The University of Southampton

Future Leaders Fellow to help unlock transformative potential of multiferroics

Published: 30 April 2020
Dr Marcus Newton will investigate multifunctional ferroic materials in the Future Leaders Fellowship

Dr Marcus Newton will use novel X-ray imaging to expand the understanding of multifunctional ferroic materials in a new Future Leaders Fellowship at the University of Southampton.

The Lecturer in Physics and Astronomy will work with the Diamond Light Source synchrotron facility in Oxfordshire to investigate the materials that simultaneously exhibit more than one property, such as electricity, elasticity or magnetism.

Scientists predict that multiferroics could help realise computer memory chips that are more energy efficient by two orders or magnitude and mobile phone batteries that retain charge for a year. This new Southampton materials research could also prove revolutionary for astronomy.

"Certain materials have structural defects that share the same symmetry as that of the early universe," Marcus explains. "The image in 3D could tell us about the structure of the early universe – it could help cosmologists understand how the universe was made."

The £1.1m programme, called Time Resolved Imaging of Multifunctional Materials in Three Dimensions (TRIMM-3D), is the fourth Future Leaders Fellowship from UKRI to be awarded to the University of Southampton.

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