Skip to main content

Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin

Trinity Menu Trinity Search



You are here Study Physics > Current Undergraduate

PYU44P03 Condensed Matter and Nanoscience

                                                                                                         
Michaelmas Term, Hilary Term – 48 lectures/tutorials – 10 credits (JMD Coey, P Stamenov, J Coleman)

Part I: Semiconductor Devices
Part II: Metal Physics and Superconductivity
Part III: Nanoscience

Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Describe the characteristic physical properties of a superconductor (zero resistance, Meissner effect, absence of electronic heat capacity, isotope effect)
  • Relate the physical properties to underlying theoretical concepts, especially the energy gap, electron pairing and the two characteristic lengths
  • Manipulate the Ginzburg-Landau expression for the free energy to reproduce the phase transition
  • Describe in detail the physics of bipolar and unipolar homojunction and heterojunction semiconductor devices, as well as how they are fabricated in both discrete and integrated forms
  • Evaluate and predict through analytical calculations the performance of such devices, i. e. their input, output and/or their transfer characteristics 
  • Integrate the elements of module material to yield an appreciation of potential applications of superconductivity and semiconductor physics in a wide range of electronic devices
  • Achieve the learning outcomes for the Nanoscience module PYU44P04.

 

Syllabus

Part I: Semiconductor Devices
Construction techniques for devices. The planar process, diodes and bipolar transistors. Integrated circuit design. MOSFETs, LEDs and compound semiconductor devices, including Gunn devices, Esaki diodes and high-performance heterojunction transistors.  The specialised semiconductor laboratory introduces the students to the manufacturing process and testing requirements of commercial integrated digital electronics.  The complete PMOS-FET process is demonstrated and practised by the students.

Part II: Metal Physics and Superconductivity
This course provides a basic account of the phenomena and theory of superconductivity, and its applications including high-Tc oxide superconductors. Resistivity of normal metals: impurity scattering, temperature dependence of resistivity due to electron-phonon scattering. Superconductivity: zero resistance, Meissner effect, thermodynamic treatment of the phase transition. Energy gap from specific heat and tunnelling. Type I and II superconductors. Phenomenological Ginzburg-Landau theory. Penetration depth. Cooper pairs. Correlation length. Results of BCS theory Flux quantization, tunnelling, ac and dc Josephson effects.

Part III: Nanoscience
The syllabus for this part of the module is given in the following entry for Nanoscience PYU44P04.

Assessment

Weighting

Examination in Semiconductor Devices 

25%

Examination in Metal Physics and Superconductivity

25%

Examination in Nanoscience 

50%