Nanotechnology Now







Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > ERC Grant for spintronics: Spinning electrons as information carriers

Abstract:
Electrons spin around their own axis, a property that could form the basis of futuristic high-speed, low-cost electronics. Researcher Michel de Jong of the NanoElectronics group (MESA+) plans to base these "spintronics" on organic materials. He has obtained a Starting Grant of €1.5 million from the European Research Council to fund this work.

ERC Grant for spintronics: Spinning electrons as information carriers

The Netherlands | Posted on January 20th, 2012

This is the second major ERC Grant to be awarded to Prof. Wilfred van der Wiel's group. The professor himself obtained a similar European grant in 2009. So this area of research seems to be attracting considerable attention. This new approach may represent a decisive step towards the next generation of electronic components, which will be more compact, faster, and cheaper.

The beauty of an electron's spin is that it responds very rapidly to small magnetic fields. Such external magnetic fields can be used to reverse the direction of spin. In this way, information can be carried by a flow of electrons. For instance, electrons with a left-hand spin could represent a "1", and those with a right-hand spin, a "0". It takes less time to flip the spin direction than it does to switch a current on or off. Accordingly, spintronics could potentially be very fast and extremely compact.

Organic materials

However, this would require a material that combines the characteristics of a semiconductor (such as silicon, the most widely used material in the chip industry) with magnetic properties. Research in this area (including work by Michel de Jong) has already delivered results. However, finding materials with this combination of properties is far from simple. For this reason, Michel de Jong is now hunting for an alternative. He is focusing on semiconductors consisting of carbohydrate chains, in other words, organic materials. "Such materials are already being used in the displays of the latest smart phones. Indeed, they are very much the 'in' thing. I expect it will ultimately be possible to make very cheap electronics from these materials, leading to a wide range of new applications. For instance, if supermarkets want to tag their products with pricing information, then the electronics involved will have to cost next to nothing."

Buckyballs

De Jong has been experimenting with buckyballs (spherical C60 molecules held together by weak bonds) sandwiched between two magnetic materials. "The great advantage of these molecules is that they have very little effect on electron spin. This enables them to store spin information for much longer periods of time than silicon." Depending on the orientation of the magnetic field in the upper and lower layers of magnetic material, electrons with the same direction of spin are either allowed through or held back, as if a valve were being opened or closed. This would make it possible to create sensitive magnetic sensors, for example. The "sandwich" might also form the basis for new electronic components that make use of spin.

"If we are to make truly effective components, we will need a detailed understanding of events at the interface between the magnetic and organic materials. However, this will require improvements in the quality of such interfaces. The current techniques for applying metallic layers to organic layers do not produce good interconnections. The organic material contains cavities that can fill with metal. This results in unpredictable behaviour. Over the next five years we will be seeking to improve the manufacturing process. This will help us to understand what exactly happens at the interface. I propose to use part of the ERC Grant for this purpose. It will enable me to take on two PhD students and a postdoctoral researcher."

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Wiebe van der Veen
tel. +31-(0)53-4894244

Copyright © University of Twente

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Solving molybdenum disulfide's 'thin' problem: Research team increases material's light emission by twelve times March 29th, 2015

A first glimpse inside a macroscopic quantum state March 28th, 2015

DFG to Establish One Clinical Research Unit and Five Research Units: New Projects to Investigate Complications in Pregnancy, Particle Physics, Nanoparticles, Implants and Transport Planning / Approximately 13 Million Euros in Funding for an Initial Three-Year Period March 28th, 2015

UT Dallas engineers twist nanofibers to create structures tougher than bulletproof vests March 27th, 2015

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

UT Dallas engineers twist nanofibers to create structures tougher than bulletproof vests March 27th, 2015

Novel nanoparticle therapy promotes wound healing March 27th, 2015

Designer's toolkit for dynamic DNA nanomachines: Arm-waving nanorobot signals new flexibility in DNA origami March 27th, 2015

Using magnetic fields to understand high-temperature superconductivity: Los Alamos explores experimental path to potential 'next theory of superconductivity' March 27th, 2015

Spintronics

Magnetic vortices in nanodisks reveal information: Researchers from Dresden and Jülich use microwaves to read out information from smallest storage devices March 4th, 2015

Insight into inner magnetic layers: Measurements at BESSY II have shown how spin filters forming within magnetic sandwiches influence tunnel magnetoresistance -- results that can help in designing spintronic component- February 17th, 2015

A new spin on spintronics: Michigan team tests radiation-resistant spintronic material, possibly enabling electronic devices that will work in harsh environments February 17th, 2015

Nanoscale Mirrored Cavities Amplify, Connect Quantum Memories: Advance could lead to quantum computing and the secure transfer of information over long-distance fiber optic networks January 28th, 2015

Nanotubes/Buckyballs

Carbon nanotube fibers make superior links to brain: Rice University invention provides two-way communication with neurons March 25th, 2015

Iranian Scientists Eliminate Expensive Materials from Diabetes Diagnosis Sensors March 25th, 2015

Effect of Carbon Nanotubes on Properties of Cement Composites Studied in Iran March 23rd, 2015

First proof of isolated attosecond pulse generation at the carbon K-edge March 20th, 2015

Announcements

Solving molybdenum disulfide's 'thin' problem: Research team increases material's light emission by twelve times March 29th, 2015

A first glimpse inside a macroscopic quantum state March 28th, 2015

DFG to Establish One Clinical Research Unit and Five Research Units: New Projects to Investigate Complications in Pregnancy, Particle Physics, Nanoparticles, Implants and Transport Planning / Approximately 13 Million Euros in Funding for an Initial Three-Year Period March 28th, 2015

Using magnetic fields to understand high-temperature superconductivity: Los Alamos explores experimental path to potential 'next theory of superconductivity' March 27th, 2015

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More










ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







© Copyright 1999-2015 7th Wave, Inc. All Rights Reserved PRIVACY POLICY :: CONTACT US :: STATS :: SITE MAP :: ADVERTISE