Our Researchers

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Prof. Nagarajan Valanoor


Building/Room number: E10 / 247
Telephone: +61 (0)2 9385 4263
Facsimile: +61 (0)2 9385 6565
Email: nagarajan@unsw.edu.au

Dr. Daniel Sando (Research Fellow)

Dr Sando’s research is focused on the growth of 2-dimensional electron systems (2DES) comprising oxide perovskite materials LaAlO3 and SrTiO3, by pulsed laser deposition (PLD). A specific aim involves the gating of such systems using ferroelectrics or multiferroics such as BaTiO3 or BiFeO3. He also works on domain wall nano-electronics and magnonics using BiFeO3.

Dr. Peggy Zhang (Postdoc Fellow)

Peggy characterises topological domains using piezoresponse force microscopy. The nanoscale ferroelectric domains she studies have topological domain structures of the smallest size so-far achieved. The rotated polarisation and enhanced electromechanical response of these domains, makes them a promising candidate for novel, low-energy memory devices.

Vivasha Govinden (Ph.D candidate)

Vivasha investigates ferroelectric coupling with the introduction of a spacer between ferroelectric thin films, leading to exotic ferroelectric domains that can contribute to a giant electromechanical response. An enhanced electromechanical response is key to applications in nanoelectronic sensors, memory and logic devices and electromechanical systems.

Jackson Wong (Ph.D candidate)

Jackson researches the novel electrical properties of Lanthanum Nickelates (LaNiO3) and its oxygen deficient phases in which a metallic-to-insulator and magnetic transition occurs. His focus is the correlation between the strain, composition and resulting electrical properties of the material.

Richard Winkler (Ph.D candidate)

Richard looks at exploiting the crystal structure of Lead Zirconate Titanate (PZT) to enhance functional properties, including the piezoelectric response. He is investigating the use of bilayers in which a rhombohedral PZT film induces a strain within a tetragonal PZT thin film causing a canting and enhancement of the in-plane polarisation.

Oliver Paull (Ph.D candidate)

Oliver specialises in fabrication and characterisation of thin film heterostructures. He uses pulsed laser deposition (PLD) and laser molecular beam epitaxy (LMBE) to fabricate the desired materials, and uses high-resolution X-ray diffraction, piezoresponse force microscopy (PFM), magnetometry and neutron scattering in characterization of the materials.

Jinling Zhou (Ph.D candidate)

Jinling investigates the complex phase transition mechanism of ferroelectric thin films. She uses chemical solution deposition (CSD) to fabricate rare-earth doped bismuth ferrite thin films and tailor their electromechanical properties by strain engineering and site engineering.

Yangyang Zhang (Ph.D candidate)

Yangyang’s research interest is study of interface and domain wall structure in ferroelectric thin films using transmission electron microscopy (TEM).

Yutian Wang (Master student)

Yutian’s research project focuses on the fabrication and characterization of chemical solution derived bismuth ferrite nanostructures. He also uses atomic force microscope to investigate the domain structures of these bismuth ferrite nanostructures.  

Po-Shen Lu (Master student)

Peter's research interest is ferroelectric thin film. The research focuses on fabricating BiInO3 thin film by pulsed laser deposition (PLD). He uses characterization methods including atomic force microscopy, x-ray diffraction and piezoresponse force microscopy to investigate thin film's properties.

Tianxu Huang (Undergraduate Honor student)

Tianxu’s research interest lies on intersection of electrical engineering and materials science, and physics and novel phenomena regarding electrical characterization of ferroelectrics.

Research Assistants

Our lab also has an excellent research assistant team, who is helping the labs with various experimental support.

Christie Lau (lab support on PLD, XRD, SPM)
Vicki Zhong (lab support on PLD, XRD, SPM)
Xi Hua Chen (lab support on PLD, XRD, SPM)
Ralph Bulanadi (lab support on PLD, XRD, SPM)
Philip Liam Stephenson (lab support on PLD, XRD, SPM)
Sophie Armstrong (lab support on PLD, XRD, SPM)


Rama Vasudevan (PhD 2013, Materials Scientist, Oak Ridge National Lab, US)
Julian Waler (PhD 2014, Postdoc researcher, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway)
Jeffery Cheung (PhD 2014, Process Engineer, ANFF UNSW)
Sonia Huang (PhD 2015, Research fellow, Toyota Technological Institute, Japan)
Heidi Cheng (PhD 2016, Research fellow, Monash University, Australia)
Fran Kurnia (PhD 2017, Postdoc fellow, Queen’s University, Belfast, UK)
Stuart R Burns (PhD 2019, Postdoctoral Associate, University of Calgary, Canada)
Paria S. M. Gharavi  (PhD 2019, Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Pennsylvania, US)

Jason Chen (PhD 2014, Product Development Engineer, DuPont Taiwan)
Vivian Liu (PhD 2014, Product Development Manager, Commonwealth Bank, Australia)
Ronald Maran (PhD 2015, Engineer, Fotowatio Renewable Ventures, Australia)
Solmaz Jahangir (PhD 2017, Product Manager, John Morris Group, Australia)