2019 Condensed Matter Physics I

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Academic unit or major
Undergraduate major in Physics
Hirahara Toru  Hirayama Hiroyuki 
Course component(s)
Day/Period(Room No.)
Tue3-4(H116)  Fri3-4(H116)  
Course number
Academic year
Offered quarter
Syllabus updated
Lecture notes updated
Language used
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Course description and aims

This course provides a comprohensive view of the central concepts of following topics in physics; magnetism by localized magnetic moments, quantum theory of electric conduction in metals and semiconductors, topological insulators, superconductivity, surface physics, lasers and ultracold atom gases.
Students will study basic concepts under novel phenomena which happen at various aspects in condensed matter physics.

Student learning outcomes

Condensed matter physics deals with the various physical properties of condensed phases of matter. The goal of this course is to provide students understanding of basic concepts of several hot and improtant aspects of modern condensed matterphysics.


magnetism, semiconductor physics, surface physics, laser optics, superconductivity and low temperature physics, ultracold atom gases.

Competencies that will be developed

Intercultural skills Communication skills Specialist skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills
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Class flow

We take up one subject of the list below in each class.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Exchange interaction Explain what is the exchange interaction.
Class 2 Local magnetic moment and magnetism Describe local magnetic moment and magnetism.
Class 3 Electrical conduction Students must understand basic factors which determine the electrical conduction in solids.
Class 4 Landauer formula and quantized conductance Students must understand the Landauer formula and the reason why the conductance is quantified in nano world.
Class 5 Energy bands and effective-mass approximation Students must understand the advantages of the effective-mass appproximation in analysis of band structures of solids.
Class 6 Carrier conductance in semiconductors Students must understand the charcteristic conduction at semidonductor pn junctions.
Class 7 Compound semiconductors and quantum wells Students must understand the bandgap engineering based quantum well states at heterojunctions of compound semiconductors.
Class 8 Topological Insulators Students must understand what's topological insulator, and the characteristic edge state.
Class 9 Low temperature physics and superconductivity Explain the meaning of low temperature physics and superconductivity.
Class 10 superconducting materials and mechanism Describe superconducting materials and superconducting mechanism in these materials.
Class 11 Surface structure and electronic states Students must understand characteristic reconstructions and electronic states at surfaces.
Class 12 Surface analysis methods Students must understand the basic concepts of electron diffraction, scanning tunneling microscope, and angle-resolved photoelectron spectroscopy at surfaces.
Class 13 Optical gain and lasers Explain optical gain and lasers.
Class 14 Laser applications in physics Explain laser applications in physics.
Class 15 Ultracold atomic gases Explain characteristic feature of ultracold atomic gases.


Course materials are provided during class.

Reference books, course materials, etc.

〔Hirayama〕: J. H. Davies, The Physics of Low-dimensional Semiconductors: an introduction, Cambridge (1988).

〔Hirahara〕: Japanese textbooks are shown above.

Assessment criteria and methods

Students' course scores are mainly based on final exam.

Related courses

  • PHY.C340 : Basic Solid State Physics
  • ZUB.Q204 : Quantum Mechanics I
  • ZUB.S205 : Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics I
  • PHY.C342 : Condensed Matter Physics II

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

Students must have successfully completed PHY.C340, ZUB.Q204, and ZUB.S205.

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