Master’s program in “Molecular Electronics and System Design”, 120 ECTS credits (two year program)
Molecular electronics, i.e., electronics based on semi-conducting and conducting organic molecules and polymers, is a rapidly developing area of technology both internationally and in Sweden. All of the large electronics companies are involved in the development of organic electronic systems and commercial products such as flat panel displays, which are now commercially available. Molecular electronics, also called organic electronics, is however a comparatively young technology; it has only been 15 years since the first polymer-based light emitting diode was demonstrated. Since this discovery, the technology development has been carried out mainly by physicists and chemists focused on the theory of the unique material properties and obtaining new and better organic molecules and polymers for various applications. This is not unlike the development of silicon-based technology, where much effort was first put into understanding the physics and developing silicon wafers of sufficient crystallinity, purity and adequate doping. Once the material properties of silicon were properly understood and controlled, the electrical engineers took over and carried out the, at that time revolutionary, development of new electronic components (transistors, etc.) and systems. Organic electronics is now reaching the same state of maturity, and the field thus needs electrical engineers that are skilled in (component and) system design while having a good understanding of the properties (electrical, chemical and process-related) of organic electronic materials.
The aim of the Master’s Program is to give students excellent skills in traditional electronics system design as well as in molecular electronics. The students will also take courses on more general engineering topics such as project management, statistical process control and experimental design, and technical English. The students should, upon completion of the program, be well prepared for a career in the traditional electronics industry and in companies developing organic electronic applications.
The program consists of 1.5 years (3 semesters) of course work and a Master’s Thesis (0.5 years), and starts in January each year. See http://www.lith.liu.se/en/master/ for more details.
Program description (Courses, etc)
The program begins with courses in “traditional” electronics design and introductory molecular physics and organic electronics. More advanced courses on electronics design and organic electronics, as well as general engineering courses, then follow. All courses are offered in English.
Molecular Electronics in Sweden
Sweden is one of the leading countries in the development of this field. Linköping University has many strong research groups covering the whole field from quantum-chemical calculations of energy levels and charge transfer in molecules to experimental materials characterization and device development. Acreo AB, a research institute located at the Norrköping Campus, is one of the leading developers of paper-based electronics, i.e., electronic circuitry printed on paper from organic semiconducting and conducting inks using traditional printing techniques. A number of start-up companies based on organic electronics exist in the Linköping-Norrköping region, with Thin Film Electronics AB (polymer-based memory) being the largest.
Electronic system design in Sweden
Sweden has (per capita) a large electronics industry, with an especially strong presence in communication electronics where a number of companies such as Ericsson are global players. Research at Linköping University reflects this with a number of strong groups at both the Norrköping and the Linköping campus. A large number of electronics companies are located in the Linköping University science park and the Swedish Defense Research Institute has located its programs on electronics in a location adjacent to Linköping University.
Links to research groups connected to the program: