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Professor, Department of Physics
Professor Williams is an experimental applied physicist who explores the physical properties of solid surfaces and molecules on a nanometer scale, namely semiconductor and dielectric materials. The probing of atomic and molecular properties on this scale is achieved using a variety of newly demonstrated Scanning Probe Microscopes, cousins of the Scanning Tunneling Microscope. Examples include nanometer scale capacitance measurements - used to quantitatively determine local carrier density, impurity distribution and surface charge density of semiconductors. Electrostatic force measurements are employed to determine charge distribution and surface potential on a nanometer scale. Atomic Force Microscopy provides the method for visualizing, characterizing and manipulating small structures. Recent interests have stimulated the development of a scanning probe method capable of detecting single electron tunneling events, manipulating single electrons to/from electronic states at dielectric surfaces to map the trap density.