A single crystal of silicon (left, the silvery 'nose-cose' shaped object) and single crystal of silicon dioxide quartz (right, the transparent bar). Also shown in the case is a silicon solar cell (far left). The technologies that are based on these two single crystal materials include microelectronic chips, high-quality clocks, and cell-phones. The list suggests the impact that solid-state technologies have had on all of us. The display is in the Museum für Naturkunde Berlin, Deutschland.

Week 17

Guidance on your paper: Rubric and comments
Finals week. Papers are due Wednesday at 6PM

Reading: Time to start enjoying the summer break. I hope you choose some good reading!

Homework: NO HOMEWORK ASSIGNMENT. Concentrate on your Final Project paper.

Week 16

Guidance on your paper: Rubric and comments
Magnetism! This week we study magnetic materials, magnetic interactions in solids, and the Curie-Weiss mean-field theory of magnetic phase transitions. This mean-field treatment is an approach to discussing many different phase transitions.

Follow the Project Third Step instructions to produce your paper outline and state one more calculation/homework problem that you'd like to see solved as part of understanding your Project topic.

Reading: Read Simon's Chaptesr 19 through 23. These are short and interesting.

Homework: NO HOMEWORK ASSIGNMENT. Concentrate on your Final Project outline and self-assigned problem.
HWK sessions are Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room, and Tuesday 4-5P in Duane G2B-47

Week 15

Semiconductors! This week we will concentrate on materials like silicon and germanium, both pure and with specific impurities (dopants) and how semiconductor devices use p-n junctions.

Follow the Project Second Step instructions to get two more references, electronic energy levels, and your first homework assignment for understanding the Project electronic system.

Reading: Read Simon's Chaptesr 17 and 18.

Homework: HWK 12 is due Thursday April 23 at 6PM.
HWK sessions are Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room, and Tuesday 4-5P in Duane G2B-47

Week 14

We now have an approximate understanding of the free electron bands, nearly free electron bands (where the degeneracies in the free electron bands are lifted by the periodic potential), and tight-binding bands. Now we can start investigating the different types of solid-state materials you get (Metals, Insulators, Semiconductors, and more) when you fill these energy levels with electrons.

Reading: Read Simon's Chaptesr 16 and 17.

Homework: HWK 11 is due Thursday April 16 at 6PM.
HWK sessions are Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room, and Tuesday 4-5P in Duane G2B-47

Week 13

This week we will study the free electron model of energy bands in solids. Please start thinking about Final Project topics. Follow the Project Proposal instructions and send a short proposal by Friday.

Reading: Read Simon's Chaptesr 15 and 16.

Homework: HWK 10 is due Thursday April 9 at 6PM.
HWK sessions are Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room, and Tuesday 4-5P in Duane G2B-47

Week 12

Welcome back from SPRING BREAK. This week we will finish x-ray diffraction and start dealing with the properties of electrons in periodic potentials.

Reading: Read Simon's Chaptesr 15 and 16.

Homework: HWK 9 is due Thursday April 2 at 6PM.
HWK sessions are Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room, and Tuesday 4-5P in Duane G2B-47

Week 11

Hope you are enjoying your SPRING BREAK.

Reading: Read Simon's Chaptesr 14 and 15.

Homework: HWK 9 is due Thursday April 2 at 6PM.
HWK sessions are Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room, and Tuesday 4-5P in Duane G2B-47

Week 10

3-dimensional periodic solids, their structure, the associated 'Reciprocal Space', and a beginning discussion of diffraction probes such as x-ray and neutron diffraciton are the topics this week.

Reading: Read Simon's Chaptesr 13 and 14.

Homework: HWK 8 is due Wednesday March 18 at 6PM.
HWK sessions are Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room, and Tuesday 4-5P in Duane G2B-47

Week 9

This week we continue the study of 1-dimensional models of periodic solid materials, taking up the question of the electronic energy levels for 1-dimensional solids. We then move on to describing 3-dimensional solids.

Reading: Read Simon's Chaptesr 11 and 12.

Homework: HWK 7 is due Thursday March 12 at 6PM.
HWK sessions are Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room, and Tuesday 4-5P in Duane G2B-47

Week 8

This week we continue the study of 1-dimensional models of periodic solid materials, with emphasis on the 1-d mass-spring systems that have more than one atom in each unit cell. We will start studying the electronic band structure of 1-d periodic models by the end of the week.

Exam 1 solutions are on D2L. Exam scores are uploaded to D2L.
Exam average: 80 +/- 12 points of 100 total. GOOD JOB!!

Reading: Read Simon's Chaptesr 10 and 11.

