Magnetic/Electronic Manipulation by Reversible Polarization of 2D Ferroelectrics

Study level

Master of Philosophy
Vacation research experience scheme


Spin states manipulation and electronic phase control in two-dimensional materials are essential technologies for next generation electronics with low energy cost and high performance. However, the traditional approaches to achieve the manipulation like external bias and strain not only suffer from the high energy costing, but the stored information is also volatile once the external field is removed. It is thus urgent to develop the feasible approach to control the spin and electronic states using non-volatile methods. In this project, 2D ferroelectric materials will be used to manipulate the magnetic and electronic states based on theoretical simulations, which will pave the foundations and provide theoretical guidance for low-dimensional electronics.

Research Activities

The project will be conducted based on theoretical simulations, which mainly includes three research tasks as following:
1) Study the electronic and magnetic properties of individual two-dimensional magnetic materials and ferroelectric materials
2) Investigate the effects of polarization reversal and external electric fields on the electronic, magnetic properties of the heterostructures, reveal the magnetoelectric coupling and develop the feasible approaches to achieve the cross-control.
3) Built the prototype of electronic devices using the studied materials and improve the performance by doping and strain.


This project aims to:
(i) Design 2D hybrid multiferroics by integrating ferromagnetic and ferroelectric layered components, develop long-sought tunable magnetic states controlled by ferroelectric switching.
(ii) Construct conceptual blueprints for ferroic field-effect transistors with fast switching speed and low energy consumption based on multilayer ferroelectrics, reveal the operation mechanism of the ferroelectric resistance, and optimize the performance of the transistors from transport simulations.

Skills and experience

Background of chemistry, physics and materials science. The candidates with experience of computational material science, theoretical simulations and quantum software usage are especially welcome.

Professor Sean Smith, Australian National University Dr Xin Tan, Australian National University