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Mathematical and physical concepts in nanoscience

  1. Jun 5, 2014 #1
    Dear all,

    I am going to attend masters program in micro and nano technology. I would like to know what concepts of maths and physics I should be clear at and some good textbooks for the same. My study module includes nanoscience, nanomaterials and nano electronic design.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 7, 2014 #2
    I knew some people who had a college level of math and physics and earned a PhD in this discipline by producing a lot of data that came from following procedure - such as cleaning samples in HF, then processing them and doing simple averaging of results. Many times your advisor will already have in mind what you need to accomplish so no need to overthink things...

    But if one would like to rise higher than a mere practitioner, the math/phys levels in this discipline (in a graduate school with more empirically minded faculty) are:

    - physics: college level. B.Sc. is already too high. Understanding the Heisenberg's uncertainty principle or atomic physics is considered highly advanced in such disciplines. After all, they teach how to estimate packing/volume in unit cells in a crystal based on the volume of an atom which they consider dependent on its atomic number :smile: lol Most graduate courses you'll be through are at a practitioner's level - that is, procedures, methods and tools for characterization or crystal growth/deposition etc, cleaning of surfaces with sand blasting etc mundane things :smile:

    - math: College level with some chapters in Calculus - integrals, fourier transforms, some ODEs and PDEs, functions extrema... nothing too fancy at all. You'll prob be required to pass 1-2 math courses at the graduate level, which I described above. Once you pass these, you might never use the knowledge if you work in a practitioner's lab (which is often the case in this field).

    Books to prepare for this kind of math/phys level? I cannot suggest them, as I myself didn't dwell on that level much... But a suggestion: go to the website of Applied Physics Letters (which is in effect, largely a nanoscience/microelectronics journal :smile:) and check out the articles there. Many of them contain little math. (I'm sure some of them are highly mathematical) This will indicate the lowest levels of math / physics at which one can still produce highly regarded work in this field.

    All the best in your studies. It can be an interesting field and land you a rewarding job in a microelectronics company.
  4. Jun 8, 2014 #3
    Thanks a lot sunfire. I'll take a look at the applied physics letters.
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