Web based magazine, No.1, March 15, 2006

National Programmes and Initiatives

National Infrastructures
Successful European Cooperation
Outstanding Scientific Results
National Centres of Excellence



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MAG-EL-MAT: New Materials for Magnetoelectronics


Coordinator: Doc. dr hab. Bogdan Idzikowski
Institute of Molecular Physics, Polish Academy of Sciences
M. Smoluchowskiego 17, 60-179 Poznan, Poland

tel.: (+48 61) 8695-231; fax: (+48 61) 8684-524

e-mail: magelmat@ifmpan.poznan.pl

Main objectives of the network

Integration of the Polish scientific community of physicists, involved in studying problems related to modern materials for magnetoelectronics. In particular, there are good prospects for theoretical cooperation on electronic transport through nanostructures; thin films, multilayers and magnetic excitations therein, and band structure computations from first principles.

Exchange of scientific information among the cooperating Polish institutions, making use of their international contacts and experience gained during applications to join the arising European scientific initiatives (centers of excellence, networks of excellence, European Science Foundation, etc.).

Joint efforts for European Union grants.


The present research project "New Material for Magnetoelectronic Network" (Mag-El-Mat) is related to the new field of science and technology, called spin electronics [1-3]. Investigations carried out within this subject are concentrated on the use of the electron spin degree of freedom as well as electronic charge. Possibility to make use of spin is of great importance, not only for cognitive reasons but also from the practical point of view, because the conventional silicon-based electronics is facing now barriers of fundamental nature, which hinder further miniaturisation (Moore's law [4]). The main objectives of the present project are studies of electronic and magnetic properties of a vast class of nanoscopic materials, such as: thin films, multilayers, composites, molecular systems (including carbon nanotubes) and quantum dots.

Theoretical studies will be focussed in particular on magnetic phenomena in micro-junctions either containing ferromagnetic spices or placed at magnetic field. So, the studies will cover: among others: GMR (giant magnetoresistance), TMR (tunnel magnetoresistance), spin accumulation, spin injection and current-induced switching of magnetization. The underlying physical mechanisms responsible for these phenomena are related to electronic band structure of the components forming the microjunction, electron-electron interactions (Coulomb blockade, Kondo effect), interactions of electrons with elementary excitations (e.g. spin waves, phonons etc.).

As regards, experimental studies, the research activity is also orientated towards physics of magnetic and nanostructured materials for future applications in novel electronics, and an effort is being made in order to build the scientific capacity of the Center as a potent research partner for leading research centers. In particular, we aim at intensifying investigations of spin-dependent phenomena in nanostructured and layered systems as well as other new magnetic materials, like intermatallic compounds, 3d-, 4f- and 5f-metal based alloys and so on. These materials are the subjects of great attention in view of their potential applications in new magnetoelectronic devices.

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