Condensed Matter Physics And Materials Science

Condensed Matter Physics And Materials Science

CMP is uniquely focused on new properties and phenomena that emerge from the aggregation of strongly interacting constituents. Perhaps most importantly, the size of these aggregates is on the scale of life, ranging from atoms to objects that can be held in the human hand.

More than any other discipline, CMP guides our understanding of the world we experience, and has the potential to help solve the challenging problems that we face in the new century. 

Berkeley boasts a large community of researchers in condensed matter physics and materials physics with diverse interests, both on campus and at the nearby Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL). The research activities of the experimentalists fall into several of the central topics of CMP: quantum information, physics of nanomaterials, magnetism, quantum materials, optical properties, photoemission, superconductivity, and new materials. 

The goal of condensed matter theory is to understand the rich phenomena that emerge from relatively simple constituents (electrons and nuclei) and rules (nonrelativistic quantum mechanics, statistical mechanics, and Maxwell’s equations). The theory group works closely with experimental groups at Berkeley and elsewhere, as new theoretical developments in condensed matter are typically both stimulated and validated by experiment.

Physics Faculty

Theorists

Marvin Cohen (E)

University ProfessorProfessor of the Graduate School

Biography

Marvin L. Cohen is University Professor of Physics at the University of California at Berkeley and Senior Faculty Scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Cohen’s current and past research covers a broad spectrum of subjects in theoretical condensed matter physics.

Research Interests

At any given time, my group and I are involved in research on a variety of subjects in condensed matter physics. Because of the breadth of this field, it is important to expose graduate students and postdoctoral researchers to a wide spectrum of problems.

Dung-Hai Lee

Professor

Biography

Professor Dung-Hai Lee received his B.S. degree from the National Tsinghua University of Taiwan. He went to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1977 for graduate studies, and received his Ph.D. in physics in 1982. After staying at M.I.T. for another two years, he joined the IBM T.J.

Research Interests

Professor Lee is a theoretical condensed matter physicist. The principal goal of his research is to uncover new states of matter and understand their physical properties. He approaches this goal by engaging in three different types of research activity: 1.

Steven Louie

Professor

Biography

Steven G. Louie received his Ph.D. in physics from UC Berkeley in 1976. After having worked at the IBM Watson Research Center, Bell Laboratories, and University of Pennsylvania, he joined the UC Berkeley faculty in 1980.

Research Interests

My interests are in theoretical condensed matter physics and nanoscience including: electronic and structural properties of crystals, surfaces, interfaces and clusters; quasiparticle and optical excitations in solids and nanostructures; electron correlation effects in bulk and reduced-dimensional

Joel Moore

Professor

Biography

Joel Moore joined the physics department faculty as an assistant professor in January 2002. He received his A.B. summa cum laude in physics from Princeton University in 1995 and spent a Fulbright year at TIFR before graduate studies at MIT on a Hertz fellowship. After completing his Ph.D.

Research Interests

I am a theoretical physicist studying condensed matter. My main interest is in the properties of “strongly correlated” materials and devices, in which electron-electron interactions yield new states of matter.

Jeffrey Neaton

Professor

Biography

Jeffrey B. Neaton received his Ph.D. in physics from Cornell University in 2000. After a postdoc at Rutgers University, and after having worked at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory as a postdoc and staff scientist at the Molecular Foundry, he joined the UC Berkeley faculty in 2014.

Research Interests

My research centers on understanding and design of novel condensed phases and their properties with theoretical and computational approaches.

Ashvin Vishwanath

Professor

Biography

Joined the Physics Department at UC Berkeley as an assistant professor in the summer of 2004. He received his masters degree in Physics from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, in 1996 and his Ph.D. in 2001 from Princeton University.

Research Interests

Theoretical Physics – Quantum Condensed Matter. I am interested in systems of many quantum particles, where strong interactions lead to new states of matter.

Experimentalists

James Analytis

Assistant Professor

Biography

James Analytis joined the faculty in January 2013 as the Charles Kittel Chair in condensed matter physics. He received his B.Sc. in physics from Canterbury University in 2001 and his D. Phil. from the University of Oxford as a Rhodes' Scholar in 2006.

Research Interests

My research focuses on the discovery and understanding of exotic materials manifesting novel quantum phenomena that have both fundamental and technological implications, particularly superconductors, exotic magnets and topological insulators.

Robert Birgeneau

Arnold and Barbara Silverman Distinguished Professor of Physics, Materials Science and Engineering, and Public PolicyChancellor Emeritus

Biography

Professor Birgeneau received his Ph.D. in Physics from Yale University in 1966 with Professor Werner Wolf. He was on the faculty of Yale for one year and then spent one year at Oxford University.

Research Interests

Professor Birgeneau's research is primarily concerned with the phases and phase transition behavior of novel states of matter.

John Clarke (E)

Professor of the Graduate School

Biography

John Clarke received his B.A. (1964), Ph.D. (1968), and Sc.D. (2005) from Cambridge University. After a postdoctoral fellowship at UC Berkeley, he joined the Physics faculty in 1969. He received the Distinguished Teaching Award in 1983.

Research Interests

One of my main interests is in the development, noise limitations and applications of Superconducting Quantum Interference Devices (SQUIDs).  I am particularly intrigued by quantum-limited detectors and measurements.

Michael Crommie

Professor

Biography

Mike Crommie received a B.S. degree in physics from UCLA in 1984 and his Ph.D. from UC Berkeley in 1991. He was a post-doc at IBM Almaden for two years before becoming an Assistant Professor in the Physics Dept. at Boston University in 1994.

Research Interests

My main research interests lie in exploring the local electronic, magnetic, and mechanical properties of atomic and molecular structures at surfaces.

