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Project Prepared By

Sushruta Dey
Roll Number :46
Board’s Roll Number:
Kendriya Vidyalaya Fort William

To study and
understand the working
of a semiconductor.

It is hereby to certify that, the original
and genuine project work has been carried
out to study about the subject matter and
the related data collection and
investigation has been completed solely,
sincerely and satisfactorily by Sushruta
Dey of CLASS XII A, Kendriya Vidyalaya
Fort William , regarding his project titled
“N type ,P Type and working theory of

Teacher’s Signature


It would be my utmost pleasure to express
my sincere thanks to My Physics Teacher
Mrs. J Sahoo and our dearest Mr. A.K Das
Sir in providing a helping hand in this
project. Their valuable guidance, support
and supervision all through this project titled
“N type ,P Type and working theory of
semiconductors”. are responsible for
attaining its present form.

Sushruta Dey

In recent days, Semiconductors are the most
used things which are used in electronics, so I
wanted to know its working.

Another fact which inspired me to do this
project is that I am in touch with qualitative
analysis whose knowledge with other factors
helped me to do so.


 Introduction
 Theory and Definition
 Effect of temperature on conductivity
of Semiconductor
 Intrinsic Semiconductors
 N-type Semiconductor
 P-type Semiconductor
 Electrical Resistivity of


Most of the solids can be placed in
one of the two classes: Metals and
insulators. Metals are those through
which electric charge can easily flow,
while insulators are those through which
electric charge is difficult to flow. This
distinction between the metals and the
insulators can be explained on the basis
of the number of free electrons in them.
Metals have a large number of free
electrons which act as charge carriers,
while insulators have practically no free

There are however, certain solids
whose electrical conductivity is
intermediate between metals and
insulators. They are called
„Semiconductors‟. Carbon, silicon and
germanium are examples of semi-
conductors. In semiconductors the outer
most electrons are neither so rigidly
bound with the atom as in an insulator,
nor so loosely bound as in metal. At
absolute zero a semiconductor becomes
an ideal insulator.

Theory and Definition

Semiconductors are the materials
whose electrical conductivity lies in
between metals and insulator. The
energy band structure of the
semiconductors is similar to the
insulators but in their case, the size of
the forbidden energy gap is much
smaller than that of the insulator. In
this class of crystals, the forbidden gap is
of the order of about 1ev, and the two
energy bands are distinctly separate
with no overlapping. At absolute o0, no
electron has any energy even to jump
the forbidden gap and reach the
conduction band. Therefore the
substance is an insulator. But when we
heat the crystal and thus provide some
energy to the atoms and their electrons,
it becomes an easy matter for some
electrons to jump the small (» 1 ev)
energy gap and go to conduction band.
Thus at higher temperatures, the crystal
becomes a conductors. This is the
specific property of the crystal which is
known as a semiconductor.

Effect of temperature on
conductivity of Semiconductor

At 0K, all semiconductors are
insulators. The valence band at absolute
zero is completely filled and there are no
free electrons in conduction band. At
room temperature the electrons jump to
the conduction band due to the thermal
energy. When the temperature
increases, a large number of electrons
cross over the forbidden gap and jump
from valence to conduction band. Hence
conductivity of semiconductor increases
with temperature.


Pure semiconductors are called
intrinsic semi-conductors. In a pure
semiconductor, each atom behaves as if
there are 8 electrons in its valence shell
and therefore the entire material
behaves as an insulator at low

A semiconductor atom needs energy
of the order of 1.1ev to shake off the
valence electron. This energy becomes
available to it even at room
temperature. Due to thermal agitation
of crystal structure, electrons from a few
covalent bonds come out. The bond
from which electron is freed, a vacancy
is created there. The vacancy in the
covalent bond is called a hole.

This hole can be filled by some other
electron in a covalent bond. As an
electron from covalent bond moves to fill
the hole, the hole is created in the
covalent bond from which the electron
has moved. Since the direction of
movement of the hole is opposite to that
of the negative electron, a hole behaves
as a positive charge carrier. Thus, at
room temperature, a pure
semiconductor will have electrons and
holes wandering in random directions.
These electrons and holes are called
intrinsic carriers.

