UE Solid state physics, magnetism and semiconductors

Degrees incorporating this pedagocial element :


The aim of this course is to present all the electronic and magnetic properties of solids. These concepts will be supplemented by the in-depth courses offered in Semester 2. 

  • Chapter I: Drude theory of metals. Electrical conductivity, Hall effect, thermal conductivity, Wiedemann-Franz law. 
  • Chapter II: Dielectric materials. Concepts of dielectric susceptibility. Polarisability, Clausius-Mossotti relation.
  • - Chapter III:  Crystal lattice and periodicity, phonons. Real and reciprocal lattices, Brillouin zones. Phonons, speed of sound.
  • Chapter IV: Optical properties of solids. Propagation, dielectric function. Plasma frequency and plasmon modes, reflectivity of metals. Ionic solids, LST relation, polaritons.
  • Chapter V: Quantum free electrons: Sommerfeld theory of metals. Fermi energy and density of states. Sommerfeld's development. Electrical and thermal conductivity. Effect of periodicity on the electronic structure: Bloch waves, Kronig-Penney model. Classification of solids (metals and insulators).
  • Chapter VI: Elements of classical magnetism. Magnetic dipole. M, B, H and A variables. Magnetic susceptibility, dia- and paramagnetism. Demagnetising field, thermodynamic aspects.
  • - Chapter VII: Quantum origin of magnetism.  Classical diamagnetism and paramagnetism, Bohr-Van Leeuwen theorem. Spin-orbit coupling, Zeeman effect. Hund's rules. Van-Vleck, Brillouin and Pauli paramagnetism. Landau and Larmor diamagnetism.
  • Chapter VIII: Magnetic ordering. Exchange interaction, Heisenberg Hamiltonian. Zoology of magnetic ordering. Ferromagnetism: Brillouin-Curie-Weiss theorem, Landau theory of ferromagnetic transition. Stoner model.
  • - Chapter IX: Semiconductors. Band structure, concept of holes, effective mass, equivalent density of states.  Counting of intrinsic carriers, doping, concept of compensation, Fermi level and neutrality equation.
  • Chapter X: Devices. Diffusion current, conduction. PN junction, heterostructures, LEDs. MOS technology and optical detectors.


Electromagnetism and Maxwell equations, thermodynamics, basic quantum mechanics concepts (Physics bachelor course - L3).


"Physique de l'état solide" par C.Kittel or "Physique des Solide" par N.Ashcroft et D.Mervin.