University of Leeds (Multi-disciplined applied and model-based nanoscience)

University of Leeds (Multi-disciplined applied and model-based nanoscience)
Type Disciplines
Private University Nanotubes Nanoparticles Nanomaterials
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University of Leeds
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The University of Leeds (Yorkshire, United Kingdom) houses the Centre for Nano-Device Modeling and the NanoManufacturing Institute. The University conducts research in nano-related mathematics, modeling, materials, optics and elcetronics.

University of Leeds carries out nanosciemce research at many individual departments: The Department of Applied Mathematics, the School of Electronic and Electrical Engineering, the Department of Physics and Astronomy, and the Centre for Self-Organising Molecular Systems.

Nanotechnology research includes the mathematical and numerical modelling of MESFETs and HEMTs (Applied Mathematics), transport in amorphous Si and other disordered materials (Physics and Astronomy), applying discotic liquid crystals to electronic and optical devices (SOMS), and FET and HBT modelling, and quantum well lasers (Electronic and Electrical Engineering).

New joint pano-research projects are being formulated by these groups as follows:

The NanoManufactruing Institute
To create Europe’s leading centre for nanomanufacturing research focussed on consumer and related products drawing upon the University of Leeds’ substantial science and engineering base in nanoscale science and process engineering. The NMi's target is to establish new research projects drawing on the University’s science that focuses on the issues of scale-up and manufacturability of nano-enabled products.  To accomplish its goals, the NMi works closely with all of the academic departments within the University of Leeds and draws on the strengths of its core staff and the members of the various management committees. NMi draws upon the University of Leeds’ substantial nanoscale science and engineering research base, the NMi is developing and leading research projects that focus upon the issues of scale-up and efficient manufacturing of nano-enabled products.


Mathematical Physics and Applied Analysis
Quantum Discrete Systems and Integrability.  The theory of integrable discrete systems also extends into the quantum domain, and it is here that the true richness of integrability is most visible (quantum mechanics being in essence a theory of discrete and algebraic objects). The current research concentrates on formulating a proper quantum theory for discrete mappings and integrable systems living on the space-time lattice. Exploiting the exactness of the models and integrable structures (R-matrices, quantum Lax pairs and determinants) the investigation is set to produce rigorous and analytic answers to questions which for other models are only accessible through numerical and perturbative methods. As such, quantum integrable discrete models form a paradigm for the development of new approaches in the quantum regime which have potential implications to areas such as string and conformal field theory, as well as in the theory of random matrices in mesoscopic physics, quantum computing and nanotechnology.

Institute of Microwaves and Photonics
The research activities of the Institute of Microwaves and Photonics (IMP) are much wider than might be assumed from the Institute’s name. The Institute has two broad research themes. The first theme is concerned with the generation, detection and exploitation of radiation from the millimetre/microwave region of the electromagnetic spectrum, through the terahertz range, and to the mid-infrared and beyond. The second theme is concerned with the design, fabrication and measurement of electronic and photonic nanostructured devices, and even involves the exploitation of biological processes for directed nanoassembly, inter alia. The school operates a £2.5M state-of-the-art class 100 cleanroom offering photo-, electron-, and focused ion-beam lithography, and has an extensive microwave and high-frequency electronics infrastructure.  For bioelectronics research a molecular suite of nanoelectronics laboratories including confocal microscopy and AFM imaging is available, funded though a Royal Society/Wolfson laboratory refurbishment award.

Molecular Beam Epitaxy Facility Research
Molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) is a flexible technique for the growth of layered compound semiconductor structures of extremely high purity and with atomic-scale resolution of composition and doping in the growth direction. The optical and electronic properties of the constituent semiconductors are combined to provide new structures tailored to the specific application. This technique has been central to a number of electronic, optoelectronic, and nanotechnology developments over the last twenty years, including the growth and development of mid- and far-infrared (terahertz) quantum cascade lasers together with the fabrication of advanced materials such as low-temperature GaAs and related compounds, used for optical mixers and electro-optic switches. Our new £1M Oxford Instruments V80H III-V MBE machine and facility gives us a competitive advantage over the next ten years in the fields of condensed matter physics, terahertz electronics and photonics, optoelectronics, semiconductor materials, semiconductor device engineering, photonics, and nanotechnology.

The Condensed Matter Group
The Condensed Matter Group studies the structural, electrical, and magnetic properties of metals, semiconductors and superconductors. Magnetism is a strong theme to the research and there is a focus on Spintronics and Magnetic Nanostructures. The study of low-dimensional or nanostructured magnetic systems and materials. We are investigating the fundamental physical properties of materials and heterostructures that will be used to develop spin electronic devices. The Leeds laboratory leads a number of UK and European research consortia in this field. The research portfolio in this area is currently worth over £2M.

Self Organizing Molecular Systems (SOMS) Centre
Research into Polymer Nanotechnology focuses on soft materials. The properties of these materials rely on the self-assembly of amphiphiles, colloids and polymers into a variety of mesophases, with nanoscale order of the constituent molecules. Nature also exploits self-organisation of soft materials in many ways, to produce such things as cell membranes, biopolymer fibres and viruses. Soft nanotechnology encompases the design of materials at the nanoscale, whether through atom-by-atom or molecule-by-molecule methods (top-down) or through self-organization (bottom-up).

One group focuses on self-assembling peptides. The research involves learning to control precisely peptide self-assembly can be a powerful way of constructing a wealth of nanostructured materials and devices with programmable combination of functionalities appropriate for specific applications.  The SOMS Centre has exploited the biological beta-sheet motif to design simple de novo peptides that self-assemble in one-dimension in a hierarchical manner to form a variety of well-defined twisted elongated nanostructures such as tapes (single molecule in thickness), ribbons (a pair of stacked tapes back to back), fibrils (a bundle of stacked ribbons) and fibres (a pair of fibrils interacting edge-to-edge).

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