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On June 30, 1948, AT&T Bell Labs unveiled the transitor to the world, creating a spark of explosive economic growth that would lead into the Information Age. William Shockley led a team of researchers, including Walter Brattain and John Bardeen, who invented the device. Like the existing triode vacuum tube device, the transistor could amplify signals and switch currents on and off, but the transistor was smaller, cheaper, and more efficient. Moreover, it could be integrated with millions of other transistors onto a single chip, creating the integrated circuit at the heart of modern computers.
Today, most transistors are being manufactured with a minimum feature size of 60-90nm--roughly 200-300 atoms. As the push continues to make devices even smaller, researchers must account for quantum mechanical effects in the device behavior. With fewer and fewer atoms, the positions of impurities and other irregularities begin to matter, and device reliability becomes an issue. So rather than shrink existing devices, many researchers are working on entirely new devices, based on carbon nanotubes, spintronics,
molecular conduction, and other nanotechnologies.
Learn more about transistors from the many resources on this site, listed below. Use our simulation tools to simulate performance characteristics for your own devices.
ECE 606 Lecture 34: MOSCAP Frequency Response
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16 Apr 2009 | | Contributor(s):: Muhammad A. Alam
ECE 606 Lecture 35: MOSFET I-V Characteristics I
ECE 606 Lecture 30: Heterojunction Bipolar Transistors I
04 Apr 2009 | | Contributor(s):: Muhammad A. Alam
ECE 606 Lecture 31: Heterojunction Bipolar Transistors II
ECE 606 Lecture 29: BJT Design II
31 Mar 2009 | | Contributor(s):: Muhammad A. Alam
ECE 606 Lecture 19: Numerical Solution of Transport Equation
29 Mar 2009 | | Contributor(s):: Muhammad A. Alam
Outline:Basic Transport Equations Gridding and finite differencesDiscretizing equations and boundary conditions Conclusion
ECE 606 Lecture 28: BJT Design I
ECE 606 Lecture 27: Introduction to Bipolar Transistors
ECE 606 Lecture 25: Schottky Diode I
24 Mar 2009 | | Contributor(s):: Muhammad A. Alam
ECE 606 Lecture 18: Continuity Equations
OutlineContinuity EquationExample problems Conclusion
ECE 606 Lecture 24: Large Signal Response
13 Mar 2009 | | Contributor(s):: Muhammad A. Alam
ECE 606 Lecture 23: AC Response
ECE 606 Lecture 20: Electrostatics of P-N Junction Diodes
11 Mar 2009 | | Contributor(s):: Muhammad A. Alam
ECE 606 Lecture 21: P-N Diode I-V Characteristics
ECE 606 Lecture 22: Non-ideal Effects
ECE 606 Lecture 17: Hall Effect, Diffusion
24 Feb 2009 | | Contributor(s):: Muhammad A. Alam
Outline:Measurement of mobilityHall Effect for determining carrier concentrationPhysics of diffusionConclusions
ECE 606 Lecture 16: Carrier Transport
23 Feb 2009 | | Contributor(s):: Muhammad A. Alam
ECE 606 Lecture 13: Recombination-Generation
16 Feb 2009 | | Contributor(s):: Muhammad A. Alam
Outline:Non-equilibrium systemsRecombination generation eventsSteady-state and transient responseDerivation of R-G formulaConclusion
ECE 606 Lecture 12: Equilibrium Concentrations
Outline:Carrier concentrationTemperature dependence of carrier concentrationMultiple doping, co-doping, and heavy-dopingConclusion
ECE 606 Lecture 11: Equilibrium Statistics
Outline:Law of mass-action & intrinsic concentration Statistics of donors and acceptor levelsConclusion