University of Puerto Rico†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† †††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Date: 8/20/2018

Rio Piedras Campus

Faculty of Natural Sciences

Department of Physics


Research Seminar: Electronic structure and transport

PHYS 6995-072


Instructor: †††††† Prof. Julian Velev

Office: ††††††††††††† Natural Sciences II, C-346

Phone:††††††††††††† (787) 764-0000 ext. 88484

E-mail: ††††††††††††


Class credits:†† 3 credits

Class period:††† 3 hours per week by arrangement

Location:††††††††† C-346

Office hours:†† Tuesday & Thursday, 13:00-14:00


Course objective: The goal of the course is that the student becomes familiar with a research topic/project and develop proficiency in the research methodology. The research performed by the student is expected to contribute towards the terminal degree.


Course description: This purpose of the seminar is to introduce the students to the modern methods for the calculation of the electronic structure of molecules and solids, in particular, first-principles methods based on density functional theory. In addition, the students will learn about the formalism to calculate charge and spin current through nanoscale devices. They will be introduced to scientific computation and remote computing.


Prerequisites: The students must show excellent understanding of the core Physics curriculum, in particular, Quantum Mechanics and Condensed Matter Physics. The students must also be proficient in computer programing.


Bibliography: Research papers which vary depending on the project.


Teaching methods: This is a research course. The research is performed by the student independently under the supervision of the advisor.


Grading: The grading will be based on the successful completion of the assigned research project. The grading system is as follows PS, PN, PB, NP.





Class schedule:




A research project is outlined in a discussion with the student. Reading is assigned.


The student is expected to study the literature and master the methodology required for the completion of the project. After the initial familiarization with the project the student is assigned task to carry out towards to completion of the project.


The student performs the tasks to complete the project objectives. The student reports weekly on his/her progress. The results are discussed and further reading and tasks are assigned. If necessary additional meetings can be arranged with the student. After the second four-week period preliminary results are assessed.


The preliminary results are discussed and further areas of improvement and further development are outlined.


At the end of the semester it is expected that the student has completed the research assignment and has demonstrated understanding of the research methodology and familiarity with the research topic.

A final presentation is prepared and given summarizing the results of the research.


Resources: Access to research journal is make available to the student through the UPR library system ( The necessary computing resources are available to the student through the UPR High Performance Computing facility (


Special provisions: The student should perform the research at his/her own schedule. The student should attend the meetings with the supervisor and inform him of the project progress on weekly basis. If circumstances require it some of the research work can be shifted from one period to the next on the studentís discretion provided that the project objectives are accomplished.


Academic integrity: The University of Puerto Rico promotes the highest standards of academic and scientific integrity. Article 6.2 of the UPR Students General Bylaws (Board of Trustees Certification 13, 2009-2010) states that academic dishonesty includes, but is not limited to: fraudulent actions; obtaining grades or academic degrees by false or fraudulent simulations; copying the whole or part of the academic work of another person; plagiarizing totally or partially the work of another person; etc. Any of these behaviors will be subject to disciplinary action in accordance with the disciplinary procedure laid down in the UPR Students General Bylaws.