Homework: HWK 6 is due Thursday March 6 at 6PM.
HWK sessions are Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room, and Tuesday 4-5P in Duane G2B-47

Week 7

We are starting to treat real solids by considering first the vibrations of mass/spring systems, where the masses are on a periodic spacing, but in 1-dimension. These problems are covered in Simon Chapters 8, 9, and 10. These chapters are short and punchy.

MID-TERM Exam. This week, Thursday Feb. 26, 7:30-9PM in Duane G2B47.

Reading: Read Simon's Chaptesr 8, 9, and 10.

Homework: HWK 6 is due Thursday March 6 at 6PM.
Study sessions are Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room, and Tuesday 4-5P in Duane G2B-47

Week 6

This week, we discuss atomic and molecular models as covered in Simon Chapters 5, 6, and 7. These chapters are qualitative, but provide lots of useful background on how to understand electronic systems. Please start reading them

MID-TERM Exam. Next week, Thursday Feb. 26, 7:30-9PM in Duane G2B47.

Reading: Read Simon's Chaptesr 5, 6, and 7.

Homework:HWK 5 is due on Wednesday Feb. 18 at 6PM. No HWK next week (Exam 1)
Homework sessions are Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room, and Tuesday 4-5P in Duane G2B-47

Week 5

Continuing this week with the Sommerfeld Model for metals. Soon, we'll be headed into atomic and molecular models as covered in Simon Chapters 5, 6, and 7. These chapters are qualitative, but provide lots of useful background on how to understand electronic systems. Please start reading them

Reading: Read Simon's Chaptesr 5, 6, and 7.

Homework:HWK 5 is due on Wednesday Feb. 18 at 6PM.
HWK 4 is due on Wednesday Feb. 5 at 6PM.
Homework sessions are Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room, and Tuesday 4-5P in Duane G2B-47

Week 4

We now start thinking about the electronic properties of solids. Lectures will cover the Drude theory of free electrons and the improved Sommerfeld theory that includes quantum statistics due to the Pauli exclusion principle.

Reading: Read Simon's Chapter 3 and Chapter 4.

Homework: HWK 3 is due on Thursday Feb. 5 at 6PM. For the specific heat of insulating materials, I have provided the specific heat of diamond (in calories/(mole K)) from J. Chem. Phys vol. 6, page 68 (1938) and J. Chem. Phys. vol. 36, page 1903 (1962), and the specific heat of silicon (in Joules/(mole K)) from the Journal of Physical Chemistry Reference Data, vol. 15, page 967 (1986). Both data sets are provided as comma separated variables files that list the temperature in degrees Kelvin in the first column and the specific heat values in the second column.
Homework sessions are Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room, and Tuesday 4-5P in Duane G2B-47

Week 3

This week we continue with Peter Debye's model for the specific heat of solids and will then continue with the Drude and Sommerfeld models for the electronic properties of metals. You should be finished reading Chapter 2 and start reading Chapter 3 of Simon.


Reading: Read Simon's Chapter 2 and Chapter 3.

Homework: HWK 2 is due on Wednesday Jan. 28 at 6PM. See this Useful plotting and fitting Mathematica notebook.
Homework sessions are Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room, and Tuesday 4-5P in Duane G2B-47

Week 2

REMINDER: No Monday classes due to MLK Jr. day. Enjoy the break!

Lectures this week start Wed. and continue with the mass-spring model of solids, in particular the Boltzmann classical calculation, and the Einstein and Debye quantum models for heat capacity of solids. Perhaps remind yourselves a bit about calculating thermal properties of materials.


Reading: Read Simon's Chapter 2 and Chapter 3.

Homework: HWK 1 is due on Friday Jan. 23 at 6PM.
Homework sessions are planned for Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room. Also on Tuesday 4-5P in Duane G2B-47

Week 1

Welcome to Physics 4340, Introduction to Solid State Physics.

Lectures this week will cover a broad overview of the type of properties we will study and how we will approach using quantum mechanics and statistical mechanics to understand the behavior of solids. We will then start dicussing the Einstein and Debye models for heat capacity of solids.


Reading: Read Simons Chapter 2. Browse Chapters 1-4.

Homework: None assigned yet.
Homework sessions are planned for Mondays 3-5PM in Duane 11th floor Reading Room. Also on Tuesday 4-5P perhaps in Duane G2B-47

Welcome to Physics 4340!

First lecture is Monday, Jan. 12, 10:00A-10:50P, in room Duane G2B47.

Have a look at the course syllabus

Summary of things to do during or by the first week:
Buy the text (Steven Simon's "The Oxford Solid State Basics". Ashcroft and Mermin's Solid State Theory is also available as an optional book.).
Buy a clicker if you don't have one. Then follow these instructions to register.

Reading: Read Simons Chapter 1. Browse Chapters 1-4.

Homework: None assigned yet.
Homework sessions are planned for Mondays 4-6PM in Duane G2B-47.