Students in UCLouvain start working on their master theses at the beginning of the first semester; thus, they spread their experimental work over two semesters, and are allowed to select 30 credits of course over the two semesters. This is also true for FAME students, unless they engage into a master thesis outside UCLouvain in which case they should follow all lectures during the first semester and work on their master thesis only during the second semester.
If you are selected as FAME student in UCLouvain, you will thus have to choose a specific master thesis project upon arrival in Belgium (over the 2-3 first weeks of the academic year). A list of possible topics will be given to you as a starting point, but you will be authorized to select topics outside this list after a discussion with the local coordinator. Master theses can also be performed in collaboration with a company or in another lab outside UCLouvain. This requires finding a professor in UCLouvain willing to supervise the work, and certifying its scientific interest with respect to the objectives of the FAME master in UCLouvain (Engineering of Materials and Nanostructures). Some professors also propose topics in collaboration with industry.
Your master thesis should be performed in one of the three research institutes dealing with Materials Science. A large field of systems and applications is covered, including catalysis, solid state physics, nanotechnology, micro-electro-mechanical systems, polymer science, biosensors, metals and ceramics, nanocomposites, etc. More information on the research led in these institutes and their divisions is available below :
- Institute of Condensed Matter and Nanoscience (IMCN)
- Institute of Mechanics, Materials and Civil Engineering (IMMC)
- Institute of Information and Communication Technologies, Electronics and Applied Mathematics (ICTEAM)
These institutes also host a series of technological platforms, including :
- the newly refurbished clean rooms of UCLouvain (WinFab);
- a large range of materials characterization tools such as 200 keV TEM, SEM, a couple of AFMs, XR diffraction and reflectometry, SIMS, XPS, ellipsometry, DSC, TGA, FTIR, UV-Vis, NMR, He cryostats, dilution fridge, 17T magnets, and mechanical testing;
- a large range of materials processing tools including extruders, injection machine, hot plates, metals processing tools, etc.;
- the scientific computing center of UCLouvain.