Cluster 10

Semiconductor Materials and Device Engineering

Michael Oye, PhD
UCSC Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Nobuhiko P. Kobayashi, PhD
UCSC Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Prerequisite: Chemistry and Introductory Physical Sciences or equivalent

Summary: In the past 50 years, semiconductors have changed our lives in a way that has never occurred before in human history. Every aspect of our modern lives involves semiconductors. This cluster will cover the basics of semiconductors, how to make semiconductors, and how basic semiconductor devices work. This cluster covers the device-level operation (i.e., LED, lasers, transistor, solar cell, memory device, etc.), so students interested in learning more about how semiconductors work and how to make them for useful engineering applications, will find this cluster interesting.

All students in this cluster will be enrolled in the following courses:

Fundamentals of Semiconductor Materials and Processing

Basic principles of semiconductor materials and its synthesis techniques will be covered, as well as standard device fabrication sequences necessary for functional engineering applications. Scientific principles, such as semiconductor bandgaps, electrical charge carriers, conductors and insulators will be covered, and how semiconductor processing techniques are used for manufacturing of these materials. These semiconductor materials are used in integrated circuit (i.e. computer chips) fabrication, as well as other engineering applications, such as DNA and biomolecular detection, chemical and biological sensing, battery technologies, display screens for TVs, and solar cells. After taking this course, students will also develop an appreciation of the complex engineering challenges necessary with semiconductor materials engineering for advanced device processing applications in the future.

Semiconductor Devices

Fundamental principles of semiconductors (such as silicon) and how they are applied toward engineering applications. The basic science and operation of semiconductor devices (such as transistors, solar cells, computer chips, memory devices, and LEDs) will be discussed. An overview of the basic solid state scientific principles and applications of pn junctions for semiconductor devices will be covered. In addition, the processes necessary for incorporating these different principles into a functioning device will be discussed, as well as current engineering challenges required for further device development. Upon completion of this course, students should be able to describe how different semiconductor devices vary in their operation, and how these differences can be utilized toward the engineering of functional semiconductor devices.