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    nanoscience and nanotechnology: small is different


2023. Pierre Pantaleón, Hector Sainz, Adrian Ceferino, Alejandro Jimeno, Francisco Guinea, Zhen Zhan, Long Ming and Guillermo Parra

The main goal of the research within the group is the development of models which describe the properties of novel two dimensional materials. The best known case is graphene, which permits the fabrication of films of widths comparable to the radius of a single atom. After the synthesis of graphene, many other two dimensional materials have been fabricated, with a broad range of properties.  Finally, layers of different materials can be combined, leading to “metamaterials” with pre-designed features.

The models studied and developed in the group emphasize those properties which are unique to these materials, and they include geometrical and structural features, electronic and superconducting properties and magnetic phases. The group also considers devices based on these materials, highlighting those with functionalities which cannot be achieved in devices fabricated using other materials. The research being carried out is expected to be useful for descriptions of these materials at the atomic scale, and also in samples of sizes much larger than the separation between atoms. A wide variety of techniques in theoretical physics are applied, from numerical calculations to the use of topological arguments, or methods based on the renormalization group.

The models developed in the group are checked against experimental results, and they contribute to their interpretation. A significant fraction of the research done by the group is carried out in collaboration with experimental teams within the IMDEA institutes and around the world.