Course detail

Practical Metallography

FSI-0PMAcad. year: 2017/2018

The course deals with the following topics: Basic methods of metal and ceramic materials structure observation. Preparation of metallographic cuts for various structure imaging methods, qualitative and quantitative evaluation of the structure in order to find connections among the structure, mechanical and physical properties of materials.

Learning outcomes of the course unit

Students will prepare metallographic samples for all evaluation methods, and evaluate structural components. They will be made familiar with the use of particular metallographic methods. They will be able to evaluate independently the relations among the technology, structure and utility properties of the material.


Students are expected to have general knowledge and basic knowledge of mathematics, physics and chemistry acquired at secondary school. They should have the basic knowledge with respect to the following fields of materials: the structure of metals and alloys, composite materials, constructional ceramics and materials for electronics.


Not applicable.

Recommended optional programme components

Not applicable.

Recommended or required reading

PTÁČEK, Luděk. Nauka o materiálu I. 2., opr. a rozš. vyd. Brno: Akademické nakladatelství CERM, c2003. ISBN 80-7204-283-1. (CS)
ASM handbook. Materials Park, Ohio: ASM International, 2004. ISBN 0-87170-706-3. (EN)
GUNN, Gus, ed. Critical metals handbook. Chichester: John Wiley, 2014. ISBN 978-0-470-67171-9. (EN)
ASM handbook. Materials Park, Ohio: ASM International, 2002. ISBN 0-87170-704-7. (EN)

Planned learning activities and teaching methods

The course is taught through lectures explaining the basic principles and theory of the discipline. Teaching is suplemented by practical laboratory work.

Assesment methods and criteria linked to learning outcomes

Course-unit credit is conditional on attendance at all lessons. Final grade reflects the result achieved in a written test where a student has to answer three questions; two theoretical and one practical.

Language of instruction


Work placements

Not applicable.


Students will be made familiar with the basic practical methods of the structure imaging, qualitative and quantitative evaluation of the structure. Students will observe and evaluate materials as needed for their diploma theses.

Specification of controlled education, way of implementation and compensation for absences

Attendance at seminars is compulsory. Absence from seminars may be compensated for by the agreement with the teacher.

Classification of course in study plans

  • Programme B3A-P Bachelor's

    branch B-FIN , 3. year of study, winter semester, 0 credits, optional (voluntary)

  • Programme B3S-P Bachelor's

    branch B-STI , 3. year of study, winter semester, 0 credits, optional (voluntary)

Type of course unit



13 hours, optionally

Teacher / Lecturer


1. Relation between structure and mechanical or physical properties.
2. Preparation procedure of metallographic samples.
3. Light microscopy.
4. Samples preparation for electron microscopy.
5. Steel and cast iron metallography.
6. Nonferrous metals, copper alloys.
7. Nonferrous metals, aluminium alloys.
8. Nonferrous metals, metallography of zinc alloys, metallography of heavy metals (composition).
9. Metallographic methods of studying selected degradation processes.
10. Metal complexes metallography.
11. Composite materials metallography.
12. Fractography.
13. Stereoscopic and stereometric metallography.

labs and studios

26 hours, optionally

Teacher / Lecturer


1. Work safety in a metallographic laboratory. Prediction of mechanical properties on the basis of structure characteristics.
2. Metallographic sampling for metallographic analysis. Selection of a metallographic sample position. Metallographic cut sample orientation, metallographic sample surface. Technological aspects of suitability of the sample selection. Influence of the sampling method on the structure.
3. Grinding, polishing of samples for light microscopy observation. Mechanical polishing, electrolytic polishing, chemical polishing. Laboratory techniques of semi-automatic and automatic preparation of metallographic samples. Etching, colour etching.
4. Structure observation of non-etching samples. Steel purity determination. Baumann printing. Etching samples observation (selection). Macroscopic etching and observation.
5. Replicas preparation. Foils preparation. Samples for scanning electron microscopy.
6. The most frequent types of steels selection and cast iron their structure valuation in terms of standards ČSN.
7. Individual work. Sample preparation and evaluation of the structure (method selection) of the given ferroalloy material.
8. Specific features of copper alloy samples preparation (Cu, Bronze cast and wrought, Brass cast and wrought)
9. Aluminium alloy (cast, wrought, hardenable and non-hardenable) sample preparation.
10. Study of corrosion (outlines). Study of cavitations. Possibilities of studying fatigue processes. Liquation, segregation and study of other non-homogeneities.
11. Bimetal and sandwich composites metallography. Basic aspects of ceramic-metallic materials, SAPs and sintered carbides preparation.
12. Systemization and classification of fractures. Fracture area evaluation methods.
13. Methods of the quantitative evaluation of the structure. Spatial arrangement of structure components (stereo-logical models).