University of Minnesota
Institute of Technology
myU OneStop

Doug Ernie 2013

Douglas Ernie
Associate Professor


Area of expertise: Plasma technology and applications.
Telecollaboration for education and research.

Ph.D., Physics, 1980, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, United States
M.S., Physics, 1975, University of Illinois, Chicago, IL, United States
B.S., Physics, 1973, University of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND, United States
B.S., Math, 1973, University of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND, United States

Contact information
Office: 6-155 Keller Hall
Telephone: (612) 625-9802
E-mail: ernie (at)

I am interested in the areas of gaseous electronics and plasma engineering relating to nonequilibrium dc, rf, and microwave discharges and their applications. A major part of my current research effort entails the theoretical and experimental investigation of rf discharge characteristics. The theoretical studies involve modeling various physical properties of the discharge including sheath structures, ion surface bombardment energy distributions, maintenance mechanisms, and the effects of radical species and negative ions. The experimental work complements these studies by utilizing optical and mass spectroscopy and ion energy diagnostics to characterize some of the rf discharge properties being modeled. These investigations are directed toward obtaining a better fundamental understanding of these discharges and their applications in surface modification and microelectronic device fabrication.

Another area of my research involves the theoretical and experimental study of particle distributions, particle flow patterns, and electric field profiles in dc discharges. This effort is of interest both for the basic understanding of the physics of dc discharges and for the application of these discharges to lasers and lightning.

Selected publications
Ernie, Douglas W., A. Metze, and H. J. Oskam. "The Energy Distribution of Ions Bombarding Electrode Surfaces in RF Plasma Reactors". Journal of Applied Physics, 65 (1989): 993.

Ernie, Douglas W., A. Metze, and H. J. Oskam. "The Radical Distributions of Charged Particle Densities and Electric Field Strength in the Positive Column". Physics Review A, 39 (1989): 4117.

Ernie, Douglas W., L. M. Ferreiro, and J. F. Evans. "Mass Spectrometric and Ion Energy Diagnostics in the Study of Plasma Etching and Polymerization". Journal of Vacuum Science and Technology, A5 (1987): 2280.