B.Sc. / M.Sc. Thesis
Do your thesis project at the Department of Synchrotron Radiation Research!
Bachelor's and Master's projects are available in all research fields of the division. Please feel free to contact the corresponding project leader or any other member of the group for more information. Some examples of currently available Master projects can be found further below.
A large part of our research is performed at the MAX IV Laboratory - currently at the MAX-lab facilities located at the LTH campus, and in future at the new-built MAX IV synchrotron. In addition, we are using several international synchrotron facilities as well as state-of-the-art lab equipment within the physics building.
Although some of our work is relevant to modern industrial technology, most of it is basic research which aims to answer basic questions about the nature and behaviour of surfaces and molecules.
Finite Element simulations of piezoelectric properties of nanorods
Nanorods have a great potential for light emitting diodes (LEDs) and other
applications due to their excellent crystalline and optoelectronic properties.
Furthermore, some nanorods have piezoelectric material properties, meaning that
mechanical strain generates a piezoelectric field and thus a separation of electric
charges within the nanorod. Making use of both semiconductor and piezoelectric
properties opens the door for novel devices within piezophototronics, such as
strain-engineered LEDs with tunable wavelengths.
Exotic magnetic order in transition metal oxide nanomaterials
The transition metal oxides have emerged as one of the most fascinating and potentially technologically important material systems. They exhibit a broad class physics properties, including insulating, conducting and superconducting phases, ordered magnetic structures and ferroelectric order. The possibility to stabilize or tune this array of properties by strain, introduced by thin film growth or nanostructure engineering, further increases the research appeal of these compounds. This project will exploit synchrotron x-rays to investigate the structural and magnetic properties of transition metal oxide thin films. These experiments will be undertaken at certain synchrotron facilities in Europe, such as the ESRF in France, Diamond Light Source in England or Petra III in Germany. The project will focus on materials known as the pyrochlore iridates, e.g. Nd2Ir2O7 (see figure). These materials have recently puzzled scientists due to their surprising combination of exotic magnetic orders and insulating electronic behaviour.
In Situ Characterisation of Functional Surfaces by Electron Spectroscopy
Transition metal complexes have shown a high chemical reactivity and are suitable
for catalysis in the chemical synthesis industry. In this project you will use
synchrotron based electron spectroscopies, e.g. Ambient Pressure X-ray Photoelectron
Spectroscopy (APXPS), to probe the electronic structure of surfaces functionalised
by transition metal complex nanostructures. With the APXPS instrument available at
the MAX IV Laboratory you will be able to investigate reactions previously unavailable
with electron spectroscopies, putting you at the very edge of the research field.
These investigations aim to yield fundamental knowledge about the catalytic processes
which will enable the catalysis industry to create effective, green catalysts from
Laser-based gas-phase studies applied to catalysis
Most often, mass spectrometry is used in order to analyze gases during catalytic
studies. This, however only provides a global measure of the of the overall gas
composition in the reactor. With laser based techniques, such as laser-induced
fluorescence (LIF), it is possible to measure specific species both spatially and
temporally resolved. The aim of this master project is to develop the use of LIF in
catalysis, to provide a completely new view of catalytic reactions. The measurements
will focus on
spatially resolved species involved in CO oxidation. The project is a collaboration
between the Division of Synchrotron Radiation Research and Combustion Physics.
Catalysis on the atomic level - the role of the step?
Catalysis plays a crucial role in modern society, e.g. for exhausts treatment from
cars. Despite this wide use, the involved processes are not well understood on the
atomic level. We do know, however, that the reactions occur on the surface of the
catalyst and that defects, such as steps, on the surface can improve the catalytic
Surface and interface characterization of semiconductor nanowires
Low-dimensional semiconductors, especially semiconductor nanowires, are key materials
for future devices like ultrafast transistors, white LEDs, and solar cells with high
efficiency at low costs. We are studying the surfaces of such nanowires from the
micrometer scale down to individual atoms in order to understand their exciting new
physics that enable superior device performance.
Three-dimensional momentum imaging of core-excited molecules or molecular clusters
Imaging of molecules is a powerful technique for understanding how molecules respond
to photoionization or photoexcitation. We are particularly interested in understanding
how the geometry of a molecule changes: one example is isomerization or proton transfer
that is driven by vibrational excitation. We image ionic fragments in a multicoincidence
time-of-flight spectrometer. Our method allows us to extract a detailed picture of
changes in molecular geometry on both rapid and slow time scales. The project involves
analysis of data obtained at MAX-Lab and includes interpretation of the alignment of
core-excited molecules based upon the quantum mechanical dipole operator, as well as
analysis of the three-dimensional momentum of fragments from single dissociation events
in order to extract information about the geometry and the final dissociative states.
The analysis is based upon correlations between the energies of particles as well as
Time-resolved three-dimensional imaging studies at the atto and femtosecond time scales
Atoms and molecules excited with short intense laser pulses are ionized by single
or multiphoton processes. By using two laser pulses with a time delay we can study
the temporal behavior of photoionization to specific electronic states, and the
fragmentation of molecules can be probed in the time domain. Time-resolved laser
photoionization experiments which provide access to the wave like nature of the
particles in the system. The experimental method is a three-dimensional imaging
technique using a time-of-flight spectroscopy with multiparticle position sensitive
detection. The goal of the project is to understand the fundamental interaction
between light and matter. This exciting nonlinear photoionization study is carried
out in collaboration with the attosecond laser group at the Lund Laser Center.
In January 2010 we initiated a study of graphene and graphene supported metal clusters.
The project has now been running for 3 years and we successfully studied metal particles
supported by grapheme, CO-induced sintering of the metal particles, intercalation of
molecules between grapheme and its support material together with the group of
prof. Thomas Michely, University of Cologne. Currently, our research is focused on
understanding: Simple reactions in the protected region between grapheme and its support
material, functionalization of grapheme, and how doping affects the chemistry of graphene.
In this project we will create model systems with a large fraction of catalytic active
metal oxide step sites and characterize their atomic scale structure mainly with Scanning
Tunneling Microscopy (STM) and high resolution X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (HRXPS).
Subsequently, we plan to measure the catalytic activity of the model systems and correlate
measured catalytic activity with the atomic scale structure of the step sites. The first
model system we started to study is a ultrathin FeO(111) film grown on a stepped Pt(111)