Materials Science is the study and creation of new materials. Chemists are important as part of the world of materials science, because it is chemists who contribute a lot of knowledge to the creation of new materials. Chemists also help develop more information about the structure and the exact composition of new materials. It is also an important role of the chemist to study how we can synthesize and use the materials.

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Research into Chemical Properties

The main theory at the heart of materials science relates the microstructure of the materials being studied. The study of materials looks at this structure in relation to its physical properties and its chemical properties. By understanding the microstructure and the macromolecular structure, scientists can individually tailor the material’s properties to create customised or new materials. These new or custom materials can have special properties for particular uses across industry.

Jobs for Materials Scientists

There are many jobs that materials scientists are needed for. These scientists are employed by companies looking to develop new products made from rubber, metals and ceramics. These scientists also work to develop new types of paint and in biomedical industries. For example they might want to work to develop materials that are safe and fully compatible to use with human tissues in the medical industry, for creating prosthetics and implants. As implants are designed to be worn inside the body it is vital that safety measures are taken into account. While some implants can be made from bone, skin and other body tissues, others are made from metal, plastic, ceramic or other materials.

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Other important areas of research for materials scientists are polymers and composites. Many scientists also work with integrated-circuit chips and even fuel cells, as these are all important areas of research and development. One area where materials scientists could also work is in fabrics for the architecture and building industry. For example, researchers could look into the creation of fabric to create a tensile canopy, such as those sold by


Materials scientists tend to specialise in one material because the science covers so many different disciplines. For example, one could work with ceramic manufacturers or synthetic rubber makers. Others could look to research in paints and coatings for paint manufacturers or plastics makers. There are many opportunities for materials scientists in all these industries.

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Jeffrey Elder