First cycle
degree courses
Second cycle
degree courses
Single cycle
degree courses
School of Engineering
Course unit
INP7080719, A.A. 2018/19

Information concerning the students who enrolled in A.Y. 2018/19

Information on the course unit
Degree course Second cycle degree in
IN2371, Degree course structure A.Y. 2017/18, A.Y. 2018/19
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Degree course track PHOTONICS [003PD]
Number of ECTS credits allocated 9.0
Type of assessment Mark
Department of reference Department of Information Engineering
Mandatory attendance No
Language of instruction English
Single Course unit The Course unit can be attended under the option Single Course unit attendance
Optional Course unit The Course unit can be chosen as Optional Course unit

Teacher in charge ENRICO ZANONI ING-INF/01

Course unit code Course unit name Teacher in charge Degree course code

ECTS: details
Type Scientific-Disciplinary Sector Credits allocated
Educational activities in elective or integrative disciplines ING-INF/01 Electronics 9.0

Course unit organization
Period First semester
Year 1st Year
Teaching method frontal

Type of hours Credits Teaching
Hours of
Individual study
Laboratory 1.0 8 17.0 2
Lecture 8.0 64 136.0 No turn

Start of activities 01/10/2018
End of activities 18/01/2019

Examination board
Examination board not defined

Prerequisites: Basic knowledge concerning laws of electromagnetism, optics, atomic physics. Basic knowledge concerning working principles of semiconductor devices
Target skills and knowledge: Knowledge: Properties of semiconductor materials. Silicon and compound semiconductor properties. Light absorption and generation mechanisms in semiconductors. Spontaneous and stimulated emission in semiconductors. Optoelectronic devices : Light Emitting Diodes, Lasers, photodetectors. Homojunction and heterojunction solar cells. Heterojunction electron devices: High Electron Mobility Transistors and their applications.
Skills: Ability to analyze the electrical and optical properties of electronic and optoelectronic devices and to define which characteristics are required for the various fields of application. Evaluation of the efficiency of LED devices and photovoltaic devices. Derivation of simple models of electrical and optical behavior of electronic and optoelectronic devices starting from a physical description of devices (geometries, composition, dopants, thickness of the epitaxial layers).
Examination methods: Mid-term and final tests during the course, including numerical problems and simple questions concerning operation of optoelectronic and electronic devices. After the end of the course, written tests with numerical problems and questions.
Assessment criteria: Knowledge on optoelectronic and electronic semiconductor device operation and device physics and on semiconductor material properties. Operation of heterojunctions, LED, lasers, HEMTs, photodetectors and solar cells. Students are asked to be able to solve simple problems concerning electronic and optoelectronic devices operating principles and their applications.
Course unit contents: Elementary quantum mechanics. Heterostructures. Anderson theory for band alignment. Band diagrams. Capacitance-voltage profiling. Quantum wells. Compound semiconductor devices, heterojunctions and their properties. Heterostructure Field Effect Transistors and their applications. Modulation doping and High Electron Mobility Transistors (HEMTs); applications to 5G telecommunication infrastructure and to power electronics. Optical properties of semiconductors. Radiative transitions, light absorption; rate equations. Non-radiative recombination, Auger recombination. Theory of radiative recombination in semiconductors. Light-emittin devices, Light Emitting Diodes (LED). Current-voltage LED characteristics. Non-ideality of I-V characteristics, parasitic resistances. Carrier loss and carrier overflow; electron blocking layers: case histories, efficiency droop. Dependence on temperature of electrical and optical characteristics. Internal and external quantum efficiency, extraction efficiency. High efficiency LEDs. Semiconductor lasers: conditions for laser oscillation, gain threshold voltage.
Mode propagation in the optical cavity. Laser diodes operating principles. Steady-state rate equations. Optical power vs current laser characteristics. Semiconductor lasers for optical fiber communications. Superluminescent diodes. Photodetectors: pin diodes, avalanche photodetectors (APD), Metal Semiconductor Metal detectors (MSM), fototransistors. Solar cells: structure, operating principles, deviations from ideality. Optimized structures for solar cells: multijunction cells, thin film photovoltaic devices. Solar concentration. Reliability in optoelectronics, assignment of master thesis topics.
Planned learning activities and teaching methods: Theory (48 hours), pen-and-paper analysis of application problems, experiments, as demonstrations in class and hands-on in the laboratory (24 hours). Seminars will be given by industrial and acdemeic researchers and technical personnel. Visit to Department research laboratories and overview of the research work developed at DEI with major electronic and optoelectronic semiconductor companies worldwide, with application to telecommunication, bioengineering, lighting. power electronics, automotive.
Additional notes about suggested reading: Lecture notes, powerpoint slides, solved problems and selected research papes are available on the course website
Textbooks (and optional supplementary readings)
  • Kasap, Safa O.; Sinha, Ravindra Kumar, Optoelectronics and photonics: principles and practices S. O. Kasap. Boston [etc.]: Pearson, 2013. Cerca nel catalogo
  • Schubert, E. Fred, Light-emitting diodes E. Fred Schubert. Cambridge: Cambridge University, 2006. Cerca nel catalogo

Innovative teaching methods: Teaching and learning strategies
  • Lecturing
  • Laboratory
  • Problem based learning
  • Working in group
  • Problem solving
  • Use of online videos

Innovative teaching methods: Software or applications used
  • Moodle (files, quizzes, workshops, ...)
  • Matlab

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
Quality Education Clean Water and Sanitation Affordable and Clean Energy Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure Sustainable Cities and Communities Climate Action