Main Research Lines
- Development of novel nanodevice structures and nanofabrication methods to investigate the physical properties of materials at the nanoscale and their technological relevance
- Spin and thermal transport in two-dimensional systems such as topological insulators, graphene and transition metal dichalcogenides
- Control of the magnetic state of ferro- and antiferro-magnetic systems by means of the spin-orbit interaction and, particularly, the spin Hall effect
In 2015 the Physics and Engineering of Nanodevices Group continued with its progress on the ERC Starting Grant project to investigate the spin properties of materials with large spin-orbit interaction, in particular topological insulators. The project (SPINBOUND) was launched in February 2013 and, in January 2014, the first results were published in the journal Physical Review Letters. The work reported the role of electron-phonon coupling in the electronic properties of surface states of topological insulators, putting forward constraints that will be key for future devices based on these materials.
Prof Valenzuela obtained his PhD in Physics in 2001 at the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina, and went on to be a Postdoctoral Fellow and Research Associate at Harvard University, and a Research Scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Since July 2008, Prof Valenzuela has been an ICREA Research Professor as well as Group Leader of ICN’s, now ICN2’s, Physics and Engineering of Nanoelectronic Devices Group. Since September 2008 he has also served as Associate Professor at the Physics department of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB).