Please note: there may be some adjustments to the teaching arrangements published in the course catalogue for 2020-21. Given current circumstances related to the Covid-19 pandemic it is anticipated that some usual arrangements for teaching on campus will be modified to ensure the safety and wellbeing of students and staff on campus; further adjustments may also be necessary, or beneficial, during the course of the academic year as national requirements relating to management of the pandemic are revised.

Electronic Devices 3 ENG3025

  • Academic Session: 2021-22
  • School: School of Engineering
  • Credits: 10
  • Level: Level 3 (SCQF level 9)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes
  • Available to Erasmus Students: Yes

Short Description

The conduction and valence bands in semiconductors and the equations governing the flow of charges in various semiconductors, mainly Silicon. The formation of p-n junctions and the operation of transistors, their current voltage characteristics and their equivalent circuit models will be presented in detail. The course will also discuss the operation mechanisms and fundamental properties/parameters of the metal-oxide-semiconductor Field Effect Transistor (MOSFET).


2 lectures per week

Requirements of Entry

Mandatory Entry Requirements


Recommended Entry Requirements


Excluded Courses





80% Examination

20% Laboratory Report

Main Assessment In: December

Course Aims

The course intends to:

■ establish the links between the crystal structure, the chemical composition and the electronic and transport properties of semiconductors like Si, Ge and GaAs, which are extremely important for the working of all the electronic devices (diodes, bipolar transistors, and field effect transistors)

■ establish the links between the electronic properties of bulk semiconductors and the electrical behaviour of p-n junctions, MOS structures, Schottky and Ohmic contacts as basic building blocks of all semiconductor devices including diodes, bipolar and MOS transistors, photodiodes and lasers;

■ establish the links between the physical properties of p-n junctions and MOS structure used as building blocks of a MOS transistor and the electrical behaviour and the current voltage characteristics of the MOS transistors;

■ introduce the basic processes used in the fabrication of semiconductor devices and integrated circuits;

■ provide first-hand experience within a clean room environment and different technology processes and procedures involved in the fabrication of a semiconductor devices.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ list the differences between metals, semiconductors and insulators, and calculate the carrier concentration and generation/recombination in semiconductors;

■ recognise typical semiconductor terminology (including bands, effective density of states, Fermi levels, generation/recombination, carrier lifetime, majority/minority carriers);

■ draw band diagrams for intrinsic and doped semiconductors;

■ explain current flow in semiconductors with respect to drift and diffusion of electrons and holes;

■ compute majority and minority carrier concentrations, conductivity, mobility, diffusion coefficient, and current density from fundamental material properties of bulk semiconductors;

■ draw band diagrams of p-n junctions, Schottky barriers Ohmic contacts MOS structures,;

■ explain the physical properties of semiconductor junctions and identify how those properties give rise to device I-V and C-V characteristics;

■ calculate the depletion depths, fields, built-in potentials, I-V and C-V characteristics of p-n junctions, MOS structures, Schottky barriers and Ohmic contacts (where appropriate);

■ derive simple analytical models for MOS I-V characteristics in linear and saturation regimes;

■ describe the scaling principles of MOSFET;

■ design MOS transistors to a specification of desired properties;

■ summarise the physics and chemistry involved in basic semiconductor fabrication processes including lithography, diffusion, implantation oxidation and deposition of metals, dielectric layers and semiconductor layers;

■ identify the typical equipment used in the lithography, diffusion, implantation oxidation and deposition of metal, dielectric and semiconductor layers;

■ describe the planar fabrication processes (including the sequence of fundamental fabrication steps) for silicon MOS transistors and CMOS circuits;

■ calculate layer thicknesses from oxidation processes (both dry and wet);

■ calculate diffused and implanted dopant distributions, junctions depths and effective layer thicknesses resulting from diffusion, predeposition and drive-in processes;

■ fabricate silicon p-n junctions, including oxidation, impurity diffusion, photoresist spinning, masking and photolithography, and contacts;

■ measure and analyse their I-V and C-V characteristics.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must attend the degree examination and submit at least 75% by weight of the other components of the course's summative assessment.


Students must attend the timetabled laboratory classes.


Students should attend at least 75% of the timetabled classes of the course.


Note that these are minimum requirements: good students will achieve far higher participation/submission rates.  Any student who misses an assessment or a significant number of classes because of illness or other good cause should report this by completing a MyCampus absence report.