David L. Pulfrey
Professor Emeritus
Electrical Engineering

B.Sc., Ph.D. (University of Manchester),
P.Eng. (British Columbia),
Fellow IEEE (for contributions to the modeling of heterojunction bipolar semiconductor devices),
Fellow Canadian Academy of Engineering (for contributions to teaching and research in microelectronics)

D.L. Pulfrey received the B.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering from the University of Manchester, England in 1965 and 1968, respectively. Since 1969 he has been on the faculty in the Electrical Engineering Department at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B.C., Canada. He retired in 2011, and is now Professor Emeritus.

He taught and researched in the area of semiconductor devices. He received awards for his teaching at the university-, provincial- and international-levels: inaugural winner of UBC's Teaching Prize for Engineering in 1990; the 2009 Teaching Award for Excellence in Engineering and Geoscience Education from the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of British Columbia; the 2009 Education Award from the IEEE Electron Devices Society. He received recognition for his research work by being made Fellow of IEEE (2000) and the Canadian Academy of Engineering (2002).

He has written 3 books: "Understanding Modern Transistors and Diodes" (2010); "Introduction to Microelectronic Devices" in 1989 with Garry Tarr; "Photovoltaic Power Generation" in 1979. He has written book chapters on heterojunction bipolar transistors for Wiley's Encyclopedia of Electrical and Electronic Engineering (1999) and for Roblin and Rohdin's "High-speed heterostructure devices" (2002).

He was the inaugural appointee to PMC-Sierra's in-house university, and gave courses there on "Deep sub-micron electronics" and also on "Nanoelectronics". He has given guest courses on "Modern semiconductor devices" at the Technical University of Vienna, and at the Universities of Pisa and Western Australia. He has been a Distinguished Lecturer of the IEEE Electron Devices Society, giving lectures on carbon nanotube transistors in Mexico City. Under the auspices of the Canadian International Development Agency he gave a course on "Photovotaics engineering" at the Institute of Engineering in Kathmandu.

He has published over 130 refereed articles on the topics of: electrical breakdown in thin dielectrics; the preparation and properties of plasma-anodized thin oxide films; the analysis and fabrication of surface junction solar cells; the modeling and reliability of high-gain polysilicon-emitter transistors; the analysis of silicon MIS tunnel junction structures and related devices; circuit techniques and algorithmic macrocell generation for CMOS VLSI; the compact modeling of bipolar heterostructures (supported by Nortel, Ottawa in the 1990's); the development of physical and predictive models for carbon nanotube devices, both as high-performance transistors and as biomolecular sensors.

He spent periods of study leave at: the University of Western Australia (working on solar cells and UV photodetectors); Plessey Research, England (working on high-gain bipolar transistors); Microtel Pacific Research, Vancouver (working on CMOS memory design); Laboratoire d'Automatique et d'Analyse des Systemes, Toulouse (working on AlGaAs/GaAs HBTs); UC Santa Barbara (working on AlGaN/GaN HBTs); Technical University of Vienna (working on carbon nanotube FETs).

He maintains an interest in the theoretical and practical aspects of solar cells and light-emitting diodes, two devices that are important for the electrical-energy sustainability of the planet.


[Teaching Awards]

[Research Interests]





[Recreational Interests]

[Contact Address]


Teaching Awards


Research Interests

    Semiconductor device modeling, usually with the goal of producing physics-based compact models for guiding device design and evaluation.
    Most recently, devices that have been studied are: carbon nanotube biosensors, CIGS and graphene solar cells, HBTs in the GaAs, InP and AlGaN material systems; UV photodetectors in AlGaN.

    PLEASE NOTE: My present mode of operation is consultative; my former research group, the
    UBC Nanoelectronics Group , is no longer active.

Publications List, Carbon Nanotube Reprints, and Selected Other Reprints

  1. D.L. Pulfrey, G. Parish, D. Wee, and B.D. Nener, ``Surface layer damage and responsivity in sputtered ITO/p-GaN Schottky barrier photodiodes'', Solid-State Electronics, vol. 49, 1969-1973, 2005.
  2. A.R. St.Denis and D.L. Pulfrey, ``Kinetic Approach to Quasi-Ballistic Field-Dependent Electron Transport'', Proc. 26th Intl. Conf. Physics of Semiconductors 2002, paper D36, IOP Publication 171, 2003.
  3. C.W. Fok and D.L. Pulfrey, ``Full-chip power-supply noise: the effect of on-chip power-rail inductance'', Int. J. High-speed Electronics and Systems'', vol. 12(2), 573-582, 2002.
  4. D.L. Pulfrey, ``Modeling High-Performance HBTs'', High-speed Semiconductor Devices, P. Roblin and H. Rohdin, Eds., New York: Cambridge University Press, chap.18, 2002.
  5. D.L. Pulfrey, ``Heterojunction Bipolar Transistor'', Wiley Encyclopedia of Electrical And Electronics Engineering, J.G. Webster, Ed., New York: John Wiley and Sons, Inc., vol.8, 690-706, 1999.
  6. D.L. Pulfrey, A.R. St.Denis and M. Vaidyanathan, ``Compact models for high -frequency bipolar transistors'', Proc. IEEE COMMAD, Australia, 81-85, 1998.

Selected Presentations







Taught courses mainly in semiconductor devices and semiconductor theory, e.g.,
EECE 480 , EECE 576 , EECE 577.


Contact Address: