B.Sc./M.Sc. Theses and Research Projects (Uni Stuttgart students only):
During a thesis or research project, you will carry out physical measurements using a variety of spectroscopic, magnetometric, or transport methods, mostly on paramagnetic systems. You will then evaluate and analyze the obtained data. Additionally, your project may contain elements of synthesis and characterization, as well as of theory and modelling, depending on your preferences.
For further information, talk to any group member, or contact Prof. Joris van Slageren directly.
Please scroll down for a non-exclusive list of potential topics.
If you are interested, please fill in the form below so we can find the best topic available for you.
Expression of Interest Form
Supervisor: Jake McGuire
Goal: Investigation of spin-electric coupling in highly-tunable molecular spin qubit architectures. The influence of spin-state, spin-orbit coupling, and delocalization and symmetry on spin-electric coupling.
- Electrochemistry (cyclic voltammetry and EIS)
- Cw X-band EPR Spectroscopy
- Cw spin-electric X-band EPR Spectroscopy
- Pulsed Q-band EPR
- Electronic Spectroscopy
Molecular quantum bits (MQBs) are promising candidates as the hardware of a quantum computer. As these devices are being physically realized with super-conducting bits or nitrogen-centered vacancies in diamond, the addressability of the quantum bits (qubits) poses a severe bottleneck, that is, the ability to write and read data to these qubits. Magnetic fields are intrinsically difficult to control and change in the precise regime required for operation of a quantum computer is incredibly limiting with current technology. In contrast, electric field generation and control is trivial. Paramagnetic molecules, with specific geometries among other conditions, can couple with electric fields, dubbed spin-electric coupling. However, this effect is conventionally quite weak. Using the high tunability of molecular systems we look to develop design principles to maximize spin-electric coupling, while preserving the properties required for MQBs; long coherence times.
It is known that spin-electric coupling is operative locally in paramagnetic molecules without inversion centers. N2S2 tetradentate fused bis(aminothiolate)s have been known since the 60s and exhibit coordination to a wide range of metals. They can, in some cases, undergo reduction to form radical ligands. A slight caveat is that their tunability has not been fully explored. In-group, some methodology has been developed towards customizing these to fully capitalize on this system.
Known transition metal complexes, such as those in figures 1 (Examples of fused bis(aminothiolate) complexes with varied symmetry and, therefore, electron distribution where M is Ni, Pd, or Pt) and 2 (A series of S,S′-ethyl-N,N′-benzyl-bis(benzeneaminothiolate) (ebbbat) complexes with varying spin state. [Cu(ebbbat)Cl2], [Cr(ebbbat)Cl2], and [Mn(ebbbat)Cl2] with S = 1/2, 3/2, and 5/2 respectively), form convenient series to explore the influence of spin-orbit coupling or spin state. With these we look to fully investigate and characterize the magnetic and electronic properties of these complexes and further develop experimental methodology to investigate spin-electric coupling, which at present consists of connection of the sample between two electrodes and sweeping the field.
This project has wide scope and can be tailored to the interests of the student, whether that be measurement, synthesis, simulation, or development.
Supervisor: Radhika Kataria
Goal: Preparation and characterization of hybrid thin films of a semiconducting polymer and a molecular quantum bit as a platform for molecular spintronics.
- Film preparation using spin-coating or drop-casting techniques
- Topographic and optical characterization using atomic force microscopy (AFM) and UV-Vis spectroscopy
- Organic Field-Effect Transistor (OFET) measurements for investigating the charge transport properties
- Continuous wave and pulsed Electron Spin Resonance (ESR) Spectroscopy for probing the static and dynamic spin properties
A quantum bit or a qubit forms the basic unit of almost all quantum technologies. Molecular qubits (MQBs), which are qubits based on electron spins in paramagnetic molecules, are interesting because of their chemical tunability and long coherence times. Integrating these qubits with semiconducting polymers provides a novel platform to access and exploit the spin information via electrical means. This approach can provide increased spin detection sensitivity and facile integration with electronic devices.
This bachelor’s/master’s thesis or research internship aims to introduce the student to the interdisciplinary and emerging fields of organic and molecular spintronics. The research will focus on depositing thin films of a semiconducting polymer and a molecular qubit on silicon or plastic substrates. These will then be characterized for their electrical and magnetic properties using spectroscopic and charge transport measurements. Emphasis will be on the optimization of parameters such as temperature and qubit concentration to retain the desired charge-transport and spin properties of the hybrid films.
