BEng Civil Engineering / Course details

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Materials 2 (Civil)

Course unit fact file
Unit code CIVL20152
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 2
Teaching period(s) Semester 2
Available as a free choice unit? No


The unit builds on and expands the topics of concrete, metals and corrosion which were introduced in Materials 1 (Civil). Additionally, polymer and glass materials are introduced.  In this unit the properties of these materials are illustrated with examples from construction practice.  Deterioration mechanisms (and their prevention) are examined in more detail.


Unit title Unit code Requirement type Description
Materials 1 (Civil) CIVL10152 Pre-Requisite Compulsory


To provide a detailed coverage of the technology of a range of the most widely used Civil Engineering construction materials and the modifications available to prevent or ameliorate deterioration mechanisms. Performance enhancement of concrete, steel, polymers and glass will also be studied.


Concrete: Cement types and specification, Concrete specification, Properties of concrete, Strength gain in concrete, Admixtures, Placement of concrete, Special concretes, Durability, Additives, Sustainability, Recent developments and New trends

Metals: Microstructure, phase diagrams, performance and application of plain carbon steel (including heat treatment and welding), Cast Iron, Aluminium and its alloys.

Corrosion: Mechanisms and remediation (pit & crevice corrosion, protective oxides, corrosion in reinforcement, cathodic protection and design considerations)

Polymers: overview and historical development, chemical structure, main types used in construction, behaviour under stress (creep and stress relaxation), glass transition temperature, degradation mechanisms and their prevention.

Glass: historical development, chemistry and mechanical properties, strengthening methods, structural glazing.

Knowledge and understanding

Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the fundamental properties and performance of cement and steel based construction materials.
Recognise potential defects and explain how these are detected.
Demonstrate understanding of general and localised corrosion processes.
Link knowledge of the individual materials into a wider engineering context.

Assessment methods

Method Weight
Written exam 80%
Written assignment (inc essay) 20%

Feedback methods


        • General feedback on performance after the exam board on Blackboard

        • Individual script viewing.


        • Feedback on Blackboard within 15 working days of submission

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 30
Practical classes & workshops 2
Independent study hours
Independent study 68

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Martin Simmons Unit coordinator

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