Evolution of magnetoelasticity from a single-atom bridge to bulk
Harsh Chopra Principal Investigator
MetadataShow full item record
****Technical Abstract****<br/>This project will experimentally map the evolution of magneto-elasticity in ferromagnets from a single-atom to bulk. This will be accomplished by using a custom built probe that is capable of making stable atomic-sized samples as small as a single-atom bridge, an atomic chain or atomic clusters, and measure their interatomic forces and distortions with pico-level resolution under applied field, mechanical perturbations, and as a function of temperature. The project will focus on iron, cobalt, nickel, terbium and gadolinium, which are key components of all magnetic actuator materials. By pinpointing the length scales where enhanced magnetoelasticity occur will lead to new strategies for "materials by design" and development of new alloys with enhanced actuation. The project will support education of two graduate students. Training of graduate students in thin films and vacuum technology, nano-science and nanofabrication is of direct relevance to wealth generating high-tech companies and opens vast opportunities for students upon graduation. The project will also host 1-2 high school or undergraduate students through university's Louis Stokes Alliance for Minorities Program. The project will also offer outreach to a startup company that seeks to commercialize the probe used to conduct experiments in this project.<br/><br/>****Non-Technical Abstract****<br/>The ability of magnetic materials to precisely expand or contract in a magnetic field makes them highly useful as sensors and actuators in industries ranging from automobile, aerospace, data storage, to satellites and telecommunication systems. There is urgent need to create new magnetic alloys that can exhibit larger displacements or exert higher forces in a magnetic field. This project will experimentally map the evolution of this actuation ability in magnets, starting with samples as small as a single atom bridge or an atomic chain, to bulk. This will be accomplished by using a custom built probe capable of making atomic sized samples and measure forces and displacements with sub-nanometer accuracy. The project will focus on iron, cobalt, nickel, terbium and gadolinium, which are key components of all magnetic actuators and sensors. Pinpointing the optimum size for highest actuation will lead to new strategies for "materials by design" and development of advanced alloys. The project will support education of two graduate students and 1-2 undergraduate students whose training in thin films and vacuum technology, nano-science and microfabrication is highly sought after by wealth generating high tech companies. The project will also offer help to a startup company that is commercializing the probe used for experiments in this project.