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Laser Driven Magnetism in Organic Semiconductors

Project Description

In a recent preliminary study aiming to grow crystals of the pi-conjugated molecule coronene we have observed an unexpected and new phenomenon. Coronene grown in a magnetic field exhibits a previously unknown crystalline structure when compared to the known structures prepared in the absence of field (arXiv:1509.04120). Coronene and other aromatic molecules such fullerenes are known to develop ring currents if in magnetic fields.
Ring currents are a unique phenomenon which attracted the
interests of many chemists and physicists trying to understand the structure of organic aromatic compounds. One of the most spectacular manifestations of ring currents are the shielding of nuclear proton spins in NMR spectroscopy. Recently, a theoretical proposal about inducing ring currents with circularly polarized laser pulses triggered a large interest (JACS 128, 7043). This is because short laser pulses can generate ring currents orders of magnitude higher than those achieved with the most common laboratory magnetic fields.
In this PhD thesis we will induce ring currents with femtosecond laser pulses in order to induce transient magnetism in molecular solids made of coronene and fullerenes. This will open up possibilities for new ways of assembling molecules in crystals and observe new undiscovered properties. In addition, this exciting project aims to demonstrate the control of transient magnetism by using laser light.

There will be the possibility for the student to attend some of the lectures from the Condensed Matter Physics CDT funded by EPSRC and interact with students enrolled in that programme.
In addition, there will be graduate lectures from the Nanoscience and Photonics Groups at University of Bath.
The experimental and computational facilities to perform the research described above are already present in the laboratory of Da Como, or through departmental services with the centres MAS and CCAF.

Funding Notes

We welcome all year-round applications from self-funded candidates and candidates who can source their own funding.

How good is research at University of Bath in Physics?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 23.00

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

Click here to see the results for all UK universities

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