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PhD: Theory of amorphous topological matter (M/F)

This offer is available in the following languages:
Français - Anglais

Date Limite Candidature : mardi 15 novembre 2022

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General information

Reference : UPR2940-ELOBER-063
Workplace : GRENOBLE
Date of publication : Tuesday, September 13, 2022
Scientific Responsible name : Adolfo GONZALEZ GRUSHIN
Type of Contract : PhD Student contract / Thesis offer
Contract Period : 36 months
Start date of the thesis : 1 January 2023
Proportion of work : Full time
Remuneration : 2 135 € gross salary

Description of the thesis topic

Topological states of matter show universal features across materials, like gapless boundary states, with unprecedented robustness to disorder. These properties hold the key to robust quantum technologies: quantum computation, spintronics, or thermo-electric sensors are important examples. Hence, discovering new topological materials and phases is a key contemporary challenge. Using crystal symmetry, around 50% of all non-magnetic crystals were recently predicted to be in a topological phase, and similar numbers are expected for magnetic materials. None of these materials is amorphous because these, by definition, lack long-range atomic order. This is a remarkable absence because amorphous matter can outperform ordinary crystals fundamentally and technologically. The above suggests that amorphous solids are the largest overlooked pool of affordable materials with potential for discovering topological phases with new, superior and controllable properties, a central goal of modern condensed matter. However, this pool remains inaccessible, and the two communities studying amorphous matter remain largely disconnected.

The main goal of the project is to develop realistic models and phenomenology to theoretically describe and experimentally detect novel amorphous topological phases in insulators and metals.

The ideal candidate will have completed or is about to complete a Master's degree on theoretical physics, ideally with knowledge of advanced topics in condensed matter physics. Prior work related to the subject will be considered favorably. The applicant will be expected to actively interact with other members of the group, e.g. through weekly group meetings, and publish their research work in peer-reviewed journals.

Work Context

The PhD will join the TMC team (Condensed Matter Theory) team. uThe Institut NÉEL is a CNRS unit (UPR 2940) under agreement with the University Grenoble Alpes. It is one of the largest French national research institutes for fundamental research in condensed matter physics enriched by interdisciplinary activities at the interfaces with chemistry, engineering and biology. It consists of 450 employees, including 175 researchers.
It is located in Grenoble, in the heart of a unique scientific, industrial and cultural environment, right next to the French Alpes.

The successful applicant will work in the group of Adolfo G. Grushin, developing tight-binding methods, field theory and numerical simulations in realistic amorphous lattices.

The applicant will benefit from collaborations with other group members in this area, ranging from numerical methods to field theoretical descriptions.
Furthermore, the candidate will benefit from the interactions with local theorists and experimentalists in the rich scientific environment in Grenoble (CNRS, CEA, ESRF) who work in a wide range of topics. Additionally, a computational cluster for demanding calculations is available.

The applicant will be expected to actively interact with other members of the group, e.g. through weekly group meetings, and publish their research work in peer-reviewed journals.

The project is embedded in a strong network of experimental and theoretical collaborations in Europe and USA, with ample funding to travel to conferences, visit collaborators.

Additional Information

The starting date of the contract, currently fixed for the 1st of january 2023, is flexible depending on the candidate.

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