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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/D506638/1
Title: PLATFORM GRANT RENEWAL: Nanoscale Multifunctional Ferroic Materials and Devices
Principal Investigator: Nicholls, Professor JR
Other Investigators:
Dorey, Professor RA Dunn, Professor SC Impey, Dr SA
Allen, Professor D Whatmore, Professor RW Kirby, Dr PB
Ramsden, Professor J
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Dr Z Huang Dr Q Zhang
Project Partners:
Department: Sch of Industrial and Manufacturing Scie
Organisation: Cranfield University
Scheme: Platform Grants (Pre-FEC)
Starts: 01 June 2006 Ends: 31 May 2011 Value (£): 426,657
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Materials Characterisation Materials Processing
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Electronics
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
This Platform Grant renewal is about conducting research into new nanostructured materials and devices in which multi-functionality, particularly coupled with ferroic behaviour, provide the key themes. Thin film ferroelectric materials, which have been an essential part of the research under this Platform Grant for the past 3 years, provide an important set of basic properties, including: a ferroelectric polarisation that can be switched, piezoelectricity (the generation of charge under stress), pyroelectricity (the generation of charge due to temperature change) and several others. These properties are now widely used in electronic devices and ferroelectric thin films are starting to be exploited commercially. An intriguing area for further study is the way in which these basic properties can be coupled to those of other materials, especially ferromagnets and semiconductors, to achieve entirely new sets of properties that can potentially be used in device applications. Some of the possibilities have been touched-on in the existing Grant (magnetoelectricity, for example) and it is clear that there is great potential for further work. It is hoped that the research will produce new materials and structures in which, for example, the optical emission from semiconductor nanoparticles can be controlled by switching the polarisation of a closely-coupled ferroelectric material or the way in which biological particles such as viruses deposit on a surface can be controlled by switching the polarisation in an underlying ferroelectric layer. It is the researchers intention to also explore how these new concepts in multifunctional ferroic materials can be potentially engineered into useful device structures.
Key Findings
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Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.cranfield.ac.uk