Module code: EEEM022

Module Overview

Expected prior/parallel learning:  Students should have an interest in materials and devices; it would be of benefit to have studied EEE3037 Nanoscience and Nanotechnology.

Module purpose:  Nanoelectronics represent the ultimate in advanced electronic device design and operation. At the nanoscale the quantum nature of matter is evident in the operation of faster, energy efficient devices with greater functionality. New materials such as graphene and new molecular electronic materials offer unique electronic properties continually emerge in parallel to advances in device architecture and performance. This module will introduce some of the key concepts in low dimensional mesoscopic science and engineering and molecular electronics.  It will build from fundamental considerations of bonding in materials, through metals, semiconductors and insulators and molecules to the latest in materials and nanodevices

Module provider

Computer Science and Electronic Eng

Module Leader

CAREY David (Elec Elec En)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 86

Lecture Hours: 11

Tutorial Hours: 11

Guided Learning: 10

Captured Content: 32

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative content includes the following.

1. Electronic Materials: Bonding and structure of molecules and metals, semiconductor, insulators, graphene. Simple band structure important materials. Drude’s description of transport. Dispersion relations.

2. Statistics in electron systems: Fermi-Dirac and Maxwell-Boltzmann Statistics; degenerate and non-degenerate systems, Densities of states.

3. 2D Materials and Devices: Graphene and graphene nanoelectronics.

4. What limits current in a nanoscale device? Mesoscopic science, Landauer formulism, quantised conductance, ballistic and diffusive conduction, mean free path, and the transmission coefficient.

5. Quantum tunnelling devices: Double barrier structure and resonant tunnelling. Negative differential resistance based devices and figures of merit.

6. Molecular materials for thin film devices: common electronic molecules and their properties and thin films deposition techniques and morphology

7. Characterisation of organic materials and their electronic properties: surface and bulk characterisation techniques and chemical composition and structure analysis in relation to electronic properties

8. Electronic properties of molecular/polymer thin films: effects of morphology and charge transport mechanisms, experimental methods for measuring charge mobility and organic field–effect transistors

9. Bulk organic and polymer devices: charge injection, Fermi level alignment, and heterojunctions, Organic Light Emitting Diodes (OLEDs) and lasers, FETs, e-paper, OPV devices

10. Challenges for molecular electronics


Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework ASSIGNMENT 20

Alternative Assessment

Not applicable: students failing a unit of assessment resit the assessment in its original format.

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy for this module is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate the learning outcomes.

The 4 hour open book examination will assess knowledge of fundamental material properties and their behaviour in electric fields; allow the student to demonstrate an ability to perform numerical calculations of key material and device parameters. The assignment will assess the student’s ability to research into modern electronic devices and their potential applications.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of the following:

• A 4 hour open book written examination

• A written assignment covering aspects associated with modern nanoelectronic devices and calculation of advanced device parameters.  

Formative assessment and feedback
For the module, students will receive formative assessment/feedback in the following ways.

  • During lectures via questions and answers

  • During tutorial problem classes

  • By means of unassessed tutorial problem sheets (with answers/model solutions)

  • Via assessed coursework

Module aims

  • This module aims to equip students with an understanding of the science and engineering considerations for the exploration of new and existing materials for advanced nanoelectronic devices. In addition it will show how it is possible to engineer the structure of future devices to achieve desired electrical performance characteristics.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
1 Explain the origin and common properties of electronic materials including molecules, and in bulk and reduced dimensions. KC
2 Compare the factors that influence common electrical material properties. KT
3 Relate the device architecture to the electrical current-voltage characteristics of the device. CP
4 Calculate the key device performance parameters, such as carrier concentration, for different materials and device geometries. KC

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to achieve the following aims.

1. Through the introduction of the key concepts, representative examples and in-class calculations, the students will be able to relate the structure of materials to their electronic and magnetic properties.

2. Through the introduction, discussion and study of different device geometries, students will be able to examine and calculate the key performance parameters in a range of devices.

3. Through a series of in-class formative tests, students will be able to readily judge their own progress in identify any gaps in their knowledge.

Learning and teaching methods include the following.

• Lectures and class discussions
• Formative feedback sessions
• Revision sessions

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: EEEM022

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Electronic Engineering with Nanotechnology MEng 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Electronic Engineering MSc 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Electronic Engineering MEng 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Electronic Engineering with Professional Postgraduate Year MSc 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Electrical and Electronic Engineering MEng 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Nanotechnology and Renewable Energy MSc 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
RF and Microwave Engineering MSc 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2021/2 academic year.