MSc Polymer Technology
The joint Nordic Five Tech master's programme in Polymer Technology equips students with comprehensive tools needed to develop future materials in, for example, advanced health care, energy production, green packaging and surface coatings. Students study at two Nordic universities and graduate with two degrees. The programme takes full advantage of the strengths and research specialisations of each university.
Study at two Nordic universities
The joint master’s programme in Polymer Technology is a collaboration between the five leading technical universities in the Nordic countries (Nordic Five Tech). The programme gives you a unique opportunity to tailor your degree based on your academic interests. You will get to study at two of the partner universities, spending one year at each. You graduate with one master’s degree from each of the two universities. Nordic Five Tech is a strategic alliance consisting of:
- Aalto University in Finland
- Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden (not participating in this programme)
- Technical University of Denmark
- KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden
- Norwegian University of Science and Technology
The programme provides a solid base in the chemistry and physics of organic materials, as well as their connection to real-life applications. A broad range of courses and the choice of one of five specialisation tracks allow students to customise their degree and focus on individual areas of particular interest.
Students will learn about design, synthesis, characterisation, production and development of polymeric materials throughout the duration of the programme. The materials covered in the programme include plastics, rubber, composites, paper, wood and other biological materials. Students will be able to tackle challenges pertaining to the choice of raw materials (renewable versus fossil), and the choice of production processes, material combinations and manufacturing methods. Great emphasis is placed on environmental issues, such as environmentally-friendly material production and the development of sustainable materials.
This is a two year programme (120 ECTS credits) given in English. The first year covers a broad range of topics providing students with in-depth knowledge of the fundamentals of polymer technology and related areas. The curriculum also contains selective courses to prepare students for the second-year study track. Each university provides one specialisation track designed to deepen the students’ knowledge in a specific area. The tracks are:
- Biomaterial science (Aalto University)
- Polymer engineering (Technical University of Denmark)
- Macromolecular materials (KTH Royal Institute of Technology)
- Industrial processes (Norwegian University of Science and Technology)
In your application to the programme, you must include a summary sheet in which you indicate your study track and specify which universities you will attend in accordance with the mobility scheme.
The degree project is carried out in the last term of the second year of the programme. The degree project is, thus, undertaken at the second-year university in a research group or as a project in industry. The thesis is to be a synthesis of the knowledge and competencies gained in the three preceding terms. The thesis is supervised jointly with faculty from the student’s first- and second-year university. The results are presented as a written report and according to the rules at the first and second year university.
Degree projects that have previously been undertaken cover topics such as the design of bio-based replacements for commodity plastics or adhesives, scaffold fabrication for regenerative medicine applications, evaluation of the long-term properties of plastics, understanding fibre swelling and evaluation of the effect of fibre treatments on e.g. antibacterial properties.
Graduates from the programme receive two degrees, one from each of the two universities. The two diplomas will be supplemented with an insert describing the consortium and the programme. The titles on the diplomas will be:
- Aalto University: Master of Science (Technology) (120 credits)
- Technical University of Denmark: Master of Science in Engineering (120 credits)
- KTH Royal Institute of Technology: Master of Science (120 Credits)
- Norwegian University of Science and Technology: Master of Science (120 credits)
Find out what students from the programme think about their studies and life in the cities of the universities they attended.
Career opportunities for students from this programme are broad and international. Advanced skills in both fibre and polymer technology combined with a clear environmental focus provide an excellent basis for various careers in industry, government agencies and academia and graduates from the master programme are very attractive for many different industries such as the paper and forest industry, plastics, medical technology, pharmaceutical, coating and adhesive and packaging industry. Material expertise is also needed in many other sectors, ranging from transport to electronics.
The need for graduates with the competence offered by the programme will continue to be excellent and are projected to increase in the future.
Graduates from KTH have the knowledge and tools for moving society in a more sustainable direction, as sustainable development is an integral part of all programmes. The three key sustainable development goals addressed by the master's programme in Polymer Technology are:
Students in the programme learn how to research, design, and produce environmentally friendly materials that will replace many synthetic materials currently found in society. For example, nanocellulose-based fabrics may replace many synthetic-based fabric materials. As such, contributing to a toxin-free society will improve the health and well-being of humanity.
Students in the programme learn how to build resilient materials for use in infrastructure (for example composites, thermoplastics and formulated products). Students also learn how to promote inclusive and sustainable industrialisation by developing environmentally friendly materials that promote innovations in industrial material development.
A study in fibre and polymer technology naturally involves the responsible use of materials and sustainable production. In particular, this relates to the development of new materials with superior properties, leading to lower consumption of materials, a longer life-time and considerations of end-of-life scenarios for materials.
Faculty and research
All member universities of the Nordic Five Tech alliance are prominent in the field of Chemical Engineering. In the 2019 NTU Chemical Engineering ranking four out of the five universities are ranked top 100 in the world and in the equivalent QS Subject Ranking, four out of five universities make the top 50 in Europe.