18-817: Applied Physics: Fundamentals of Semiconductors and Nanostructures

Units: 12

This course is designed to provide students with a foundation of the physics required to understand nanometer-scale structures and to expose them to different aspects of ongoing research in nanoscience and nanotechnology. Illustrative examples will be drawn from the area of semiconductor nanostructures, including their applications in novel and next-generation electronic, photonic, and sensing devices. The course begins with a review of basic concepts in quantum physics (wave-particle duality, Schrödinger's equation, particle-in-a-box, approximation methods in quantum mechanics, etc.) and then continues with a discussion of bulk three-dimensional solids (band structure, density of states, the single-electron effective-mass approximation). Size effects due to nanometer-scale spatial localization are then discussed within a quantum-confinement model in one-, two-, and three- dimensions for electrons. An analogous discussion for photons is also presented. The basic electronic, optical, and mechanical properties of the low-dimensional nanostructures are then discussed. A select number of applications in electronics, photonics, biology, chemistry, and bioengineering will be discussed to illustrate the range of utility of nanostructures. Upon completion of the course, students will have an appreciation and an understanding of some of the fundamental concepts in nanoscience and nanotechnology. The course is suitable for first-year graduate students in engineering and science (but advanced undergraduates with appropriate backgrounds may also take it with permission from the instructor).

3 hrs. lec.

Prerequisites: 09-511, 09-701, 09-702, 18-303, 18-310, 18-402, 27-770, 33-225, 33-234 or familiarity with the material or basic concepts covered in these courses and senior or graduate standing.


Applied Physics, Applied Physics (Solid State/Magnetics/Fields)

Last modified on 2006-04-06

Past semesters:

S13, S11, S09, S07, S06, S05