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Electron collision and periodic crystal

  1. Nov 4, 2013 #1
    Ashcroft & Mermin, Solid State Physics, page 315:
    "According to the Bloch theory, an electron in a perfectly periodic arrays of ions experiences no collision at all".

    But how about the electron at the border of Brillouin zone? How does diffraction take place there?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 4, 2013 #2

    UltrafastPED

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    Brillouin zones are just a k-space version of the unit cell. Your book is telling you that perfect crystals don't have electron scattering events.

    For a nice discussion see: http://www.tf.uni-kiel.de/matwis/amat/semi_en/kap_2/backbone/r2_1_4.html

    The conclusion from Ashcroft & Mermin is included. Note that Bragg reflections (diffraction patterns) are a result of interference effects between electron wave functions, not scattering of electrons.
     
  4. Nov 5, 2013 #3
    Ok, Thanks. But why do electron wave functions interfere? As far as I know, it is due to scattering.
     
  5. Nov 5, 2013 #4

    UltrafastPED

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    The "wave function" is a representation of the probability amplitude wave ... and interference is a fundamental wave property. If they _didn't_ interfere it would mean that there is no wave.
     
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