Skip navigation

MSE 37000  Electrical, Optical, and Magnetic Properties of Materials

Credits and Contact Hours: 3 credits. Weekly Schedule for 15 weeks: three 50 minute lectures.

Instructors or Course Coordinators: H. Wang and E. Kvam.

Textbook: Class Notes and Solymar and Walsh, "Lectures on the Electrical Properties of Materials", 6-7th ed., Oxford University Press.

Specific Course Information

  1. Catalog Description: An introductory course to provide basic background on the behavior of materials; electronic band structure, electronic and ionic conduction, electronic processes in semiconductors, dielectric, optical, and magnetic properties, and superconductivity; emphasis is on the relation between the properties and the structural aspects of materials.
  2. Prerequisites: MSE 23000, MSE 27000 and PHYS 24100 (or PHYS 27200).
  3. Course Status: MSE 37000 is a required course.

Specific Goals for the Course

1. All Students

A. Understand the physical origins of electronic, magnetic & optical properties of materials

  • Classical (Drude) theory of conduction
  • Schrödinger’s Equation and its solution in simple cases
  • Band theory & Free electron theory
  • Classical & quantum mechanical explanations of magnetic properties
  • Simplified quantum mechanical explanation of superconductivity

B. Understand the operational principles of basic solid-state devices

  • Bi-material junctions (the p-n junction, Ohmic & Schottky contacts)
  • Field effect transistors (Junction-FET, Metal-oxide-semiconductor-FET)
  • Light emitting diodes and lasers
  • Thin film based magnetic storage

C. Perform calculations to quantify material properties. Examples:

  • Hall Voltage given applied magnetic field.
  • Equilibrium vacancy concentration at a given temperature.
  • Atomic density of FCC and diamond crystal structure.
  • Contact potential for a pn junction; charge carrier injections under forward bias.

2. Most Students

A. Make appropriate qualitative and quantitative judgments regarding the effects of materials characteristics and/or processing variables on microstructure, composition, properties and device performance. Examples:

  • Understanding dopant effects on conductivity in semiconductors.
  • Understanding the relationship between alloy composition and band gap / optical properties in alloy semiconductors.
  • Proposing appropriate processing schemes for device creation.

B. Making appropriate connections between equations/calculations and physical phenomena. Examples:

  • Understanding how materials properties yield increased gain in transistors,
  • Understanding how band structure relates to variables in Schrödinger’s Equation.

Relation of Course to Student Outcomes:

(MSE-1, ABET-1) an ability to identify, formulate, and solve complex materials engineering problems by applying principles of engineering, science, and mathematics.

Topics Covered: Ohm’s Law, Hall Effect, wave addition, wave function, orbitals, bonding, work function, field emission, bandgap, density of states, metals, intrinsic and doped semiconductors, semiconductor processing, p/n junctions, metal-semiconductor junctions, transistors, lasers, dielectric polarization, piezoelectricity, ferroelectricity, magnetism, Meissner effect.