Materials are a driving force underlying virtually all technological innovations in history, from the development of bronze and steel to the ultrapure silicon at the heart of electronic devices today.
Much progress has been made in the last 50 years in understanding the relationship between the structures and properties of solids. This has aided in the search for functional materials with specific properties. Yet many recent innovations have come not by design, but through the unintended discovery of a new class of complex compounds displaying particularly favorable properties.
This not only shows that much of the fundamental science is still not understood, but also highlights the importance of experimental explorations in materials research.
The McQueen Laboratory is a solid state chemistry materials research group focused on the discovery of new phenomena through the design and synthesis of new materials. We aim to achieve the next generation of materials revolutions by combining the development of new synthetic techniques with advances in measurement and analysis methods to discover, design, and control materials with exotic electronic states of matter.
We are particularly interested in: (i) Discovering novel materials with favorable physical (electrical, magnetic, optical) properties; (ii) Elucidating the structure-property relationships in these new compounds, especially with regard to strong electron correlations and their influence on the electrical, magnetic, and optical properties through coupling of charge, orbital, and spin degrees of freedom; and (iii) Pushing our understanding of how to design better materials with specific functions.