COSAM News Articles 2019 May COSAM’s Marcelo A. Kuroda Granted NSF CAREER Award to Investigate Properties of Heterostructures formed with Ultrathin Materials

COSAM’s Marcelo A. Kuroda Granted NSF CAREER Award to Investigate Properties of Heterostructures formed with Ultrathin Materials

Published: 06/04/2019

By: Maria Gebhardt

Two-dimensional materials are few-atom-thick crystals that have attracted the scientific community since their isolation in 2004.  Unprecedented physical properties can emerge in multilayers formed with different two-dimensional materials that preserve their sharp crystalline interfaces. The National Science Foundation (NSF) has granted Dr. Marcelo A. Kuroda a $536,000 CAREER Award.  This prestigious award is given for his innovative perspective to understand and control the properties of these layered systems using theory and atomistic calculations. The project entitled Modulation of Interlaying Coupling in Heterostructures based on Two-Dimensional Materials is supported by the Condensed Matter and Materials Theory program and EPSCoR co-funding.

Dr. Kuroda is an assistant professor in the Department of Physics in the College of Sciences and Mathematics (COSAM). He earned his doctorate degree at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign in 2009, and conducted post-doctoral research at the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center.  His research is produced using the high-performance computing capabilities available locally and in national facilities.

Through this NSF CAREER Award, Dr. Kuroda will analyze complex heterostructures for their weak interactions and devise mechanism to tailor their physical properties. His group will employ theoretical calculations and large-scale computations that capture both quantum mechanical phenomena and compositional details. In particular, he will study the modulation of the interlayer coupling through external electric, magnetic, and mechanical fields. Aside from the fundamental physics of these novel systems, his research may guide the search for high-performance functional materials and improve energy-efficient device structures leading to more productive energy usage.

In addition, as the primary investigator, Dr. Kuroda will be conducting activities at Auburn University seeking to reach out to academic institutions in the Southeastern portion of the United States. He will be coordinating webinars with the Society of Physics Students (SPS) where faculty explain current research in their sub-disciplines and discuss opportunities for prospective graduate students. Dr. Kuroda will also participate in two major outreach events at Auburn University: the Summer Science Institute in June and the Semiconductor Day.

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