Carnegie Mellon University

Randy Feenstra

Randy Feenstra

Courtesy Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering
Professor, Physics

  • 6408 Wean Hall
  • 412-268-6961
Address 5000 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213


Professor Feenstra's research deals with structural and electronic properties of semiconductor materials and devices. The major technique used in the studies is the scanning tunneling microscope, which allows one to image the atomic structure of a surface and to perform spectroscopic measurements of the electronic energy levels. Recent work has concentrated on semiconductor heterostructures consisting of multiple layers of different types of material, with the goal of understanding how the structure of the device (including imperfections and defects) determines its electronic properties.

Semiconductor materials growth is performed in Professor Feenstra's laboratory using molecular beam epitaxy. This system is devoted to the growth of gallium nitride films on sapphire and SiC substrates. These films have application for blue light emitters and high-power field-effect transistor devices. Studies focus on understanding the film growth, including nucleation, growth kinetics and strain relaxation, with the goal of preparing improved films for device applications


PhD, 1982 
Applied Physics 
California Institute of Technology

MS, 1980 
Applied Physics 
California Institute of Technology

BS, 1978 
Engineering Physics 
University of British Columbia