ECEN 3250, Microelectronics, Spring 2018


Weekly Updates, 1/23/2018:

-        Reminder: homework is due at the start of class on Friday (must be paper copy, no emails). No late work is accepted, because solutions will be posted to canvas at noon.

-        Please note a change in office hours: they will now be Mondays 5-6pm and Thursdays 3:30-4:30 pm (no Tuesday OH).


Weekly Updates, 1/10/2018:

-        Welcome to ECEN3250! The course syllabus can be found here.

-        All other documents, including lecture notes and homeworks, will be available at the course website on Canvas. To access Canvas, go to: Log in using your CU login name and IdentiKey password. Once you log-in, click on ECEN 3250-001: Microelectronics to go into our course.

o   Homework will be posted on Fridays, and are due at the beginning of class on the following Friday (except for exam weeks).

o   Lecture notes will be posted in advance of each lecture.


Course Information:

Instructor: Prof. Taylor Barton (ECOT-253)

Lectures: MWF 11:00 AM 11:50 AM, ECCR 150

Office hours: Mondays 5:00-6:00pm, and Thursdays 3:30-4:30, in ECOT 253


Important dates to remember:


Midterm I: February 28, in class

Midterm II: April 4, in class

Final: Tuesday May 8, details TBD


General Class Information:


Course Goals:

Understand how to approach analysis and design of circuits with nonlinear elements, including diodes, BJTs and MOSFETs, with an emphasis on design oriented analysis techniques.

Understand the principles of operation for pn junctions, semiconductor diodes, MOSFETs and BJTs, including intuition behind the physical meaning of device model parameters and limitations of models.

Understand how to analyze and design basic amplifier gain stages, operational amplifiers, and digital logic gates using MOSFETs and BJTs.



ECEN 2260, Circuits as Systems


Required textbook:

Microelectronic Circuits, 7th edition (2015), Sedra and Smith, Oxford University Press




Grading (preliminary)






Midterm I


Midterm II


Final Exam



The lowest quiz grade and lowest homework grade will be automatically dropped.

For more details and course and instructor policies, see the syllabus.



Tentative Schedule

Dates are tentative and are subject to change. Please check regularly.




Jan 15 

Martin Luther King Day

Jan 17 

Course introduction & overview


Jan 19

The ideal diode & example circuits (Sect. 4.1)

HW0 out

Jan 22

Terminal characteristics of diodes (Sect. 4.2)

Jan 24

Diode models and analysis techniques (Sect. 4.3)

Jan 26

Small signal modeling (Sect. 4.3)

HW0 due, HW1 out

Jan 29

Reverse breakdown & Zener diodes (Sect. 4.4)

Jan 31

Rectifiers (Sect. 4.5)

Quiz 0

Feb 2

Rectifiers (Sect. 4.5); Limiting and clamping circuits (Sect. 4.6)

HW1 due, HW2 out

Feb 5

Physical operation of diodes (Ch 3)

Feb 7

Physical operation of diodes (Ch 3)

Quiz 1

Feb 9

Physical operation of diodes (Ch 3)

HW2 due, HW3 out

Feb 12

Physical operation of diodes (Ch 3)

Feb 14

Physical operation of diodes (Ch 3)

Quiz 2

Feb 16

Physical operation of diodes (Ch 3)

HW3 due, HW4 out

Feb 19

MOS Field Effect Transistor (Sect. 5.1)

Feb 21

NMOS DC solutions (Sect. 5.2-5.3)

Quiz 3

Feb 23

PMOS devices, operating regions, DC solutions (Sect. 5.2-5.3)

HW 4 due, HW 5 out

Feb 26

Review for Midterm I


Feb 28

Midterm I

March 2

CMOS DC solutions, NMOS amplifier, large signal analysis (Sect. 5.3 & 7.1)

March 5

Body effect (Sect. 5.4), Small signal analysis (Sect. 7.2.1)


March 7

Basic gain stages, CS, CD, CG (Sect. 7.2-7.5, only material on MOSFETS)


March 9

Basic gain stages and biasing examples (Sect. 7.3-7.5, only material on MOSFETS)

HW5 due, HW6 out

March 12

Biasing schemes (Sect. 7.4.1), current mirrors & current sources (Sect. 8.2.1-8.2.2)


March 14

Active load (Sect. 8.3)

Quiz 4

March 16

Two-stage amplifier, cascade amplifier (Sect. 8.5)

HW6 due, HW7 out

March 19

Frequency response, CS amplifier (Sect. 10.2-10.3, only material on MOSFETS)

March 21

Continue frequency response (Sect. 10.4)

Quiz 5

March 23

Continue frequency response (Sect. 10.5-10.6, only material on MOSFETS)

HW7 due

March 26

Spring Break

March 28

Spring Break

March 30

Spring Break


April 2

Review for Midterm II


April 4

Midterm II


April 6

BJT operating regions and characteristics (Sect. 6.1-6.2)

HW8 out

April 9

BJT DC solutions (Sect. 6.3), BJT amplifier, large signal analysis (Sect. 7.1)

April 11

BJT amplifier, small signal modeling (Sect. 7.2.2)

April 13

BJT amplifier, small signal modeling (Sect. 7.2.2)

HW8 due, HW9 out

April 16

BJT CE amplifier with biasing, BJT emitter follower, BJT and MOS comparison (Sect. 7.3-7.4)

April 18

BJT and BiCMOS transistor pairings, BJT and MOS comparison (Appendix G [on website], Sect. 8.2.3, 8.7)

Quiz 6

April 20

Differential pair (Sect. 9.1)

HW9 due, HW10 out

April 23

Operational amplifiers intro and review (Sect. 2.1-2.4, 2.6-2.7)


April 25

Op amp design (Sect. 13.1-13.2)

Quiz 7

April 27

Op amp design, LM741 (Sect. 13.3-13.4)

HW10 due

April 30

CMOS and BJT logic gates (Sect. 14.1 - 14.4)


May 2

Continue CMOS and BJT logic gates (Sect. 14.1 - 14.4) , Transistor sizing (Sect. 14.5)

Quiz 8



Final:Tuesday. May 8, 7:30 10:00 pm, TBA