Spring 2023        ECE 685:  Nanoelectronics

Time and location:  Tuesday 4:30 pm – 7:10 pm, Planetary Hall 126

Instructor:  Qiliang Li, Engineering Bldg, Room 3250, Tel 703-993-1596, Email:

Office Hours:  Tuesday 2:20pm – 4:20pm; other times by appointment. 


 syllabus pdf



This course focuses on the fundamental concepts and principles of nanoelectronic materials and devices. Nanoelectronics is concerned with electronic devices with one or more dimensions at nanoscale. The lecture will cover the electronic properties of solids including semiconductors in samples of physical dimension of ~100 nm or less, and the corresponding basic device building blocks such as quantum dot (QD), single electron transistor (SET), nanowire, carbon nanotube (CNT), graphene, etc. The course will consider the design and analysis of a variety of nanoscale devices ("quantum" or "mesoscopic" devices) and examine the most notable, novel applications.

Prerequisites: ECE 584 "Semiconductor Device Fundamentals" or equivalent courses


Required Textbook: "Fundamentals of Nanoelectronics" by George W. Hanson, Pearson/Prentice Hall (2008), ISBN 978-0131957084. 



1.      "Mesoscopic Electronics in Solid State Nanostructures" by Thomas Heinzel.

2.      "Nanoelectronics and Information Technology", 2nd Ed. by Rainer Waser (Ed.)

3.      "Semiconductor Physical Electronics" by S. Li, Springer, ISBN 978-0387288932



1.      Course and Syllabus Overview

2.      Classical particles, classical waves, and quantum particles

3.      Quantum Mechanics of Electrons

4.      Confined Electrons / Electrons Subject to a Periodic Potential

5.      Tunnel Junctions and Applications of Tunneling

6.      Coulomb Blockade and the Single-Electron Transistor

7.      Carbon Nanotubes and Nanowire Transistors

8.      Many Electron Phenomena-Particle Statistics

9.      Models of Quantum Wells, Quantum Wires and Quantum Dots

10.   Nanowires, Ballistic Transport, and Spin Transport

11.   NanoCMOS / Silicon-on-Insulator (SOI) CMOS

12.   Fundamental Limits to Scaling



Homework + project#1 + project#2                          20% + 15% + 20%

Midterm Exam                                                            20%

Final Exam                                                                  25% 

(Exam will be announced in class at least two weeks before the exam.)


Lecture Notes, Slides, Reference Materials, Homework Assignments and Project Description


1. Chapter I Introduction to Nanoelectronics - Lecture Note Slides (ppt) and Lecture Note Slides (pdf)


2. Particles, waves and quantum particles - Lecture Note Slides  (ppt) and Lecture Note Slides (pdf)


3. Chapter 3 Introduction of Quantum Mechanics - Lecture Note Slides  (ppt) and Lecture Note Slides (pdf)



Homework #1

Chapter 3: Problem (page 81 -84)

1, 2, 3, 4, 8, 9, 15, 16

The homework is due on Feb. 14, 2019.


Chapter 3 solution


Simulation software: Quantum Espresso, you can download the software here:




Example papers: MoS2 phase change due to strain         2D MoS2-WS2 heterojunction


Project assignment


4. Chapter 4 Free and Confined Electrons - Lecture Note Slides (ppt)


Homework #2: 4.4, 4.8, 4.11 and  4.17, due on Feb 21


Chapter 4 problem solution


Chapter 4 text


5. Chapter 5 Electrons Subject to a Periodic Potential - Band Theory of Solids - Lecture Note Slides (ppt)


Chapter 5 text


Section 5.5 Graphene and Carbon Nanotubes


MoS2 monolayers: effects of doping, strain and size


Homework #4: Chapter 5, page 177, Problem 2, 6, 17, 21. It is due on March 21, 2019


Project Phase 1 is due on March 21, 2019


Homework solution


6. Chapter 6 Tunnel Junctions and Applications of Tunneling - Lecture Note Slides (ppt) or pdf format


Homework #3: 6.4, 6.6 and 6.12, it is due on March 28, 2019 


Chapter 6 solution


Midterm Exam 1 - March 23: covering Chapter 1, 2, 3, 4 and 6.


Midterm Exam solution


7. Chapter 7 Coulomb Blockade and The single-electron transistor - Lecture Note slides part 1 and Lecture Note slides part 2


Chapter Text


Paper to read for Coulomb Blockade effect


Lecture Note slides part 2


Homework #5, Chapter 7: 7.3,  7.9,  7.11,  7.15. It is due on April 11.


Homework solution


8. Chapter 10 Nanowire and Ballistic Transport (lecture note)


Review of Ballistic Transport




Lecture 9 Magnetic materials and spintronics (slides)


Review of Spintronics -1 (self-reading)


Review of Spintronics -2 (self-reading)



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