Department of Physics
Professor Lynn L. Hatfield, Chairperson.
Horn Professors Estreicher and Menzel; Bucy Professor Wigmans; Professors Borst, Cheng, Gangopadhyay, Lichti, Lodhi, and Myles; Associate Professors Gibson, Glab, Holtz, Huang, Lamp, and Papadimitriou; Assistant Professor Thacker; Joint Professors Kristiansen, Krompholz, Portnoy, Quitevis, and Temkin.
This department offers study in the following graduate degree programs: PHYSICS, Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy. Options in applied physics leading to the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees are also offered. These interdisciplinary options afford flexibility in course work and area of research concentration. Specializations in chemical physics (in cooperation with the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry) and biophysics (in cooperation with the Health Sciences Center and the University Medical Center) are also available. An M.S. degree involving industry internships is available to selected graduate students.
All graduate students must enroll in PHYS 5101 (for the first three semesters) and PHYS 5104 (whenever on a teaching assistantship). PHYS 5312, 5322, and 5307 are tools courses that develop necessary skills for use in other courses and in research. They are most useful when taken early.
A core curriculum consisting of PHYS 5301, 5303, 5305, and 5306 forms the nucleus of the master's and Ph.D. programs and is the basis for the comprehensive master's final examination and the Ph.D. qualifying examination. A student selecting any of the degree options may designate a minor consisting of a minimum of 6 hours of course credit in a related area and satisfy any additional requirements of the minor department. (These 6 hours may be taken in the Physics Department.) Full-time study towards the master's degree typically should be completed in about two years.
M.S. Degree in Physics, Thesis Option. A minimum of 24 hours of course credit plus 6 hours of thesis research with a minimum of 18 hours in the department, plus a master's thesis. The thesis is defended in a final oral examination.
M.S. Degree in Applied Physics, Thesis Option. A minimum of 24 hours of course credit plus 6 hours of thesis research with a minimum of 9 hours in a specified applied area. This may be in a subfield of physics or in a related discipline, with the master's thesis from that area. The thesis is defended in a final oral examination.
M.S. Degree in Applied Physics, Internship Option. 24 hours of course credit ( a separate course sequence from that above) plus two semesters of internship in a regional industry or research laboratory arranged through the department. A departmental report is written following each internship period, and defended in an oral examination. Twelve hours of internship or report credit is required beyond the course work.
M.S. Degree in Physics, Nonthesis Option. 36 hours of course credit with a minimum of 24 hours in the department, plus passing a comprehensive master's final examination. This option is normally reserved for students in the Ph.D. program.
Ph.D. Degree in Physics and Ph.D. Degree in Applied Physics. 45 hours of course work in the major beyond the B.S. degree and 15 hours outside the major, plus dissertation research. The 15 hours may be taken partially or entirely in the Physics Department. They also may be counted toward a minor. The student should consult with the graduate advisor and the research advisor about this.
The core courses for the Ph.D. degree are the same as those for the M.S. degree plus PHYS 5302 and 6306. Further selections should be made from PHYS 5304, 5307, 5311, 5322, 7304, and 5300 (which may be repeated in different topics).
Ph.D. degree students taking the applied physics option normally take the same core courses as above. Other courses in the degree plan are worked out between the student and the graduate advisor in consultation with the research advisor.
All students should get involved in research early by taking PHYS 7000, which may count toward the degree. Thesis hours in PHYS 6000 (6 hours required for the M.S., thesis option) and 8000 (12 hours required for the Ph.D.) should be taken as early as possible and as part of the research.
Students seeking the Ph.D. degree must pass preliminary and qualifying examinations as described in the departmental Graduate Booklet and in accordance with Graduate School requirements. The examination topics are from general undergraduate physics and graduate core courses. After completing the research, the candidate prepares the dissertation and makes an oral defense of it before his or her committee and other interested persons.
Courses in Physics. (PHYS)
5001. Master's Internship (V1-12). Internship in an industrial or research laboratory setting. Arranged through the department and directly related to degree program with approval of Internship Coordinator.
5101. Seminar (1:1:0). Must be taken by every graduate student for at least the first four semesters. Must be taken pass-fail.
5104. Instructional Laboratory Techniques in Physics (1:1:0). Laboratory organization and explanation of instructional techniques. Does not count toward the minimum requirement of a graduate degree. Must be taken pass-fail by all teaching assistants each semester.
5231. Solid State Device Seminar (2:2:1). The structures of simple semiconductor devices and physical description of their electrical function; includes basic device related measurement.
5300. Special Topics (3:3:0). Prerequisite: Approval of graduate advisor. Topics in semiconductor, plasma, surface, particle physics, spectroscopy, and others. May be repeated in different areas.
5301. Quantum Mechanics I (3:3:0). Experimental basis and history, wave equation, Schrödinger equation, harmonic oscillator, piece wise constant potentials, WKB approximation, central forces and angular momentum, hydrogen atom, spin, two-level systems, and scattering. M.S. and Ph.D. core course.
