Science & Technology

UM-StL Physics 381, 400 & 490 - Fall '96

Directed readings (p381), special problems (p400), and research (p490) in the science, techniques, & strategies of characterization, processing, survival, & growth in the sub-micron worlds of electronic material. In these worlds, gravity and even inertia sometime seem negligible, while electronic interactions enthusiastically display their underlying quantum nature. This course consists of an evolving mix of topics, technical and non-technical, of potential importance to science students & researchers, as well as to silicon-river manufacturing team members.

Special feature: This is a web-based theme course which we will try with help of regional talent and resources to keep running year round. The graded elements of the course are implemented via e-mail, allowing partcipation anywhere on the planet! An optional component includes weekly discussions and field trips, some (not all) of which may be implemented on the web for non-local participants as well. One might almost think of it as a weekly celebration, with regional guidance, of otherwise non-curriculum topics of potential value to science graduates and electronics-industry workers. The course now has a university-wizarded webpage and discussion area. Participating experts and registered students should ask the instructor for the discussion password, if they don't have it.

Questions this course might help you answer...

  • Who said the "goal of education is .. people .. doing new things, not simply repeating..."?
  • Is it possible to grow a 100 kg dislocation free crystal on earth?
  • How to cut a 50-atom thick slice of undamaged steel from the lunar-rover's axle?
  • Where can I find out the major element abundances in a zeptoliter of material?
  • How can momentum-selected imaging with fast electrons "light up" defects in a solid?
  • What are some useful ways to scatter light in modern industrial research?
  • How are astronomer's Lyman alpha, and microscopist's Cu K-beta, lines related?
  • Where and how might statistical process control charts make a difference?
  • How can defects in silicon 20 nm in size be counted with beams of 2-micron light?
  • What is revealed by the legs of a bend-extinction-contour spider?
  • How do I find isotopic ratios for the trace elements of a pico-gram sized particle?
  • What is the line of hemispheres, and in the 10nm size-range how far below it can we get?
  • How many acres of silicon wafer will be needed by industry in the year 2000?
  • "Roads" that glow, in the momentum space of a reciprocal lattice, converge where?
  • What team skills will help put a management-by-results system to work FOR YOU?
  • When to correct IR measurements of interstitial O in Si for surface effects?
  • How can I do spectroscopy with a Michaelson interferometer and a microphone?
  • What wierd things happen to oxygen in silicon at 450 degrees C, and why care?
  • How to get a 3D touchmap of the tip used for some atomic force microscope images?

    Other resources of possible interest:
  • Browser-interactive solver for constant acceleration problems.
  • A question involving relativistic acceleration which contains what you need to solve it.
  • Try focussing a high-res electron microscope image on-line!
  • Does making a hotdog require 50 nanoseconds or more of life's power stream?
  • Is statistical physics a dead subject, or is there another paradigm change afoot?
  • In preparation: assignment list, example tests, course calendar, homework/exam solutions...
  • What other resources might help you? E-mail suggestions to
  • At UM-StLouis see also: a1toc, cme, i-fzx, phys&astr, programs, stei-lab, & wuzzlers.
  • Some current and previous courses: p111, p112, p231, p341, p400.
  • Cite/Link:
  • This release dated 22 Sep 1996 (Copyright by Phil Fraundorf 1988-1996)

    Assumed Background:

  • Consent of instructor
  • For p400 and p490 credit, approval of the department chair.
  • Note: This course is in a prototyping stage during Fall Semester 1996. Interest by all potential participants and contributors is welcome. We will allow a wide range of backgrounds into the class initially, reminescent of the "one-room schools" of old, until either enrollment or our teaching mandate requires specialization. Hence the focus may be on subjects which can be taught on more than one level at once. Also as with one-room schools, popular subjects may be re-visited the same time each year. What topics would you like to celebrate? Please contact the course organizer (below) concerning your interests and ideas.


    Organizing Prof: Phil Fraundorf 516-5044; Benton Hall 421 (office)
    Guest Instructor(s): When appropriate, separate weekly units will be handled by guest experts.
    Office Hours: by appointment.
    Text: None so far.
    Assignment Schedule (e-mail): Receipt - 5pm Fri; Hand In - 5pm Thu.
    Group-Question Cycle (e-mail): Ask - 5pm Sun; Answer - 5pm Tue.
    Optional Discussions & Field Trips: F 8-9am, unless otherwise scheduled

    Approximate Distribution for Grade:

  • Collected HomeWork / Quizzes - 100%

    Some Suggested Supplementary Reading

    on subjects considered in this course...
  • Books by Hirsch et al., Spence, Reimer, Egerton, and Williams/Carter on Electron Microscopy.
  • Fumio Shimura, Semiconductor Silicon Crystal Technology (Academic Press, 1989)
  • E. F. Taylor & R. C. Smith, Teaching Physics On-Line (NTEN, Montana, 1995)
  • John Russ's Web Book on Materials Science.
  • and others not yet listed.

    on stuff of more general interest...

  • Galileo Galilei - Dialog Concerning the Two Chief World Systems (1632, translated by Stillman Drake, UC Press, 1962)
  • Thomas Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, 2nd edition (U. of Chicago Press, Chicago IL, 1970)
  • Jearl Walker - The Flying Circus of Physics (Wiley 1977)
  • Joel A. Barker, The Business of Paradigms (ILI Press, Lake Elmo MN, 1985)
  • R. P. Feynman - "Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!" (Bantam 1986)
  • George Arfken, Mathematical Methods for Physicists (Academic Press, 1970 & later)
  • K. Eric Drexler, Engines of Creation (Anchor Doubleday, New York NY, 1986)

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