Physics of Matter and Functional Materials

The Physics of Matter and Materials

It deals with the study of the fundamental properties of matter in order to establish a clear correlation between the microscopic structure of materials and their macroscopic physical characteristics, to control their functional, optical, electrical and magnetic properties for application purposes (e.g. in electronics, spintronics and sensor technology), both at the design and synthesis stage of the material. Knowledge of the microscopic properties of matter makes it possible to design artificial materials, with properties that do not exist in natural materials, enabling new devices with great impact on the way we communicate and work, on medical and surgical care, safety at airports, at work and at home, image capture and storage, and energy production.

The Physics of Matter and Materials in Parma

  • semiconductors for photovoltaic applications (solar cells) and broadband semiconductors for power electronics and sensor applications: study of the relevant optical, vibrational and electron-transport properties;
  • magnetic materials for applications in energy conversion (magnetic refrigeration and permanent magnets) and multiferroic materials with magneto-electric properties;
  • carbon-based nanostructured materials for applications in both innovative ionic batteries and hydrogen storage;
  • molecular nano-magnets for computers based on quantum effects;
  • superconducting materials and strongly electron-correlated systems.