Artifact Details


Kroemer patent notebook (#490)

Catalog Number





This volume contains experimental data on compound semiconductor materials such as gallium arsenide (GaAs), including Gunn effect diodes, for applications in high frequency delay lines, oscillators and amplifiers. Also includes commentary on computer programs used for device simulation. His was one of the first Fairchild patent notebooks to include a copy of a computer program printout (p. 15) where he highlights an error in his program listing with the comment “What a blooper!”




Kroemer, Herbert

Biographical Notes

Herbert Kroemer was born in 1928 in Weimar, Germany, and received a Ph.D. in theoretical physics in 1952 from the University of Göttingen. He joined RCA Laboratories in Princeton, New Jersey, in 1954 where he established fundamental design principles for bipolar heterostructure transistors. From 1959 to 1966 his work with Varian Associates, located in Palo Alto, California, yielded the invention of the double heterostructure laser and his seminal paper on the topic that earned him the Nobel Prize in Physics for its contributions to optical communications. He also worked on microwave devices and in 1964 was the first to publish an explanation of the Gunn Effect. He joined Fairchild in 1966 as head of the New Phenomena section in the Solid State Physics Department led by C. Bittmann to work on non-silicon-based (GaAs, etc.) semiconductor devices. He joined the Department of Electrical Engineering, University of Colorado, Boulder in May 1968 and the faculty of U.C. Santa Barbara in 1976. In 2000, together with Zhores I. Alferov, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics "for developing semiconductor heterostructures used in high-speed and optoelectronics."


Fairchild Semiconductor

Identifying Numbers

Document number 490


Approximately 19 dated entries over 58 pages.


12 x 10 inches


The author is named as inventor on 12 U.S. patents, including 3 patents assigned to Fairchild:

U.S. patent 3516019, “Transverse negative mobility devices.” Filed 1968-09-06. 1970-06-02. This patent is based on entry on page 18 “On the Effective Mass of Holes in Gallium Antimonide,” that is dated 1966-03-31.

U.S. patent 3571759, “Transverse negative mobility devices.” Filed 1966-09-06. Issued 1971-03-23. This has the same name and is based on the work noted for patent 3516019 (above) but this time Kroemer is listed as the sole inventor.

U.S. patent 3526505, “Holographic method of forming and aligning patterns on a photosensitive workpiece.” Filed 1967-11-06. Issued 1967-11-06.

While still employed by Fairchild, in 1967-09, together with William Lehrer he filed for U.S. patent 3488542 “Light Emitting Heterojunction Semiconductor Devices” that was assigned to the inventors.



Collection Title

Fairchild Semiconductor notebooks and technical papers


The author published numerous scientific papers during his career including the following R&D Technical Reports (TR) and a conference paper derived from them during his service at Fairchild:

TR 283 Detailed theory of the negative conductance of bulk negative mobility amplifiers, in the limit of zero ion density (1967-02-10).

TR 320 Transverse negative differential mobilities for hot electrons and domain formation in germanium (1968-01-11).

Kroemer, H. Detailed theory of the negative conductance of bulk negative mobility amplifiers, in the limit of zero ion density. IEEE Transactions on Electron Devices, vol. 14, iss. 9 (1967): 476-492.


Gift of Texas Instruments Incorporated

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