how developments of some fundamental concepts of modern physics are applied in the innovation fields such as nanoscience and nanotechnology (dimensionality), Liquid crystals and superconductivity.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Ana Cristina Gomes da Silva, Gregoire Marie Jean Bonfait


Weekly - 2

Total - 26

Teaching language



First cycle

Solid State Physics

Quantum mechanics


Casquilho, J.P e Cortez Teixeira P.I.., Introdução à Física Estatística,  IST Press, Coleção Ensino da Ciência e da Tecnologia (2011)

Slides/Notes of Prof. Bonfait 

Slides/Notes Prof Helena Godinho

Slides/Notes Prof Ana G Silva, Scientific journal articles, papers

Teaching method

Lectures and problem-solving sessions

Evaluation method

Physics of Liquid Crystals: mini tests in class
Superconductivity, Reduced Dimensions: 1 test of one hour each.

Approval of the discipline:
1) Final grade for approval
(= sum of the grades of the 3 modules / 19)≥ 10
2) Minimum grades: given the order 04/2020 - there will be no minimum grade for the tests.
3) The grade of a module (obtained by test, or by exam) is valid throughout the year 2020-2021 (Examination Appeal or Special). It is not a priori valid for the following year.
4) In the appeal exams or special exams, a failed student can only repeat the part of the evaluation of the modules in which he / she had a grade lower than 10 values.

Students approved in “normal season” can “improve” the modules they want by registering at “Improvement” at CLIP

Subject matter


I- Phenomenology of superconductivity.
Resistivity and Meissner effect, Phase diagrams, Type I and II superconductors.
II- Introduction to phenomenological theories.
London theory. Field penetration length. Ginzburg-Landau theory: vortices, Bc1 and Bc2.
III- Application to superconducting coils

 Physics of Low/reduced-dimensional systems

1. Electronic structure of 0D, 1D and 2D near valence and conductions bands.
2. The concept of electronic sub-bands.
3. Joint density of states 0D, 1D and 2D.
4. Representatives systems of quantum dots; wells, nanowires, graphene and related 2D systems; C60, CNTs, graphene and related 2D systems.

 Physics of Liquid Crystals

Introduction - What is a liquid crystal - Exercises
Order Parameter - Exercises
Elasticity of curvature - Exercises
Brief Introduction to Nematodynamics - Exercise


Programs where the course is taught: