Numerical modeling of Bloch oscillations in periodic structures
Coppeans, Walter A., III
Luscombe, James H.
Armstead, Robert L.
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Felix Bloch's 1928 article made a prediction concerning the dynamical behavior of electrons in a solid, subject to a uniform, static electric field. This aspect of his work, as later clarified by Zener, showed that electrons accelerated by an electric field in a periodic potential, under the right conditions, would oscillate. A theoretical debate as to the existence of this phenomenon has been ongoing since Bloch's proposal. One of the most controversial consequences of this prediction is that an electron undergoing Bloch oscillations would radiate. The controversy on the theoretical analysis was due to the great difficulty in systematically and reliably treating interband transitions by analytical methods based on the time-dependent Schrodinger equation for independent electrons. In this thesis, we numerically solve the time-dependent Schrodinger equation to show that electrons accelerated by in an electric field in periodic structures do undergo Bloch oscillations and other dynamic behavior. By accurately modeling this phenomenon, we hope to gain a better understanding of it in hopes of using it in future applications as a stable source of Terahertz (THz) radiation.
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