Physics 3000: Physics of Device Materials

3000 Physics of Device Materials is an introduction to the physics of materials, particularly group IV and III-V semiconductors, used in common technological devices. It covers fundamental concepts including structures of crystalline solids, quantum mechanics and statistical mechanics of charge carriers, equilibrium charge carrier concentrations, carrier transport and excess carrier phenomena. These concepts are applied to multi-material devices including pn and metal semiconductor junctions, metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistors, photovoltaic devices, light-emitting diodes, and solid-state lasers.

PR: PHYS 1051

The remarkable progress in electronics technology since the 1950s has resulted from the ongoing development of techniques to increase the density and speed of semiconducting devices in integrated circuits. The ability of semiconducting devices to generate and respond to light has also revolutionized communications. Fundamentally, the functions of nearly all semiconducting devices rely on their capacities to control current. This capacity is a direct consequence of the physics of charge carriers in semiconducting materials and of the way in which the energy levels accessible to such charge carriers change at junctions between differently modified semiconducting materials or between metals and semiconductors. This course relates the physics of semiconducting materials (crystal structures, quantum mechanics, carrier statistics, and carrier transport properties) to their applications in simple devices (including pn junctions, metal semiconductor junctions, metal-oxide semiconductor field-effect transistors, and optical devices). This course is required for Term III Electrical and Computer Engineering students but also provides an introduction to solid-state physics concepts for physics students.

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