Master’s in science, technology and health – major: materials and nanosciences – specialization: surface engineering

The surface engineering specialization in this master’s is intended to train engineers in the materials field with a special interest in surfaces, interfaces and thin films.

Surface engineering

The aim of surface engineering is to study the properties of surfaces and improve them and to develop solutions for industrial applications. Optimizing design, choosing materials, changing the surface properties of materials by treatment or coating and optimizing of the conditions are the essential tasks in this field. One of the specificities of the master’s 2 course is to offer an introduction to surface characterization techniques and methods  with 50 hours of practical work on the scientific equipment in the laboratories of the Pôle Matériaux et Nanosciences d’Alsace.

course content

First year M1

The first year is common to one of the courses on the materials engineering or polymer engineering specializations that can be taken at the University of Strasbourg or UHA (University of Upper Alsace). Students who have completed Year 5 of the mechanical engineering course at INSA Strasbourg are exempted from the M1 year.

Second year M2

In the first semester, a large part of the teaching is common with that of INSA Strasbourg.

Mandatory common core modules:

  • physical and chemical properties of surfaces and interfaces
  • surface characterization
  • tribology of metal and organic surfaces
  • environment and surface treatments
  • personal project and practical training
  • preparation for working life
  • languages
  • thin metal films strand: choice of mandatory modules (two)

open to University of Strasbourg and INSA Strasbourg students:

  • physical or chemical deposition of thin films
  • application of thin films for optics, opto-electronics and semiconductors
  • electrochemistry and corrosion
  • rupture and damage
  • osteoarticular biomechanics
  • polymer surfaces and coatings strand: choice of mandatory modules (two)

open only to University of Strasbourg students:

  • adhesion and surface treatment
  • thin colloidal films
  • physical and mechanical properties of polymer surfaces
  • biomaterials: interaction with living tissues

In the second semester, students complete a 5-month internship, from February to June (industry or research). This is equivalent to a final course project (PFE) for INSA Strasbourg students.


This master’s degree can open the way to employment in a variety of industries (automotive, microelectronics, glass, etc.) with multiple applications, or it can be followed up with a PhD in fundamental or applied science.

Head of the surface engineering specialization

Anne Rubin – University of Strasbourg

Thierry Roland – INSA Strasbourg