Nanoscale Device Characterization Division
The Nanoscale Device Characterization Division (NDCD) is based in Gaithersburg, Maryland, and operates within the Physical Measurement Laboratory at NIST.
The Division's mission is to develop and advance the measurement and knowledge infrastructure to characterize nano- and atom-scale engineered materials and solid-state devices for innovation in information processing, sensing, and future quantum technologies.
The NDCD’s technical activities span atom scale devices, nanoscale spectroscopy, nanoscale imaging, nanoscale processes and measurements, and alternative computing.
News and Updates
- Hall Effect
The history of the Hall effect begins in 1879 when Edwin H. Hall discovered that a small transverse voltage appeared across a current-carrying thin metal strip in an applied magnetic field. Until that time, electrical measurements provided only the carrier density-mobility product, and the separation of these two important physical quantities had to rely on other difficult measurements. The discovery of the Hall effect enabled a direct measure of the carrier density. The polarity of this transverse Hall voltage proved that it is in fact electrons that are physically moving in an electric current. Development of the technique has since led to a mature and practical tool, which today is used routinely for characterizing the electrical properties and quality of almost all of the semiconductor materials used by industry and in research labs throughout the world.