Carrier Scattering at Low Electric Fields

  • Karl W. Böer
  • Udo W. PohlEmail author
Living reference work entry

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Carrier scattering, originating from deviations from ideal lattice periodicity, acts as a damping process for carrier motion. Both elastic and inelastic scattering involve a large variety of scattering centers. Carriers are scattered by acoustic and optical phonons, at neutral or charged impurities, at interfaces, and at other scattering centers. Most scattering events are elastic, changing only the momentum of a carrier but not its energy. Inelastic scattering involves optical phonons and intervalley scattering; in these processes carriers lose much of their energy to the lattice.

At low electric fields, many elastic scattering events precede an inelastic event. The dominating type of scattering changes with lattice temperature. Usually, ionized-impurity scattering prevails at low temperatures and scattering at phonons at high temperatures. The type of carrier scattering determines the relaxation time and with it the carrier mobility.


Acoustic-phonon scattering Alloy scattering Carrier-carrier scattering Carrier mobility Deformation potential Elastic scattering Inelastic scattering Intervalley scattering Momentum-relaxation time Optical-phonon scattering Piezoelectric scattering Scattering centers Surface-induced scattering 


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© Springer International Publishing AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.NaplesUSA
  2. 2.Institut für Festkörperphysik, EW5-1Technische Universität BerlinBerlinGermany

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