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Investigation of nanostructured materials, with emphasis on the controlled fabrication and synthesis of novel structures, manipulating and probing their surface and interface properties, and exploring potential applications. Implementation of a multidisciplinary approach, interfacing chemistry, materials science, physics and biology.
Materials for information technology, in particular spintronics (spin-based electronics). Traditional semi-conductor devices rely on the transport and storage of electronic charge. Spintronics exploits electron spin, creating a new class of devices that can potentially be scaled down to nano-dimensions and can also provide additional functionality. Research goals include: 1) thin film growth utilizing a variety of deposition techniques, including chemical vapor deposition, pulsed laser deposition and sputtering; 2) utilization of a combinatorial approach for depositing and characterizing these films where possible to enable rapid screening of a wide variety of materials; 3) synthesis and characteriza-tion of novel magnetic thin films and heterostructures, in particular oxides, with atomic layer control of the interfaces; 4) fabrication of devices, such as magnetic tunnel junctions and spin-based semiconductors, using these materials for storage, memory and logic functions.
Nanostructured materials for biomedical applications, with emphasis on magnetic oxides. Magnetic nanoparticles represent an extremely interesting group of inorganic materials having a close connection to living systems. They offer exciting possibilities for use in the detection, manipulation and functional control of biomolecules and cells, with potential medical applications in areas such as targeted drug delivery, magnetic fluid hyperthermia and contrast imaging. Research goals emphasize the development of: 1) novel synthetic strategies for the production of various shape nanostructures, including particles, wires, tubes or ribbons; 2) subsequent modification of their surface with coatings to render them biocompatible and enable selective surface immobilization of bioactive molecules.
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