3.21 | Spring 2006 | Graduate

Kinetic Processes in Materials


This page presents various course policies and a course calendar.

Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 3 sessions / week, 1.5 hours / session

Recitations: 1 session / week, 1 hour / session


3.012, 3.022, 3.044, or permission of instructor.


Balluffi, R. W., S. M. Allen, and W. C. Carter. Kinetics of Materials. New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons, 2005. ISBN: 9780471246893.


For most class sessions, homework problems will be suggested from the course textbook. These problems will not be graded, but students are strongly encouraged to work through them and consult the solutions in the book as needed.


Three 90 minute exams will be given during the term.

Grading Policy

The course grading is based on equal weight among the three exams (1/3 each).

Course Calendar

The calendar below provides information on the course’s lecture (L) and recitation (R) sessions.

L1 Introduction: Fields and Gradients; Fluxes; Continuity Equation
R1 Recitation
L2 Irreversible Thermodynamics
L3 Driving Forces and Fluxes for Diffusion; Self-Diffusion and Interdiffusion
R2 Recitation
L4 Interdiffusion; Effects of Electrical Potential, Capillarity, and Stress on Diffusion Potential
L5 Effects of Capillarity and Stress on Diffusion
L6 The Diffusion Equation
R3 Recitation
L7 Solutions to the Diffusion Equation - I
L8 Solutions to the Diffusion Equation - II
L9 Solutions to the Diffusion Equation - III
R3 Recitation
L10 Activated Jump Processes
L11 Diffusion Resulting from Discrete Jumps
L12 Diffusion in Crystals
R4 Recitation
  Exam 1
L13 Atomic Models for Diffusivities - I
L14 Atomic Models for Diffusivities - II
R5 Recitation
L15 Short-Circuit Diffusion in Crystals
L16 Diffusion in Noncrystalline Materials
L17 Surface Evolution Due to Capillary Forces
R6 Recitation
L18 Particle Coarsening
L19 Grain Growth
L20 Diverse Short Topics: Anisotropic Surfaces, Diffusional Creep, and Sintering
R7 Recitation
  Exam 2
L21 General Features of Phase Transformations
R8 Recitation
L22 Spinodal Decomposition and Continuous Ordering
L23 Spinodal Decomposition Kinetics
R9 Recitation
L24 Nucleation
L25 Heterogeneous Nucleation
L26 Diffusional Growth
R10 Recitation
L27 Morphological Stability of Moving Interfaces
L28 Kinetics of Nucleation and Growth Transformations
R11 Recitation
  Exam 3