SMFD Projects

FUNLAYERS: Functional Layered Materials for Advanced Applications.

Funded by EU
Description: FUNLAYERS aims to leverage the interdisciplinary scientific excellence and innovation capacity of INL and strengthen partners’ research in the field of layered materials, capturing future opportunities for joint collaboration in R&I. Various strategic and measurable actions will be set up through seven WPs to create at INL a thriving and sustainable research environment and to decrease networking gaps between INL and leading international counterparts.'

GraSynD: Atomically Precise Graphene Nanoribbons: Synthesis and Device Integration

Funded by: MPG Headquarter, Max Planck Innovation
Description: Graphene nanoribbons (GNRs) are quasi-1D graphene strips that are emerging as promising candidates for the next generation of carbon-based nanoelectronic devices. Since the electronic properties of GNRs sensitively depend on their chemical structures, especially the width and edge topology, the preparation of GNRs with chemically defined structures is of critical importance for both a fundamental understanding of the physics at the atomic scale and the subsequent implementation of high-quality materials in electronic devices. Top-down approaches to fabricate GNRs – like electron-beam lithography of monolayer graphene or longitudinal unzipping of carbon nanotubes, generally suffer from low yields, non-uniform widths, and ill-defined edge structures. Only the bottom-up techniques by combining in-solution and on-surface syntheses allow one to construct a wide range of atomically precise GNRs with tunable electronic properties by using tailor-made molecular precursors. Although the necessary structural control of GNRs is now being achieved from bottom-up precision synthesis, their potential for quantum electronics remains largely unexplored due to enormous challenges in integrating these materials into devices. Here, we propose to use atomically precise GNRs as a novel organic platform for manipulation of their functionalities for nanoelectronic applications. The radically new devices will be formed by the integration of GNRs into a field effect transistor geometry. Our aim is to exploit GNRs as building blocks in electronics and spintronics, and in particular, tune their electronic and quantum properties for unrivalled device functionality. This will be achieved by designing and characterizing a range of precision GNRs from bottom-up chemical synthesis and then translating these new functionalities to technologically relevant scalable devices. By developing all the required material processing and device fabrication steps, GraSynD will unveil an atomic-scale electronics platform based on GNRs and exploit their intrinsic electronic and quantum nature and their exquisite tunability. The proposed technology is scalable, involving only one carbon material system, and will establish them as modular components for next generation electronic and spintronic devices. The interdisciplinary partners consisting of SMFD and NISE from MPI of Microstructure Physics (Halle) has complementary profiles and the necessary expertise in bottom-up synthesis/characterization of GNRs, device fabrication, quantum transport measurements, and nanoscale devices to achieve the committed objectives

CNK: Controlled Synthesis of Concealed Non-Kekulé Graphenoids as Quantum Units

Funded by: Humboldt Foundation
Description: Quantum computing, one of the grand challenges of 21st century, has the potential to transform society through innovations in science and industry. One of the major bottlenecks in the development of quantum computers is the lack of suitable magnetic materials that can perform magnetic operations at or near room temperature. Carbon-based nanostructures including magnetic graphenoids have displayed superior magnetism (long spin coherence times) at room temperature, making them attractive alternative as quantum materials. Concealed non-Kekulénes (CNKs), a sub-class of graphenoids, have unusual ground state antiparallel spins (antiferromagnetically coupled) due to their peculiar structural topology. This unique antiferromagnetic spin property along with anticipated superior magnetism makes CNKs appealing as quantum units in spin-logic gates for room temperature quantum computing. However, due to both high reactivity and lack of efficient synthetic protocols, the magnetic potential of graphenoids like CNKs has remained untapped. In this study, enhanced stability, and improved scalability of CNKs will be achieved through rational structural designs and efficient synthetic pathways through bottom-up solution-based synthesis. Nitrogen (N)-heteroatom doping in CNKs is proposed as complementary strategy to enhance their stability as well as to tailor their magnetic properties. N-heteroatom has been predicted to affect the magnetism of graphenoids, but the exact role of N-heteroatom is not clear. In this project, the role of N-heteroatom on magnetism in CNKs through structure-quantum property relation will also be investigated. Overall, the goal of the proposed project is to develop efficient synthetic routes for CNKs and their N-doped analogues to explore them as quantum units. The proposed study will be of critical fundamental as well as practical significance for providing novel graphenoids with antiferromagnetic spin for potential applications as quantum units for quantum computing.

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