What are Non-Crystalline Semiconductors

  • Hellmut Fritzsche
Part of the Springer Series in Solid-State Sciences book series (SSSOL, volume 25)

Abstract

We are presently participating in the development of a fascinating new field of solid-state physics. Although glasses have been known for over 10,000 years and during the course of a day you are likely to encounter more noncrystalline than crystalline solids, there is hardly a solid-state textbook which mentions glassy or amorphous materials. The beginning of our field is difficult to pin down. In the 1950’s KOLOMIETS [1] showed that chalcogenide glasses behaved like intrinsic semiconductors and that their electrical conductivity could not be increased by adding dopants. In 1957 SPEAR [2] reported the first drift mobility measurements in vitreous Se and TAUC [3] reported the first studies on amorphous Ge in the early 1960’s. Many more scientists were drawn to our field through the work of OVSHINSKY [4]: the discovery of switching and memory effects in chalcogenide glasses. These as well as optical memory effects, imaging, photodoping, and the reversible photostructural changes suggested possibilities for new applications of noncrystalline semiconductors. These phenomena demonstrated that there was a large field of material science which was virtually unexplored.

Keywords

Entropy Porosity Crystallization Enthalpy Hexagonal 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1981

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hellmut Fritzsche
    • 1
  1. 1.The James Franck Institute and Department of PhysicsThe University of ChicagoChicagoUSA

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