Optical Properties of Solids

  • Gerald D. Mahan
Part of the Physics of Solids and Liquids book series (PSLI)


This section is concerned with the optical properties of free-particle systems, such as electrons in metals or semiconductors. A completely free-electron system does not absorb light at all, so that its optical properties are uninteresting. The ability of the nearly free-particle system to absorb light is due to its imperfections or deviations from homogeneity. If these effects are small, then so is the light absorption. This situation is described here. The optical properties are calculated for simple metals and semiconductors. The best way to do this is using the so called force—force correlation function.


Correlation Function Spectral Function Interband Transition Final State Interaction Ladder Diagram 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gerald D. Mahan
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.University of TennesseeKnoxvilleUSA
  2. 2.Oak Ridge National LaboratoryUSA

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