About the content
Very different from what is taught in standard courses, "Fundamentals of Current Flow" provides a unified conceptual framework for ballistic and diffusive transport of both electrons and phonons - essential information for understanding nanoelectronic devices.
The traditional description of electronic motion through a solid is based on diffusive transport, which means that the electron takes a random walk from the source to the drain of a transistor, for example. However, modern nanoelectronic devices often have channel lengths comparable to a mean free path so that electrons travel ballistically, or "like a bullet."
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Nanoscience and Technology MicroMasters ®
Fundamentals of Current Flow is one course in a growing suite of unique, 1-credit-hour short courses developed in an edX/Purdue University collaboration. Students may elect to pursue a verified certificate for this specific course alone or as one of the six courses needed for the edX/Purdue MicroMasters® program in Nanoscience and Technology.
For further information and other courses offered, see the Nanoscience and Technology MicroMasters® page. Courses like this can also apply toward a Purdue University MSECE degree for students accepted into the full master’s program.
- Ballistic and diffusive conductance
- Density of states
- Number of modes
- Landauer formula
Undergraduate degree in engineering or the physical sciences, knowledge of differential equations and linear algebra.
Week 1: The New Perspective
1.2 Two Key Concepts
1.3 Why Electrons Flow
1.4 Conductance Formula
1.5 Ballistic (B) Conductance
Week 2: The New Perspective (Continued)
1.6 Diffusive (D) Conductance
1.7 Connecting B to D
1.8 Angular Averaging
1.9 Drude Formula
1.10 Summing Up
Week 3: Energy Band Model
2.2. E(p) or E(k) Relation
2.3. Counting States
2.4. Density of States
2.5. Number of Modes
Week 4: Energy Band Model (Continued)
2.6. Electron Density (n)
2.7. Conductivity vs. n
2.8 - 2.9 Bonus Lectures; NOT covered on exams
2.10 Summing Up
Week 5: What and Where is the Voltage
3.2 A New Boundary Condition
3.3 Quasi-Fermi Levels (QFL's)
3.4 Current from QFL's
3.5 Landauer Formulas
3.6 - 3.10 Bonus Lectures; NOT covered on exams
Epilog: Looking Forward-From Semiclassical to Quantum; Bonus Lectures; NOT covered on exams
Text: S. Datta, "Lessons from Nanoelectronics", Part A: Basic Concepts,
World Scientific, Second Edition 2017
The manuscript will be available for download on the course's website.
Thomas Duncan Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, NAE member
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