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Turan Birol wins NSF CAREER Award

Feb. 10, 2021 - Assistant Professor Turan Birol has been selected for a Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Award from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to support his research on “Structural Control of Spin-Orbit Coupling.” This prestigious award provides support of junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations.

This grant will support theoretical and computational research and educational activities that aim to develop fundamental understanding of the interplay between the orbital and spin degrees of freedom of electrons, called the spin-orbit coupling, in solid state materials. While every atom, and hence every material, has some degree of spin-orbit coupling, the symmetry of the arrangement of atoms in certain crystalline compounds can lead to specific types of spin-orbit effects that are beneficial for future technological applications. These applications include the spin transistor, which enables the control of the spin-current of the electrons. If realized on a commercial scale, the spin transistor could lead to a spintronics revolution in the electronics industry. The PI and his team will utilize computer simulations and a field of mathematics, referred to as the group theory, to understand how the crystal structure can be externally manipulated to induce different spin-orbit effects. This fundamental understanding is expected to lead to the prediction of new materials that could help realize spintronics technologies on a commercial scale.

Related Link: https://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/showAward?AWD_ID=2046020&HistoricalAwards=false

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