Semiconductor Electronics

Subject description

Classifications of semiconductors. Carrier transport phenomena. Carrier generation and recombination.

The pn junction diode: ideal and nonideal current-voltage relationship, small-signal model of the pn junction, junction breakdown, diode transients. Special diode types: the tunnel diode, the Schottky barrier diode, hetero-junction diode. Examples of the use of diodes.

The bipolar transistor: current-voltage relationship, the modes of operation, amplification with bipolar transistors, equivalent circuit models, frequency limitations, large-signal switching, basic single-stage amplifier configurations, basic logic inverter.

The JFET and the MOSFET, current-voltage relationship, small-signal equivalent circuit, basic configurations of single-stage amplifiers, the CMOS digital logic inverter.

Semiconductor power devices: pnpn diode, diac, thyristor, triac, IGBT.

Optical devices: optical absorption, light emitting diodes, laser diodes, photodetectors: photoconductor, photodiode, pin photodiode, avalanche photodiode, phototransistor, solar cells.

Nanoelectronics and nanotechnology: basic definitions, trends in the field of nanoelectronics, nanoconductors, transport properties of semiconductor nanostructures, nanodevices.

The subject is taught in programs

Electrical engineering 1st level

Objectives and competences

To comprehend structures, basic principles of operation and properties of semiconductor devices and present the main purposes of applications on examples of basic configurations. Knowledge of semiconductor devices is important for the understanding of the analog and digital electronics, power electronics, optoelectronics, photonics and emerging nanoelectronics.

Teaching and learning methods

The lectures provide a theoretical background on particular subjects, practical examples are presented at auditory practise. Practical work is being performed in the laboratory environment.

Expected study results

After successful completion of the course, students should be able to:

– explain the energy distribution and concentrations of free charges in intrinsic or doped semiconductors,

– describe the continuity of carrier concentrations and electrical currents in a semiconductor,

– explain physical phenomena in a pn-junction in thermal equilibrium and under external voltage,

– define the current-voltage and frequency constraints of diodes,

– explain the properties of a bipolar transistor in the various regimes of operation,

– evaluate the constraints in selecting a bipolar transistor for various applications,

– explain the operation and benefits of unipolar transistors,

– explain the operation and applications of power semiconductor devices,

– describe basic physical phenomena (absorption, spontaneous and stimulated emission) in photonic devices,

– defend nanoelectronics as a new developmental era of electronics.

Basic sources and literature

  1. Franc Smole, Polprevodniška elektronika, Založba FE in FRI, Ljubljana, 2017.
  2. Smole F., Topič M., Elementi polprevodniške elektronike, Založba FE in FRI, Ljubljana, 2014.
  3. Donald A. Neamen, Semiconductor Physics and Devices, University of New Mexico, McGraw-Hill, 2011.
  4. S. M. Sze, Semiconductor Devices, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2006.
  5. S. O. Kasap, Optoelectronics and Photonics, Prentice Hall, Inc., 2013.
  6. William A. Goddard, Donald W. Brenner, Sergey Edward Lyshevski, Gerald J. Iafrate, Nanoscience, Engineering, and Technology, CRC Press LLC, 2012.
  7. George W. Hanson, Fundamentals of  Nanoelectronics, Pearson Prentice Hall, 2008.

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