Experimental Physical Chemistry:
Advanced Courses in Kinetics, Spectroscopy, and Surface Sciences and Vacuum Techniques

Overview

(For the current schedule, scroll down.)

The advanced lab course is the final physical chemistry practical course in which you are able to work with well established experiments specifically designed for you. Formerly a mandatory course for all chemistry students, the "PCF Praktikum"–german for Physikalisch-Chemisches Fortgeschrittenenpraktikum–has now been adapted to the increased flexibility of the master's program and has been divided into three topics, "Spectroscopy", "Chemical Kinetics", and "Surface Science and Vacuum Techniques." The participation in these lab courses is voluntary, but participating in at least one course is a prerequisite for the PC research internship, M.Che.1321. Each lab course includes a seminar presentation, two to three experiments, and a 15-minute oral final exam. It is weighted with 6 credits.

What can you expect from participating in a lab course, and what should you be aware of? We discuss the most important things in the following sections.

Experiments and general safety

As you are probably familiar with from previous practical lab courses, each experiment is accompanied by a discussion with the assistant lasting approximately one hour (colloquium). This is to ensure that you have thoroughly prepared for the respective experiment (keywords from the experimental instructions help with this) and can perform it without danger to yourself or others. Sources of danger in the lab course are, for example, lasers with high optical power, vacuum set-ups, or toxic gases. Your supervising assistant will show you the safe handling of the set-up at the beginning of the lab day. For this purpose, each experiment is accompanied by a safety folder with supporting documents. You may only use the experimental set-up after this safety briefing. Please bring your own personal protective equipment (lab coat and goggles) and wear long pants and closed shoes.

Reports

You have to hand in a report to the assistant no later than two weeks after the experiment has been carried out. After three submissions, the report must be approved, no later than two months after the last day of the lab course (final report approval deadline). Please note that the assistant may refuse to thoroughly correct the report should there be serious shortcomings or important content missing–you effectively lose one of the three submissions. The PCF Reporting Checklist (available in Stud.IP) will protect you from such problems, and it is best to read through it before writing the first report.

Seminar talks

In addition to the laboratory work, you will participate in a seminar during which you will listen to talks by other participants and also give a talk yourself. Your goal is to clearly explain a topic that is relevant to the lab course in 20 minutes. A handout of three to six pages will help you to do this. The talk will be supported by an assistant. In order to promote a lively discussion, we require that you ask at least one question in the seminar and record it along with your answer.

Misconduct

Unfortunately, misconduct in the lab course occurs regularly, to the detriment of all involved. This includes inadequate preparation of the experiment, negligent writing of the report, last-minute cancellation of lab course participation, failure to meet a submission deadline, and, at worst, violation of the rules of good research practice (GRP). The disadvantages of such behavior are obvious: avoidable extra work (negligence), unfair time constraints (stretching of deadlines), lost lab course places and working time (cancellations, GRP violations), loss of credibility, mistrust in scientific knowledge (GRP violations).

We sanction misconduct at a minimum by:

  • Repeating the experiment/presentation (inadequate performance in the colloquium, report after three submissions, seminar talk or handout; failure to meet submission deadlines).
  • Exclusion from the lab course (inadequate performance in two experiments, failure to meet final report approval deadline, violation of good research practice)
  • Suspension from registration in the following semester (short-term cancellation of participation, exclusion from the lab course)

Successful participation

Your participation will be particularly successful if you allow yourself sufficient time for the lab course, have a special interest in the subject matter and work carefully. Take advantage of the intensive supervision and benefit from the experience of your assistant: Ask questions! Address problems early on! Be aware of submission deadlines and complete your work on time! Be diligent! Your future self, browsing through your old PCF reports, will thank you.

Summer Semester 2022

(For the previous semester, click here.)

In the summer term, the lab courses run parallel to the lectures. We offer two courses: Course 1 at the beginning of the semester's lecture period (April, May) and Course 2 at the end (June, July), see the schedule below. Note that the courses each have their own preparatory meeting and deadlines. You can book both, the earlier and the later course, for example Course 1 in Spectroscopy (M.Che.1304) and Course 2 in Kinetics (M.Che.1305).

