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Chemistry 410: Physical Chemistry of the Solid State

Course Level: 
Fourth Year
Academic Year: 


Electromagnetic, optical, thermal and mechanical properties, and chemical reactivity of solids;electrons in periodic systems: bands, zones; excitations: excitons, phonons, plasmons, polaritons; crystalline order and disorder; ionic conductivity. Credit will be granted for only one of CHEM 410 or CHEM 502. [3-0-0]

Prerequisite: One of CHEM 304, PHYS 203 and one of CHEM 312, PHYS 304.

General Outline

  1. Basic crystal structures
  2. Quantum Theory of the Solid State
    1. Review of Quantum Mechanics
    2. Free electron Fermi gas
    3. Review of Statistical Mechanics
    4. Energy bands
  3. Semiconductors
    1. Conductivity and Devices
    2. Semiconductor processing
  4. Superconductors
  5. Electromagnetic Properties of Solids
    1. Optical properties of Solids
    2. Dielectric properties
    3. Magnetic Properties
    4. Piezoelectrics, Thermoelectrics
  6. ​Defects in Solids
    1. Nomenclature and basic properties
    2. Ionic conductivity in solid
    3. Solid electrolytes
  7. solid state ionic devices: batteries, fuel cells
    1. Color centers
    2. Hardness of materials, Mechanical properties
  8. Thermodynamics of Solids
    1. Entropy and the crystalline state
    2. Specific heat of solids
    3. Free energy and thermodynamic stability of solids
    4. Solid Solutions
    5. Crystallographic (solid-solid) phase transitions
    6. Two component phase diagrams and Gibbs' Phase Rule
    7. Three component phase diagrams
  9. Surface catalysis
    1. surface structures, surface crystallography, surface termination, reconstruction
    2. reaction selectivity
    3. reactivity of defects
    4. surface analytical tools: Auger, LEED, X-ray