Semiconductor physics is the branch of solid state physics that focuses on specific properties of semiconductors. It studies dynamics of different perturbations (mainly electrons and holes) in the semiconductor crystal and the ways to affect it.

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Activation energy as a function of defects

Electrical conductivity has a form of Arrhenius equation. It is assumed that activation energy decreases with defect density in the insulating state and becomes zero in the conducting state. Can one ...
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Factors on which barrier potential in a p n junction depends

I have a few queries regarding the barrier potential in a p-n junction diode. Is the barrier potential dependent on temperature? Why/why not? Does the barrier potential depend on doping ...
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How holes conduct current?

I had questions about holes in semiconductor, when i checked the net it is said holes are said to be equivalent positive charge and they say because the hole moves from one place to another when it is ...
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Transistor as Oscillator [migrated]

While I was studying the use of Transistor as an Oscillator from my Fundamentals Of Physics By Halliday, Resnick and Walker , I faced several confusions. My book says that when the switch S1 is ...
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Difference between equilibrium and steady state with example s

Difference between equilibrium and steady state with examples in case of charge carriers in semiconductors (difference) Reaching equilibrium or steady State
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What controls the on-off speed in a microprocessor? [closed]

I've been spending some time reading about semiconductors and even about computer architecture in order to understand how computers actually works in lowest levels, but until now nothing what I read ...
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How does the saturation current of a heterojunction depend on on the band gap difference?

In my textbook, they demonstrate that, for a regular n-Si/p-Si pn junction, the electron saturation current density (it's pretty much the same for the holes, but with hole properties instead of ...
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Why does the minority carrier drift current at PN junction remain constant when reverse biased?

I understand the source of this drift current is thermally excited electron hole pair minority carriers, and that minority carrier excitation is constant (and quite low) at constant temperature. ...
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28 views

why activation energy of semiconductor changes as temperature changes

why activation energy of semiconductor thin films changes as temperature changes. I know that this is due to different conduction mechanisms. Intrinsic conduction mechanism which occurs at high ...
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Question about electron-hole pair generation in depletion layer for a p-n junction photodiode

At the heart of operation of p-n (or p-i-n) junction photodiodes is the absorption of photons leading to generation of electron-hole pairs. If the diode is, e.g., reverse biased, then the motion of ...
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Such high mobility value for degrading structural properties

I have prepared Cu enriched ZnSe thin films with different concentrations of copper. The XRD and RAMAN results showed improvement in structural properties as the Cu content is increased up to 10%. ...
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Resistance of depletion region of PN Junction

It seems that in picture D, the Depletion region is gone because quantitatively we have V= Vj+RI where Vj is the opposite of the built in potential of the depletion region but R is the resistance of ...
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Resistance of depletion region

The ideal diode equation is : I=Io[exp(qv/kT)-1]. My question is when we want to represent this ideal diode, it will be represented by a resistance of depletion region right? but is this resistance ...
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What sort of math deals with thermodynamics inside of semiconductors?

That is to say, how would one consider the thermodynamics of a complex chip like a modern CPU? I hear that designing the thermal efficiency of such systems is very difficult. I'm not sure why, ...
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43 views

Electron-Hole Spin Exchange Interaction

I am stuck with this seemingly "simple" Hamiltonian. I am dealing with an exchange term of a Hamiltonian for two different spin species: $$H_\text{exchange} = - \lambda J \cdot S = ...
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31 views

Internal Resistor in a Diode

When we talk about the resistance of a diode (of the P and N region), is this resistance like the one inside an Electro-Motive Force or it acts like a normal resistor (external electric field exist)? ...
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Definition of a semiconductor

Originally I had learned that solids are split into two categories: isolators/semiconductors, and metals. The fundamental difference between the two is the existence of a bandgap. Metals don't have ...
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36 views

Diffusion current and resistance of a diode

In a diode, there is a resistance in the p and n region, and electric field is required to move the charges in forward bias conditions. My question is: when there is diffusion current is the electric ...
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29 views

What is the difference between the Franz-Keldysh effect and free carrier absorption?

What is the difference between the Franz-Keldysh effect and free carrier absorption? My first guess to this is that the Franz-Keldysh effect involves a bandgap potential of non-zero volts D.C. while ...
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Semiconductor intrinsic carrier concentration is given by ni=BT^(3/2)*exp(-E/2kT), how is this derived?

The glorious book Sedra/Smith Microelectronic Circuits states that for a semiconductor the intrinsic charge concentration is is given by: $$ n_i = BT^{3/2}e^{-E_g/2kT} $$ Where $n_i$ is the ...
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57 views

Does reverse biasing hold any meaning in case if both terminals are n type semiconductors?

When we talk about an n-p-n transistor in common emitter configuration, we often say that emitter-collector circuit (the one towards right) is reverse biased. In what sense it is reverse biased? Here, ...
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Don't electrons have discrete energy levels in semiconductors?

I am having a hard time understanding the relation between the fermi distribution of electrons in a semiconductor, and the fact the electron energy states are discrete. The fermi distribution is ...
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selection of p substrate as wafer in typical cmos process flow

why is p-substrate typically used as wafer in the typical cmos process flow? why not n substrate?with respect to memories, Has it got anything to do with the aplha-paritcle radiation induced errors ...
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Why can solar cells be made of indirect and direct semiconductors? (Comparison between some pn-junction devices)

Various textbooks mention, but not go into detail, how semiconductor devices are optimized for their particular function. E-k space is trascendental to understand this, given that it depends on the ...
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What is the effect of doping silicon with an excessive amount of group V donors?

What is actually the effect of doping silicon with an excessive amount of group V / donor atoms? I read it reduces the conductivity but I dont understand why.
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45 views

Can the Fermi level go above the conduction band energy if doped heavily enough?

