Difference Between N type and P type Semiconductor | Quick Guide

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Here we will see the difference between N-type and P-type semiconductor. We also see the definition of p type and n type semiconductor. Let see,


As previous we What is semiconductor? and the types of semiconductor. There are mainly two types of semiconductor, we can divide into,

  • Intrinsic semiconductor
  • Extrinsic semiconductor

A semiconductor which is in extremely pure form is called intrinsic semiconductor.

A semiconductor which contains some impurities is called extrinsic semiconductor. After adding some impurities in the pure semiconductor, we can improve some properties of semiconductor material. The process of adding impurities is called doping.

The main purpose of doping is to add impurities in the semiconductor and increase the numbers of electrons or holes in the semiconductor material. Depending upon the added impurities, P-type and N-type semiconductor can be decided.

Key difference:

When Trivent impurities are added in the semiconductor, P-type semiconductor formed. And When pentavalent impurities are added in semiconductor, N-type semiconductor formed. The main difference between these P-type and N-type semiconductor is in terms of added impurities.

In a p-type semiconductor, the III group element of the periodic table is added as a doping element, whereas in n-type the V group element is the doping element. As an example, When trivalent impurities like Al, Ga etc. are added in Silicon, P-type semiconductor formed. When Pentavalent impurities like P, As, Sb, Bi are added in silicon, n-type semiconductor formed.

Difference between P-type and N-type semiconductor in Tabular Form

In Group of Doping Element In P-type semiconductor, III group element is added as doping element. In n-type semiconductor, V group element is added as doping element.
According to Nature of Doping Element in semiconductor The impurity added creates a vacancy of electrons (holes) So it is called as Acceptor Atom. The impurity added provides extra electrons and is known as Donor Atom.
Type of impurity added Trivalent impurity like Al, Ga, In etc. is added. Pentavalent impurity like P, As, Sb, Bi etc. are added.
Majority Carriers Here Holes are majority carriers Here Electrons are majority carriers
Minority Carriers Here Electrons are minority carriers Here Holes are minority carriers
A density of Electrons and Holes The hole density is much greater than the electron density.
nh >> ne
The electron density is much greater than the hole density.
ne >> nh
The energy level in the semiconductor The acceptor energy level is close to the valence band and away from the conduction band. The donor energy level is close to the conduction band and away from the valence band.
Fermi level Fermi level lies between acceptor energy level and the valence band. Fermi level lies between donor energy level and the conduction band.
Movement of Majority carriers Majority carriers move from higher to the lower potential. Majority carriers move from lower to the higher potential.

P-type and n-type semiconductor both are extrinsic semiconductors. We can define p-type and n-type semiconductor by their impurities added.

N-type semiconductor: When pentavalent impurity uses for doping then it creates extra electrons in a semiconductor called n-type semiconductor or donor. Examples of pentavalent impurities are phosphorus or arsenic which also called as donor impurities.

P-type semiconductor: When Trivalent impurity uses for doping then it creates some vacancy of electrons ( Holes) in semiconductor called P-type semiconductor or acceptor. Examples of trivalent impurities are aluminum, boron which also called as acceptor impurities.


hope now you know all the difference between P-type and N type semiconductor material. P-type semiconductor is formed by adding trivalent impurities and N-type semiconductor is formed by adding pentavalent impurities in the semiconductor. We can also refer to this as a difference between electron donor and acceptor. We saw the definition of p-type and n-type semiconductor. If you have any doubt related to this topic feel free to ask in the comment section.

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