5302. Quantum Mechanics II (3:3:0). Prerequisite: PHYS 5301 or equivalent. Quantum dynamics, rotations, bound-state and time-dependent perturbation theory, identical particles, atomic and molecular structure, electromagnetic interactions, and formal scattering theory. Ph.D. core course.
5303. Electromagnetic Theory (3:3:0). Electrostatics and magnetostatics, time varying fields, Maxwell's equations and conservation laws, electromagnetic waves in materials, and waveguides. M.S. and Ph.D. core course.
5304. Solid State Physics (3:3:0). Prerequisite: PHYS 5301 or equivalent. A survey of the microscopic properties of crystalline solids. Major topics include lattice structures, vibrational properties, electronic band structure, and electronic transport.
5305. Statistical Physics (3:3:0). Elements of probability theory and statistics; foundations of kinetic theory. Gibb's statistical mechanics, the method of Darwin and Fowler, derivation of the laws of macroscopic thermodynamics from statistical considerations; other selected applications in both classical and quantum physics. M.S. and Ph.D. core course.
5306. Classical Dynamics (3:3:0). Lagrangian dynamics and variational principles. Kinematics and dynamics of two-body scattering. Rigid body dynamics. Hamiltonian dynamics, canonical transformations, and Hamilton-Jacobi theory of discrete and continuous systems. M.S. and Ph.D. core course.
5307. Methods in Physics I (3:3:0). Provides first-year graduate students the necessary skill in mathematical methods for graduate courses in physical sciences; applications such as coordinate systems, vector and tensor analysis, matrices, group theory, functions of a complex variable, variational methods, Fourier series, integral transforms, Sturm-Liouville theory, eigenvalues and functions, Green functions, special functions and boundary value problems. Tools course.
5309. Atomic and Molecular Physics (3:3:0). Prerequisite: PHYS 5301 or equivalent. A survey of atomic and molecular physics. Major topics include group theory, molecular orbital theory, and energy transfer processes.
5311. Nuclear Physics (3:3:0). Prerequisite: PHYS 5301 or equivalent. Symmetries in nuclear physics, nuclear interactions, nuclear models, nuclear reactions, scattering, resonance, nuclear energy, applications.
5312. Techniques of Graduate Research (3:1:4). Use of test equipment and shop tools; design and performance of experiments; reports; literature search; writing of scientific papers; and other fundamental aspects of graduate research. Tools course.
5315. Electromagnetism I (3:3:0). Prerequisite: PHYS 2301, MATH 3350, 3351, or equivalent. Survey of the fundamental laws and applications of electromagnetism. For graduate students in departments other than physics.
5316. Electromagnetism II (3:3:0). Prerequisite: PHYS 5315. Electromagnetic fields and special relativity. For graduate students in departments other than physics.
5322. Computational Physics (3:2:2). Numerical modeling of physical systems. Data acquisition and analysis. Graphics for displaying complex results. Quadrature schemes and solution of equations. Use of minicomputers and microcomputers. Tools course.
5324. Classical Mechanics I (3:3:0). Prerequisite: PHYS 1308, MATH 3350, 3351, or equivalent. Introduction to Newtonian Mechanics, Euler-Lagrange Equations, and Hamilton's Principle. For graduate students in departments other than physics.
5330. Semiconductor Materials and Processing (3:3:0). Survey of semiconductor materials deposition, characterization, and processing techniques with emphasis on the fundamental physical interactions underlying device processing steps.
5332. Semiconductor Characterization and Processing Laboratory (3:1:4). A hands-on introduction to semiconductor processing technology and materials characterization techniques. Intended to accompany PHYS 5330.
5335. Physics of Semiconductors (3:3:0). Theoretical description of the physical and electrical properties of semiconductors; Band structures, vibrational properties and phonons, defects, transport and carrier statistics, optical properties, and quantum confinement.
5336. Device Physics (3:3:2). Principles of semiconductor devices; description of modeling of p/n junctions, transistors, and other basic units in integrated circuits; relationship between physical structures and electrical parameters.
5371. Conceptual Physics for Teachers (3:3:0). Inquiry-based course in elementary physical principles of mechanics, heat, electricity, and magnetism.
5372. Astronomy for Teachers (3:3:0). Inquiry-based course in solar system, stellar, and galactic astronomy. Discusses history of human understanding of the universe.
6000. Master's Thesis (V1-6).
6002. Master's Report (V1-6).
6306. Advanced Electromagnetic Theory (3:3:0). Prerequisite: PHYS 5303. Classical theory of fields, special theory of relativity and electrodynamics, radiation, antennas, scattering and diffraction, special topics. Ph.D. core course.
7000. Research (V1-12).
7304. Condensed Matter Physics (3:3:0). Prerequisite: PHYS 5304. Problems of current interest in condensed matter physics. Topics include transport properties in solids, superconductivity, magnetism, semiconductors, and related topics.
8000. Doctor's Dissertation (V1-12).
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LAST UPDATE: 3-9-01