As the crystal is neutral, the number
of free electrons will be equal to the
number of holes. In an intrinsic
semiconductor, if ne denotes the electron
number density in conduction band, nh
the hole number density in valence band
and ni the number density or
concentration of charge carriers, then

ne = nh = ni

Extrinsic semiconductors

As the conductivity of intrinsic semi-
conductors is poor, so intrinsic semi-
conductors are of little practical
importance. The conductivity of pure
semi-conductor can, however be
enormously increased by addition of some
pentavalent or a trivalent impurity in a
very small amount (about 1 to

of the semi-conductor). The process of
adding an impurity to a pure
semiconductor so as to improve its
conductivity is called doping. Such semi-
conductors are called extrinsic semi-
conductors. Extrinsic semiconductors are
of two types :
i) n-type semiconductor
ii) p-type semiconductor
n-type semiconductor

When an impurity atom belonging to
group V of the periodic table like Arsenic
is added to the pure semi-conductor,
then four of the five impurity electrons
form covalent bonds by sharing one
electron with each of the four nearest
silicon atoms, and fifth electron from
each impurity atom is almost free to
conduct electricity. As the pentavalent
impurity increases the number of free
electrons, it is called donor impurity. The
electrons so set free in the silicon crystal
are called extrinsic carriers and the n-
type Si-crystal is called n-type extrinsic
semiconductor. Therefore n-type Si-
crystal will have a large number of free
electrons (majority carriers) and have a
small number of holes (minority carriers).

In terms of valence and conduction
band one can think that all such electrons
create a donor energy level just below the
conduction band as shown in figure. As
the energy gap between donor energy
level and the conduction band is very
small, the electrons can easily raise
themselves to conduction band even at
room temperature. Hence, the
conductivity of n-type extrinsic
semiconductor is markedly increased.

In a doped or extrinsic semiconductor,
the number density of the conduction
band (ne) and the number density of
holes in the valence band (nh) differ from
that in a pure semiconductor. If ni is the
number density of electrons is conduction
band, then it is proved that
ne.nh =

p-type semiconductor

If a trivalent impurity like indium is
added in pure semi-conductor, the
impurity atom can provide only three
valence electrons for covalent bond
formation. Thus a gap is left in one of
the covalent bonds. The gap acts as a
hole that tends to accept electrons. As
the trivalent impurity atoms accept
electrons from the silicon crystal, it is
called acceptor impurity. The holes so
created are extrinsic carriers and the p-
type Si-crystal so obtained is called p-
type extrinsic semiconductor. Again, as
the pure Si-crystal also possesses a few
electrons and holes, therefore, the p-type
si-crystal will have a large number of
holes (majority carriers) and a small
number of electrons (minority carriers).

It terms of valence and conduction
band one can think that all such holes
create an accepter energy level just above
the top of the valance band as shown in
figure. The electrons from valence band
can raise themselves to the accepter
energy level by absorbing thermal energy
at room temperature and in turn create
holes in the valence band.

Number density of valence band holes
(nh) in p-type semiconductor is
approximately equal to that of the
acceptor atoms (Na) and is very large as
compared to the number density of
conduction band electrons (ne). Thus,
nh>> Na > > ne

Electrical Resistivity of Semiconductors
Consider a block of semiconductor of length l1 area
of cross-section A and having number density of
electrons and holes as ne and nh respectively. Suppose
that on applying a potential difference, say V, a current
I flows through it as shown in figure. The electron
current (Ic) and the hole current (Ih) constitute the
current I flowing through the semi conductor i.e.
I=Ie +Ih (i)

It ne is the number density of conduction band
electrons in the semiconductor and ve, the drift velocity
of electrons then
Ie = eneAve
Similarly, the hole current, Ih = enhAvh
From (i)
I = eneAve + enhAvh
I = eA(neve + nhvh) (ii)

If  is the resistivity of the material of the
semiconductor, then the resistance offered by the
semiconductor to the flow of current is given by :
R =  l/A (iii)

Since V = RI, from equation (ii) and (iii) we have
V = RI =  l/A eA (neve + nh vh)

V=  le(neve +nhvh) (iv)
If E is the electric field set up across the semiconductor,
E=V/l (v)
from equation (iv) and (v), we have
E = e (neve + nhvh)
1/ = e (ne ve/E + nh vh/E)
On applying electric field, the drift velocity
acquired by the electrons (or holes) per unit strength of
electric field is called mobility of electrons (or
holes). Therefore, mobility of electrons and holes is
given by :
e = ve/E and h = vh/E
1/ =e(ne e +nh h) (vi)
Also, = 1/ is called conductivity of the material
of semiconductor
 =e(ne e +nh h) (vii)
The relation (vi) and (vii) show that the
conductivity and resistivity of a semiconductor depend
upon the electron and hole number densities and their
mobilities. As ne and nh increases with rise in
temperature, therefore, conductivity of semiconductor
increases with rise in temperature and resistivity
decreases with rise in temperature.