Basic Polymer Science


Trainers: Professor John Ebdon and Dr Barry Hunt

This three day course will run 20-22 November 2017 at the Novotel Sheffield Centre. The price for this course is £990. To register your interest in attending the course please contact us.


Course Overview

This course provides an introduction to polymer science and technology and covers basic aspects of the nature of polymers, their synthesis, their structures, their properties, their processing and their applications.

It is taught by two lecturers who have a wealth of experience in polymer training and research at graduate and postgraduate level. They have both successfully taught short courses on aspects of polymer science and technology for a wide variety of clients, including both educational institutions and industrial companies, e.g. Shell, Unilever, ICI, and Exxon.

Is it right for me?

The course is suitable for those with a background in science or technology, ideally including chemistry taken at an Advanced Level or equivalent, who are seeking to acquire a general appreciation of the fundamentals of polymer science and technology. We expect candidates for the course to include recent graduates who are about to undertake projects involving polymers either in industry or academia, more experienced scientists who are seeking to broaden their knowledge and experience in the materials area, and those wishing to acquire a sound understanding of the basics of polymer science and technology as a prelude, perhaps, to taking a more advanced course in aspects of polymers, such as our more advanced polymer modules and courses taught by members of the Polymer Centre at the University of Sheffield.

The following demonstration was filmed on the the Spring 2012 course:

Basic polymer science training demonstration – the Nylon Rope trick:

The reaction between hexane-1,6-diamine (hexamethylene diamine) in water and decanedioyl dichloride (sebacoyl chloride) in hexane produces nylon 6:10 at the interface between the solutions.

The nylon can be drawn off as a continuous fibre.

Demonstration credits: Prof. J. Ebdon and Dr Barry Hunt, photography by Ron Adams, May 2012


Typical course program

Day 1

Simple chain and step reaction polymerization mechanisms, molar masses, distributions and measurement, polymer solubility and polymer Solutions.

An industrial presentation with a Q&A session is included. Additionally, a networking and drinks reception follows after the first day’s tuition, as an opportunity to network with the course tutors and fellow course delegates.

Day 2

Copolymerization, physical states and thermal transitions, branched polymers and polymer networks. Analysis and Characterization of Polymers, Controlled Polymer Synthesis Mechanical, Optical and Electronic Properties of Polymers

Day 3

Polymer Degradation and Stabilization, Polymerization Processes, Polymer Blends and Polymer Composites, Processing of Polymers, Applications of Selected Polymers