Electronic effects and fundamental physics studied in molecular interfaces

Speaker: Prof. Werner Hofer (Newcastle University)
Title: Electronic effects and fundamental physics studied in molecular interfaces
Time: 10:00 AM, July 9th
Location: 909-B, Dushu Lake Campus
Advances in the precision and the temperature range of experiments at surfaces and interfaces have led to a wealth of new science over the past few years. In particular, the ability to use the whole breadth of organic synthesis for the creation of specific molecules and molecular epitaxy as well as surface engineering to modify the physical properties of the molecular systems practically at will have expanded the range of results dramatically. This development, it turns out, leads to a huge variety of experimental results which is sometimes hard to assign to a particular effect or property. Here, theoretical simulations, which have also substantially improved over the last years, turn out to be essential. We shall, on a number of model systems and for a number of effects like Kondo resonances, vibrations, chiral adsorption, and molecular rotations show that this variety and precision make it possible today to use molecular interfaces like lab benches and to perform detailed experiments on individual electrons and spins.
Professor Werner Hofer is Professor of Chemical Physics, with expertise in theoretical condensed matter physics, physical chemistry, and electron theory, including fundamental aspects of quantum mechanics. He holds a master’s degree in engineering physics from the University of Technology, Vienna, and a PhD in Condensed Matter Theory from the same University. Prof. Hofer is internationally known for his work on the nanoscience of surfaces and interfaces and has worked for nearly twenty years in this field with international collaborators in Canada, the US, China, and Europe.
From 1999 to 2002 he was research assistant and research associate at University College London, from 2002 to 2014 he was Lecturer, Reader (2005) and Professor (2006) in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Liverpool. He was awarded a competitive Royal Society University Research Fellowship in 2003, which he held until 2011. From 2007 to 2013 he was an international member of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research, participating in research on nanoelectronics. Since 2014 he is Professor of Chemical Physics at Newcastle University. His editorial roles include member of the editorial board of Journal of Physics (2005-2008), Editor of the Elsevier journal Surfaces and Interfaces (2016-2017), and Associate Editor-in-Chief of Frontiers of Physics (Chinese Academy of Sciences and Springer, since 2016). He publishes regularly in high-impact journals like Nature, Nature Chemistry,Nature Nanotechnology, Angewandte Chemie, Reviews of Modern Physics, Physical Review Letters, Nano Letters, and the Journal of the American Chemical Society.