Specific goals and tasks can be decided based on the interests of the student and the research level (B.Sc./FP/M.Sc.) and the duration of the project. For those interested, a component of synthesis could also be included.
Supervisor: Lorenzo Tesi
Goal: Determine the influence of plasmonic structures on the resulting HF-EPR spectra for different magnetic samples.
- Sample preparation includes spin-coating or dropcast approaches;
- Magnetic characterization of several different molecular systems by cw-EPR, HF-EPR and THz transmission measurements;
- Data analysis with Python, Origin or Matlab;
- Electromagnetic fields modelling with CST Studio software.
The development of resonators for HF-EPR is limited by the EPR extreme frequency range used (sub-THz up to 1 THz). The structures we are designing increase the sensitivity of HFEPR technique, thus facilitating a wide range of applications. This is an innovative project that merges the research areas of plasmonics, metamaterials, THz frequencies and EPR. First results have confirmed what modelled by numerical simulations and now a broader investigation must be carried out on several new designed micro-antennas. It is a very interdisciplinary topic, for which chemists, physicist, engineers, and material sciences students are welcome.
Several types of studies can be performed depending on the interest of the student. The project can be more focused on the design and simulation or vice versa on the experimental side. A 50/50 mix of calculations and experiments can be carried out only within master thesis. A research line of this project also involves graphene-based structures and can be chosen for the thesis work.
Supervisor: Lorenzo Tesi
Goal: Determine the best parameters and procedures to obtain a homogenous thin layer of magnetic molecules diluted in a polymeric matrix.
- Sample preparation by spin-coating with different conditions;
- Characterization by Optical Microscope, Atomic Force Microscopy, Profilometry;
- Data analysis with Python, Origin or Matlab;
- Applications with further techniques can occur depending on the specific project.
Background: Spin-coating is one of the best techniques existing for the fabrication of thin layers of polymeric species and is widely applied in academic as well as industry. Several parameters can be changed providing very different results (static or dynamic method, speed rate, acceleration, drop volume, concentration of the solution, etc.). Serious difficulties can occur when the substrate is small or has not-squared shapes, limiting spin-coating applications in many research areas.
Tasks: A systematic study must be carried out in order to define the influence of the various parameters on the thin layer fabrication. All the possibilities should be investigated to identify the best protocol. Several magnetic molecules, as well as polymers and substrates will be used. Depending on the specific project further applications can represent an additional minor part of the work.
PhD and Post-Doc Positions
Do you need to be a genius to work in the molecular nanomagnetism group? Well, it doesn't hurt, of course, but it is not necessary. What is required and what will be expected of you if you work in the group are the following: initiative, critical thought, and perseverance. Perhaps the most important quality you should have is scientific curiosity. Please don't hesitate to contact us about a position before applying. PhD positions are for 3-4 years, Post-Doc positions for the time indicated. What we offer:
- Access to state of the art spectrometers and magnetometers.
- The opportunity to tackle exciting contemporary challenges in science.
- A stimulating international environment with outstanding facilities and support.
- Ample funding, and possibilities to visit laboratories and conferences abroad.
Any job application requires the following:
- A curriculum vitae, including thesis subjects, names and contact data of two academic referees, and publication list.
- A motivation of interest: Why are you applying?
- To apply for a PhD position you should have a good first degree and you should include a list of courses including grades.
- PhD positions.Currently, we have no open PhD positions.
- Post-Doc recruitment. We are looking for candidates interested in applying for Alexander von Humboldt (no deadline), Georg Forster (no deadline), DFG Walter Benjamin (no deadline) or Marie‐Skłodowska‐Curie (deadline September) postdoc fellowships for example in the areas of experimental spin-phonon coupling, thin layers of molecular quantum bits, electrical addressing of molecular quantum bits and switchable two-qubit systems. Click here for more information.
- Junior Research Group hosting. We are interested in hosting a scientifically independent Junior Research Group that would be able to profit from the research infrastructure available. Funding possibilities include ERC StG/CoG (deadline March), DFG Emmy Noether (no deadline), BW MWK Margarethe von Wrangell (deadline September). Click here for more information.
Joris van SlagerenProf. Dr.
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