Instructional Information

Instructional Materials:
  • Optical Properties of Solids

The 12 lectures by Dr. Stefan Zollner follow the textbook by Mark Fox “Optical Properties of Solids”, with additional materials by the instructor to make the lectures more self-contained, especially for scientists from other disciplines. They will cover the basic theory for transmission and reflection of light based on Maxwell’s equations and the optical properties of metals and insulators using the Drude and Lorentz oscillator models for electrons and phonons, which form the basis of ellipsometry data analysis. They will then move on to describe infrared lattice absorption, interband absorption in semiconductors, the excitonic enhancement of these transitions due to electron-hole interaction, photoluminescence, and finite-size quantum effects leading to a blueshift of the optical spectra in confined systems. Mathematical formalisms will be kept to a minimum. Instead, the focus is on concepts, graphs and figures, and the interpretation of optical spectra.

Reading materials:

           Propagation of Electromagnetic Waves in Continuous Media   

Lectures and Slides:

 Lecture title  
1Introductions, lecture series overview, spectroscopy, solid-state physicsVideoSlides
2Crystal structures, Wyckoff positions, point and space groups, classification of optical vibrationsVideoSlides
3Maxwell’s equations in vacuum, plane waves, polarized light, Stokes parameters, Poincare sphereVideoSlides
4Maxwell’s equations in media, polarizability, dielectric function, Lorentz and Drude modelVideoSlides
5Analytical properties of dielectric function, Kramers-Kronig relations, Sellmeier, poles, CauchyVideoSlides
6Applications of Lorentz & Drude models to insulators (semiconductors, oxides) & metals, polaritonsVideoSlides
7Electronic band structure, direct and indirect band gaps, Fermi’s Golden RuleVideoSlides
8Free electrons, effective masses in semiconductors, direct-gap absorption, excitonsVideoSlides
9Interband transitions, van Hove singularities, critical-point lineshapesVideoSlides
10Photoluminescence, Einstein coefficients, quantum confinement, quantum wells, wires, and dotsVideoSlides
11Applications I: Anisotropic materialVideoSlides
12Applications II: Properties of thin films, stress/strain, deformation potentialsVideoSlides