Can electron collectiveness save us from global warming?
Search engines, e-mail, watch-on-demand websites, cyber-security and smartphones are examples of how information technologies have changed our lives in the past decade. However, the growing usage of these technologies has arrived with a cost—a sharp increase in global electrical-energy consumption. Likewise, the inability to manage heat has already become crucial for mobile-phones. Hence, novel materials that will replace the existing technologies are being sought continuously. Superconductors and ferroelectrics are functional solid-state systems that exhibit unique collective electron behavior, which renders these systems for energy-efficient nano switching devices. Nevertheless, to date the understanding and controllability of the emergence of collective-electron behavior in these materials, which is also at the nanoscale, has remained elusive to us, hindering the realization of their great technological potential.
We developed and utilized methods to expose the collective electron behavior in superconductors and ferroelectrics at the deep submicron scale. For instance, using advanced atomic force microscopy (AFM) and transition electron microscopy (TEM) techniques we have tailored the multiscale ferroelectric behavior (Fig. 1). Likewise, using advanced nano-fabrication designs, we demonstrated how the superconducting behavior can be controlled at the nanoscale. Thanks to the strong correlation between electron collectiveness and functionality in these materials, not only have we illuminated the origin of collective electron interactions in solid-state systems, but we also facilitated novel technologies, ranging from single-photon detectors to quantum switching devices.
תאריך עדכון אחרון : 08/01/2017