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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/C511743/1
Title: Portfolio Partnership on Modelling of Transport and Dynamics in Mesoscale Systems
Principal Investigator: Lambert, Professor C
Other Investigators:
Falko, Professor V Tucker, Professor RW
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Dr S Bailey Dr E McCann
Project Partners:
QinetiQ ST Microelectronics
Department: Physics
Organisation: Lancaster University
Scheme: Portfolio Partnerships PreFEC
Starts: 01 October 2004 Ends: 31 March 2010 Value (£): 1,143,829
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Condensed Matter Physics Materials Characterisation
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Electronics
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
The proposed Portfolio Partnership in theoretical physics aims to deliver new knowledge needed to realize the immense potential of recent developments in nano- and meso-scale dynamics. Nanoscience involves the control of matter atom-byatom, molecule-by-molecule and nanocluster by nanocluster to yield new materials, which can be integrated into larger scale components and architectures. Nanoscience and the emergence of novel micro- and nano-technologies require new theories of dynamical electronic, magnetic and mechanical properties of systems, which didn't exist a few years ago. The proposed Portfolio Partnership will explore the basic science of meso- and nano-scale solid-state electronic and magnetic devices and develop theoretical methods for the flexible modelling of complex meso-scale systems. These include objects with dimensions less than the relevant correlation length (e.g., superconducting correlation and phase-coherence, spin and energy relaxation lengths), whose properties cannot be simply scaled down from macroscopic material parameters, or systems whose dynamics are dominated by non-classical effects such as the Casimir force.On the one hand, MEMS are devices that integrate electronic and micro-mechanical structures with micron dimension feature sizes. The small scale of these devices offers radical improvements in performance and cost with the inherent mechanical properties of silicon providing robustness and integration with electronic interfaces. Developing a fast-route approach to the modelling and characterisation of the (nonlinear) dynamical behaviour of MEMS will enable significant progress to be made on incorporating important physical conditions and non-trivial geometrical configurations into popular behavioural modelling languages such as VHDL-AMS and CAD tools. Furthermore, the integration of MEMS dynamics under fault and degradation conditions and non-idealities introduced during the processing of the device will be under much more control. On the other hand, controlled electron transport through carbon nanotubes and single molecules will create new paradigms in quantum information processing and a range of possibilities for ultra-sensitive quantum sensors. It will open the floodgates to many new experiments involving quantum physics, not least because the small scale of molecular-electronic devices means that quantum effects would be observable at room temperature. Molecular electronics is a more speculative research area than solid-state nanoelectronics, but if realised, will provide ultra-dense, low power, low-cost circuits, which are a long-term alternative for continuing Moore's Law down to the nanometer scale.
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Organisation Website: http://www.lancs.ac.uk