Solid state Engineering is a multi-disciplinary field that combines disciplines such as physics, chemistry, electrical engineering, materials science and mechanical engineering. It provides the means to understand matter and to design and control its properties.
The 20th century has witnessed the phenomenal rise of natural science and technology into all aspects of human life. Three major sciences have emerged and marked this century. Physical science which has strived to understand the structure of atoms through quantum mechanics, Life Sciences which has attempted to understand the structure of cells and the mechanisms of life through biology and genetics, and Information Sciences which has symbiotically developed the communicative and computational means to advanced natural science.
Microelectronics has become one of today's principle enabling technologies supporting these three major sciences and touches every aspect of human life: food, energy, transportation, communication, entertainment, health/medicine and exploration. For example, microelectronic devices have now become building blocks of systems which are used to monitor food s energy more efficiently (LED), control electrical vehicles (automobiles), transmit information (optical fiber and wireless communications), entertain (virtual reality, video games, computers), help cure or enhance the human body (artificial senses, optically activated medicine) and support the exploration of new realms (space, underwater).
A different approach has been envisioned for future advances in semiconductor science and technology in the 21st century. This will consist of reaching closer to the structure of atoms by employing nanoscale electronics. Indeed, the history of microelectronics has been, itself, characterized by a constant drive to imitate natural objects (e.g. the brain cell) and thus move towards lower dimensions in order to increase integration density, system functionality and performance (e.g. speed and power consumption).
Fundamentals of Solid State Engineering is structured in two major parts. It first addresses the basic physics concepts, which are at the base of solid state matter in general and semiconductors in particular. The second part reviews the technology for modern Solid State Engineering. This includes a review of compound semiconductor bulk and epitaxial thin films growth techniques, followed by a description of current semiconductor device processing and nano-fabrication technologies. A few examples of semiconductor devices and a description of their theory of operational are then discussed, including transistors, semiconductor lasers, and photodetectors.
Razeghi (Northwestern U.) presents this undergraduate textbook covering a variety of fundamental scientific concepts essential to solid state engineering and of interest to students in electrical engineering and materials science. The appendix and references will also be useful to graduate students and researchers. Coverage includes fundamental solid state physics, quantum mechanics, low dimensional structures, crystal growth, semiconductor device processing and technology, transistors and lasers. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)