May 7, 2021

$3 million award to create a new field of research in one-dimensional quantum materials

Alexander Balandin’s Vannevar Bush Faculty Fellowship will help advance quantum materials for electronics and energy conversion

Author: Holly Ober
May 7, 2021

Alexander Balandin, a UC Riverside distinguished professor of electrical and computer engineering and materials science, has received a $3 million Vannevar Bush Faculty Fellowship from the Department of Defense to create a new field of research in one-dimensional quantum materials and their composites. 

Alexander Balandin
Alexander Balandin

Electronics experts expect that one-dimensional quantum materials can be used in a variety of electronic devices, with applications in low-power electronic circuits, quantum computers, small-size electromagnetic antennas for radiofrequency communications, and energy-conversion devices. The Vannevar Bush Faculty Fellowship will help Balandin’s group create a new comprehensive research field of one-dimensional quantum materials. The project’s focus is on quantum phenomena that reveal themselves in this unique class of materials. 

Balandin’s expertise and research interests cover a broad range, from solid-state physics theory to experimental investigation of advanced materials and fabrication of nano-devices with applications in electronics and energy conversion. His research group is internationally recognized for pioneering studies of graphene’s thermal properties, discovery of unique features of phonon thermal transport in two-dimensional materials, and the first proposals and demonstrations of practical applications of graphene in thermal management of electronics.

To give an example of the kind of innovative work that motivated the new research direction, the group recently published the details of a flexible polymer film filled with needle-like, quasi-one-dimensional threads that combines excellent electromagnetic shielding with ease of manufacture. Electromagnetic shielding prevents radio frequency interference in sensitive electronics.

For the Vannevar Bush Faculty Fellowship project, Balandin and co-workers will investigate formation of charge-density-wave condensate in one-dimensional Van der Waals materials. Other topics of interest include one-dimensional materials with strong spin-orbit coupling, phonon confinement, and quantization effects. 

The Vannevar Bush Faculty Fellowship is the Department of Defense’s most prestigious single-investigator award and supports new, out-of-the box ideas where researcher creativity intersects with the unknown.

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