Erwin Hahn (E)

Professor Emeritus

Biography

Professor of Physics, UC Berkeley, since 1955, Professor Emeritus since 1991.B.S. from Juniata College; Ph.D. from University of Illinois, 1949.

Frances Hellman

Professor

Biography

Frances Hellman received her BA in Physics from Dartmouth College in 1978, graduating summa cum laude and phi beta kappa with high honors in physics.

Research Interests

Our group studies thermodynamic and temperature-dependent properties of materials.

Alessandra Lanzara

Professor

Biography

Alessandra Lanzara received her PhD in physics from Universita’ di Roma La Sapienza, Italy in 1999. She was a post-doc at Stanford University for three years since 1999.

Research Interests

The Lanzara Research Group conducts experiments in solid-state physics.

Joseph Orenstein

Professor

Biography

Joseph W. Orenstein earned his Ph.D. in Solid State Physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1980. He received an IBM Postdoctoral Fellowship 1978-79, and was a Member of the Technical Staff at the AT&T Bell Laboratories from 1981 to 1989.

Research Interests

In our research group we use light (or electromagnetic radiation to we physicists) to probe condensed matter systems. We measure quantities like transmission and reflection coefficients, and nonlinear optical properties as well.

Richard Packard (E)

Professor

Biography

Professor Packard received his Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Michigan in 1969. After a postdoctoral appointment at the University of California at Berkeley he was appointed to the faculty in 1971.

Research Interests

Condensed Matter Physics, Experimental Low Temperature Physics, Quantum Liquids, Nanophysics.

Zi Qiang Qiu

Professor

Biography

Zi Q. Qiu received Ph.D. in 1991 from the Johns Hopkins University. He joined the Physics Department of UC Berkeley in 1993.

R. Ramesh

Professor

Biography

R. Ramesh received his Ph.D. from UC Berkeley in 1987. APS David Adler Lectureship, 2005; Distinguished University Professor, University of Maryland, College Park, 2003; Fellow, American Physical Society, 2001; A.

Research Interests

Thin film growth and materials physics of complex oxides: Structure-Property-Processing interrelationships; Crystalline Oxides on Semiconductors; Functional metal oxide thin film deposition and processing for microelectronic, magneto-electronic, optical and high frequency applica

Arthur Rosenfeld (E)

Professor Emeritus

Biography

Professor of Physics, UC Berkeley, since 1957, Emeritus since 1994.Ph.D. from University of Chicago, 1954, under Enrico Fermi. Senior Staff at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory from 1955-73. Experimental particle physics with Alvarez Group, founded International Particle Data Group (LBL/CERN), 1974.

Charles Shank (E)

Professor Emeritus

Biography

Professor in Chemistry, Physics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences and Director, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, born 1943; B.S. (1965), M.S. (1966), Ph.D.

Research Interests

Our research investigates physical processes in materials and molecules which occur on a femtosecond time scale (1 femtosecond = 10-15 sec).

Yuen-Ron Shen (E)

Professor Emeritus

Biography

Ph.D., Harvard University, 1963; Berkeley faculty since 1964; Principal Investigator, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory since 1967; Member, American Academy of Arts and Sciences, National Academy of Sciences, Academia Sinica; Fellow, American Physical Society, and Optical Society of America,

Research Interests

Our research is in the broad area of interaction of light with matter comprising condensed matter physics, molecular physics, nonlinear optics, laser spectroscopy, and surface sciences.

Irfan Siddiqi

Associate Professor

Biography

Irfan Siddiqi received his AB (1997) in chemistry & physics from Harvard University. He then went on to receive a PhD (2002) in applied physics from Yale University, where he stayed as a postdoctoral researcher until 2005.

Research Interests

Irfan Siddiqi received his AB (1997) in chemistry & physics from Harvard University. He then went on to receive a PhD (2002) in applied physics from Yale University, where he stayed as a postdoctoral researcher until 2005.

Feng Wang

Associate Professor

Biography

Feng Wang received a B.A. from Fudan University, Shanghai, in 1999 and a Ph.D. from Columbia University in 2004. From 2005-2007, he has been a Miller Fellow with Miller Institute for Basic Science at Berkeley. He joined the physics faculty in fall, 2007.

Research Interests

We are interested in light-matter interaction in condensed matter physics, with an emphasis on novel physical phenomena emerging in nanoscale structures and at surfaces/interfaces.

Peter Yu (E)

Professor Emeritus

Biography

Peter Yu received his B.Sc from the Univ. of Hong Kong in 1967 and the Ph.D. in Physics from Brown in 1972. After doing postdoctoral work at Berkeley between 1971-73, he joined the IBM T. J. Watson Research Center as a research staff member. He returned to Berkeley as a faculty member in 1979.

Research Interests

My research interest has been in experimental studies of the physics of semiconductors. I am particularly interested in problems relevant to device application of semiconductors such as defects, electron-phonon interactions and effects on these as a result of quantum confinement.

Alex Zettl

Professor

Biography

Alex Zettl received his B.A. from UC Berkeley in 1978 and his Ph.D. from UCLA in 1983. He joined the Physics Department faculty at UC Berkeley in 1983. Currently he is Professor of Physics at UC Berkeley and Senior Scientist at LBNL.

Research Interests

My research interests are in experimental condensed matter physics. We synthesize and characterize novel materials with unusual electronic and magnetic ground states, including low-dimensional and nanoscale structures.

Research Groups

Quantum Nanoelectronics Laboratory Condensed Matter Physics And Materials Science

Quantum mechanics is a theory that was developed to explain the properties of atoms and light. It is one of the most thoroughly tested and successful theories in the history of science. It is also...