Project Level: Summer

Project Duration: 6 weeks

Hours of Engagement: 30

Project Description:

Scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) is an experimental technique used to image, manipulate, and probe the structure of materials at the atomic scale. STM routinely achieves atomic resolution because the image is formed by the tunneling of electrons between an ultrasharp metal tip and a surface (i.e. not optically). When atomic scale information is needed, STM is the go-to technique. Applications of STM include understanding defects in quantum devices, seeing arrangements of molecules for organic electronics (OLEDs, solar cells), probing the limits of magnetic data storage, and tracking chemical reactions molecule by molecule. In this project, you will use the new STM instrument installed in SMP to investigate matter at the atomic scale. The project aims to understand how electron waves on the surface of metals facilitate the creation of nanostructures.

Expected Outcomes:

You will gain familiarity with ultrahigh vacuum equipment, cryogenic liquids, image processing, and data analysis.

Suitable for:

This project is open to students with a background in physics, chemistry, or engineering. Familiarity with condensed matter physics is a plus. Enthusiasm for experimental work is a must.

Contact for further information:

Dr Peter Jacobson:

Project members

Dr Peter Jacobson

Physics Tutor Coordinator
Lecturer in CMP
School of Mathematics and Physics