Preparatory Meeting (Vorbesprechung)

Course 1 and 2 each have their own preparatory meeting. The preparatory meeting for Course 1 will take place on Friday, February 25 from 1 PM to 2 PM, the meeting for Course 2 on April 1, 1 PM to 2 PM. The meetings will be implemented as video conferences via this StudIP group. The presentation slides of the preparatory meetings will be available there as well.

Please note that the StudIP groups for the actual lab courses are locked, i.e. you cannot enrol there directly (due to copyright restrictions of the course material). You will be enroled automatically, after you successfully registered for a course via the StudIP group of the preparatory meeting that is linked above.

If anything is unclear, contact Nils Lüttschwager (IPC Room 1.123, nluetts[at]gwdg.de).

Tentative Schedule

February 2022
Tue 01
Wed 02
Thu 03
Fri 04
Sat 05
Sun 06
Mon 07
Tue 08
Wed 09
Thu 10
Fri 11
Sat 12
Sun 13
Mon 14
Tue 15
Wed 16
Thu 17
Fri 18
Sat 19
Sun 20
Mon 21
Tue 22
Wed 23
Thu 24
Fri 25
PM1
Sat 26
Sun 27
Mon 28
March 2022
Tue 01
Wed 02
R1
Thu 03
R1
Fri 04
R1
Sat 05
Sun 06
Mon 07
R1
Tue 08
R1
Wed 09
DLT1
Thu 10
Fri 11
Sat 12
Sun 13
Mon 14
Tue 15
Wed 16
Thu 17
Fri 18
Sat 19
Sun 20
Mon 21
Tue 22
Wed 23
Thu 24
Fri 25
Sat 26
Sun 27
Mon 28
Tue 29
Wed 30
DLD1
Thu 31
April 2022
Fri 01
PM2
Sat 02
Sun 03
Mon 04
Tue 05
Wed 06
R2
Thu 07
R2
Fri 08
R2
Sat 09
Sun 10
Mon 11
R2
Tue 12
R2
Wed 13
R2
Thu 14
Fri 15
Sat 16
Sun 17
Mon 18
Tue 19
Wed 20
DLH1
Thu 21
Fri 22
C1
Sat 23
Sun 24
Mon 25
Tue 26
Wed 27
Thu 28
Fri 29
C1
Sat 30
May 2022
Sun 01
Mon 02
Tue 03
Wed 04
Thu 05
Fri 06
C1
Sat 07
Sun 08
Mon 09
Tue 10
Wed 11
DLT2
Thu 12
Fri 13
C1
Sat 14
Sun 15
Mon 16
Tue 17
Wed 18
Thu 19
Fri 20
Sat 21
Sun 22
Mon 23
Tue 24
Wed 25
Thu 26
Fri 27
Sat 28
Sun 29
Mon 30
Tue 31
June 2022
Wed 01
DLD2
Thu 02
Fri 03
Sat 04
Sun 05
Mon 06
Tue 07
Wed 08
Thu 09
Fri 10
Sat 11
Sun 12
Mon 13
Tue 14
Wed 15
Thu 16
Fri 17
Sat 18
Sun 19
Mon 20
Tue 21
Wed 22
DLH2
Thu 23
Fri 24
C2
Sat 25
Sun 26
Mon 27
Tue 28
Wed 29
Thu 30
July 2022
Fri 01
C2
Sat 02
Sun 03
Mon 04
Tue 05
Wed 06
Thu 07
Fri 08
C2
Sat 09
Sun 10
Mon 11
Tue 12
Wed 13
Thu 14
Fri 15
C2
Sat 16
Sun 17
Mon 18
Tue 19
Wed 20
Thu 21
Fri 22
Sat 23
Sun 24
Mon 25
Tue 26
Wed 27
Thu 28
Fri 29
Sat 30
Sun 31

Legend

PM : Preparatory meeting R : Registration (via StudIP) DLT : Deadline choose seminar topic DLD : Deadline submit handout draft DLH : Deadline submit handout C1 : Course 1 C2 : Course 2

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Revised