The research group “Fabrication and characterization of nanostructures” is a part of research program “Advanced nanotechnologies and microtechnologies” (headed also by Prof. Tomáš Šikola). Before joining CEITEC, the group of Prof. Šikola had a long (nearly 20 years) research experience in the areas of surface- and nano-science. Research efforts in the group are primarily focusing on the preparation and characterization of nanostructures and understanding the relationship between the material and structure of nanobjects and their properties. Around 45 papers have been published in the past five years by scientists belonging to the group (selected publications are listed below). There are about 25 scientists (including PhD students and postdoctoral associates) working in the group.
The following topics are in the center of research interests of the group
- The research on the phenomena essential for the growth of thin films and self-assembly of nanoobjects (e.g. nanofibres, nanotubes, nanodots etc.) with specific properties. Selective and guided growth of nanostructures on the substrates patterned by lithographic methods; hybrid top-down/bottom-up approaches for preparing of nanostructures.
- The development of lithographic methods and their application (electron beam lithography, local anodic oxidation using scanning probe microscopy, focused ion beam).
- An experimental and theoretical study of magnetic anisotropy, transport properties ( e.g. giant- and tunneling magnetoresistance) and the dynamics of domain walls and vortexes for applications in magnetic recording, sensing and spintronics.
- The fabrication and study of the properties of metallic nanostructures and microstructures suitable for plasmonics. Experimental and theoretical research on the generation, detection and application of surface plasmon polaritons and localised surface plasmons.
- The fabrication of semiconductor ultrathin films and nanostructures (GaN, AlN) at low and medium temperatures. A study of their electronic structure, transport and optoelectronic properties.
Exploring the methods and techniques of preparation of graphene based devices.
The group has been involved for more than twenty years in development and application of high vacuum and ultrahigh vacuum (UHV) equipment and systems used for technological and analytical research methods related to surfaces, (ultra)thin films and nanostructures. The list includes broad-beam ion sources, hyperthermal focused ion beam source, time-of-flight low-energy-ion scattering spectrometer, secondary ion mass spectrometery set-up, UHV scanning tunneling microscopy(STM)/atomic force microscopy complex UHV apparatus for surface/ultrathin film technologies and in-situ analysis, spectroscopic optical reflectometer, magnetooptical Kerr microscope, etc...