Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 2 sessions / week, 1 hour / session

Recitations: 1 session / week, 1 hour / session

Course Description

Traditionally, progress in electronics has been driven by miniaturization. But as electronic devices approach the molecular scale, classical models for device behavior must be abandoned. To prepare for the next generation of electronic devices, this class teaches the theory of current, voltage and resistance from atoms up. To describe electrons at the nanoscale, we will begin with an introduction to the principles of quantum mechanics, including quantization, the wave-particle duality, wavefunctions and Schrödinger's equation. Then we will consider the electronic properties of molecules, carbon nanotubes and crystals, including energy band formation and the origin of metals, insulators and semiconductors. Electron conduction will be taught beginning with ballistic transport and concluding with a derivation of Ohm's law. We will then compare ballistic to bulk MOSFETs. The class will conclude with a discussion of possible fundamental limits to computation.


6.007 Electromagnetic Energy: From Motors to Lasers, or 6.003 Signals and Systems.

Course Requirements and Grading

6.701 (undergraduate) includes regular problem sets, a MATLAB®-based project, a midterm and a final.

In addition, 6.719 (graduate) requires completion of a project on analysis of a spin device and additional problem set, midterm and final questions.

Grade composition for 6.701:

Problem sets 20%
Midterm 20%
Final 45%
Simulation project 15%

Grade composition for 6.719:

Problem sets 10%
Midterm 15%
Final 35%
Simulation project 15%
Spin device report 25%


The course notes are available in the Readings section.