Fundamentals of Nanotransistors

By Mark Lundstrom

Electrical and Computer Engineering, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN



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Fundamentals of Nanotransistors The transistor is the key enabler of modern electronics. Progress in transistor scaling has pushed channel lengths to the nanometer regime where traditional approaches to device physics are less and less suitable. These lecture notes describe a way of understanding MOSFETs and other transistors that is much more suitable than traditional approaches when the critical dimensions are measured in nanometers. A novel, “bottom-up approach” that agrees with traditional methods when devices are large, but that also works for nano-devices is used. Surprisingly, the final result looks much like the traditional, textbook, transistor models, but the parameters in the equations have simple, clear interpretations at the nanoscale.

The objective of these lectures is to provide readers with an understanding of the essential physics of nanoscale transistors as well as some of the practical technological considerations and fundamental limits. This book is written in a way that is broadly accessible to students with only a very basic knowledge of semiconductor physics and electronic circuits.

The corresponding online course for this text can be found at Fundamentals of Nanotransistors, 2nd Edition.

This is a draft copy of a set of lecture notes published by World Scientific and distributed with their permission. Copyright World Scientific Publishing Company, 2018.

Volumes in this series are available from World Scientific Publishing Company


Mark Lundstrom Mark Lundstrom is the Don and Carol Scifres Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Purdue University. He was the founding director of the Network for Computational Nanotechnology, which created Lundstrom earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Minnesota in 1973 and 1974, respectively and joined the Purdue faculty upon completing his doctorate on the West Lafayette campus in 1980. Before attending Purdue, he worked at Hewlett-Packard Corporation on MOS process development and manufacturing. His research at Purdue has focused on understanding electronic and thermal transport and how it plays out in semiconductor devices such as solar cells, lasers, thermoelectric devices, and bipolar, MOS, and heterostructure transistors. The development of new modeling and simulation techniques has also been part of this research. Lundstrom is a life fellow the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) and a fellow of the American Physical Society (APS), and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). He has received several awards for his contributions to research and education and is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Engineering.

Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  • Lundstrom, Mark S. Fundamentals of Nanotransistors. (Lessons from Nanoscience: A Lecture Notes Series: Vol. 6). World Scientific Publishing Company, 2017.


  • Mark Lundstrom (2022), "Fundamentals of Nanotransistors,"

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