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Aim of the planned Research Training Group is the experimental and theoretical investigation of electronic properties of carbon based nanostructures (CBNs), i.e., devices based on graphene, carbon nanotubes, aromatic molecules or hybrids of those. We shall focus on:

  1. The electrical properties, also as influenced by mechanical and vibrational degrees of freedom, of the recently discovered single-layer, multi-layer and nanopatterned graphene.
  2. Unexplored features of carbon nanotubes-based quantum wires, in which the tubes are suspended, functionalized for biosensor applications, or utilized as nanoleads for transport across aromatic molecules.
  3. Vibronic and switching effects in scanning-tunneling spectroscopy of molecules and in single-molecule single-electron transistors.

Experimentally, we aim at the characterization, control and manipulation of CBNs with various complementary tools, comprising non-equilibrium transport experiments in two- and three-terminal configurations and in Hall geometry; time-resolved Raman spectroscopy; scanning tunnelling spectroscopy and atomic force imaging. From the theoretical point of view, we shall perform fully quantum mechanical and semiclassical transport calculations aiming at a qualitative and quantitative understanding of the properties of the experimentally investigated CBNs. A close collaboration between theoretical and experimental groups is envisaged.

The Research Training Group will be built on and complement the existing scientific strongholds of the physics department in the field of nanoscience, ranging from spin-electronics to quantum information and molecular electronics. The collaboration with the chemistry department will strengthen the existing activities in the field of molecular electronics, offering the opportunity to combine top-down and bottom-up approaches.

The interdisciplinary character of the research program, involving groups from theoretical and experimental condensed matter physics as well as from organic and analytical chemistry, will be reflected in the teaching, seminar and workshop program of the Research Training Group. Thematic lectures and seminars, accessible to all students of the Research Training Group, will provide a common language and knowledge and give the doctoral students the opportunity of a multifaceted scientific education.