So for n-type Si with donor density $N_d$ and donor energy level $E_d$, $N_d^+ = N_d(1+\frac{1}{1+e^{\beta (E_d - E_f)}/2})$ is the number of ionized donors, so we get an relation between the number ...
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Cryogenic Conductivity of a Defective Semiconductor

If I have a semiconductor with a lot of defects what happens to its conductivity at at mK type temperatures? I'm expecting that defects would give rise to greater conductivity than for a perfect ...
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44 views

How is periodic potential approximation justified in semiconductor physics?

In semiconductor physics the usual approximation is that of infinite crystal. This seems to allow one to write Hamiltonian for electron subsystem (in adiabatic approximation) as having periodic ...
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Literature on semiconductor modeling

Analysis and Simulation of Semiconductor Devices by Selberherr (Amazon link) seems to be the book on the basics of the craft, yet it was written in 1984. Are there any more recent books or have the ...
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51 views

Increasing the efficiency of photovoltaic power cells

Given that solar cells use one or more semiconductor materials to convert light to electricity, and that the efficiency of that conversion is dependent on the material and the wavelength of the light, ...
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Why are generally two of three effective masses identical?

In indirect semiconductors, the effective mass of electrons depend on the direction. There are three principle directions pointing away from the global energetic minimum in which the effective masses ...
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Confusion about depletion layer in pn-junction?

Here: external link Seek: around (2:53) Since n-type and more electrons than p-type and vice versa for holes, they diffuse and in the process neutralize in the central region. How is the ...
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18 views

Doped Semiconductor with Holes left?

This confuses me: In the wikipedia article it talks about how the Majority charge carrier is electronics for an N-type semiconductor how come the electrons in the conduction band don't just drop ...
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27 views

Resistance of a diode in different regime and the physics of recombination current

I would like to ask question about the resistance of a diode under different regime. Surely, in reverse bias, it has a breakdown voltage, and in forward bias,it rises exponentially according to the ...
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inability of indirect gap semiconductors to emit light efficiently

what is reason of inability of indirect gap semiconductors to emit light efficiently?
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Why organic materials' hole mobility is usually higher than electron mobility?

Most of OFETs, and in particular OTFTs, are p-type (p-channel devices), because the hole mobility is higher than the electron mobility in most organic materials (wikipedia). What is the reason for ...
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What does Fermi level in the band gap mean?

What does it mean that the Fermi level for some semiconductors lie in the band gap? Is Fermi level definition different from what is know as usual? We define the Fermi level as the highest level of ...
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Does doping silicon affect its coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE)?

Everywhere I have searched I always see the CTE of silicon listed as 2.6*10e-6 °C^-1. However, I have silicon that was phosphorus-doped to an ion concentration of of 2.41*10e11 atmos/cm^3, and I would ...
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Ohmic contacts in a diode (metal-semiconductor junction) - contact difference of potential $V_0$ - how to compute

I'm reading "Microelectronics" by Millman, Grabel. Premise: The book developed, for a pn step-graded junction, the contact potential as $$ V_0 = V_T \text{ln} \frac{p_{p0}}{p_{n0}} = - V_T ...
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Is the built-in potential in a PN junction the same as the “knee” or “turn-on” potential?

Considering a PN junction with a difference in fermi level between the P and N type regions given by eV0. Does this V0 correspond to the potential at which the diode "switches on"? My intuition tells ...
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How is the bandgap reference diode so accurate? (temperature changes bandgap?)

I am studying about bandgap references (wiki). As a black box approach, (from what I know) it can be seen as a system which gives a stable voltage reference irrespective of the highly varying ...
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Topology of a bit

From a math perspective, it seems obvious that the electric field (or voltage which ever) of a bit in a computer, when its in a stable 0, or 1 state, must have a singularity, a set of points where the ...
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What limits the doping concentration in a semiconductor?

Si and Ge can be blended in any ratio, $\mathrm{Si}_x\mathrm{Ge}_{1-x},\ 0\le x\le 1$. So do InxGa1-x. So what exactly causes doping impurities inside Si/Ge/etc. to saturate at $\sim 10^{-19}\ ...
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Can a strained diamond actually become conductive?

According to about.com, "The electrical resistivity of most diamonds is on the order of 1011 to 1018 Ω·m" (source) However, according to the diamond band diagram, it seems that under a certain ...
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Graded semiconductors - hole concentration function of x

I'm stuck at page 37 of the (second ed.) of "Microelectronics" by Millman & Grabel, section "1-7 Graded Semiconductors". Before that section, it spent some time explaining the phenomenon of ...
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Semiconductors and energy bands

The valence and conduction band of a semi-conductor are often drawn as here click. This plot has essentially two features and I would like to understand them. The peak and the valley of the two ...
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95 views

3D Density of states

I have the following dispersion relation: $$\epsilon(\vec{k})=\frac{\hbar}{2}\left(\frac{k_x^2}{m_1}+\frac{k_y^2}{m_2}-\frac{k_z^2}{m_3}\right)$$ (note the minus sign in the third term). And I am ...
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Periodic momentum space in band structure

I often see pictures like this in physics, this one for Silicon band structure. (source, NB: it's the German page for Silicon). There you see the plot of the energy in terms of the momentum $k$. ...
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Hole, solid state physics

In n-type semi conductor, when hole is created, which starts to move, but not in p-type semi conductor, hence, is a hole a static or dynamic? hole is absence on electron, absence means nothing, then, ...
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Exciton in semi-conductor

I don't understand why an exciton describes only the interaction between an electron hole and an electron in the conduction band? How is this interaction different from the interaction between an ...