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Research Fellows Directory

Emma Pugh

Dr Emma Pugh

Research Fellow

Organisation

University of Cambridge

Research summary

In my research I study phase transitions which need a quantum description of the world to explain what is happening. I am particularly interested in looking at the unusual transitions which can occur in some magnetic materials when the magnetic ordering temperature is suppressed. We have observed unusual new states, including new superconducting states. In a superconductor electricity is passed without loss of energy with zero resistance. We are looking at the inter-relationship between the magnetic, unconventional new quantum states, lattice structure and superconducting states. We use high pressure, low temperatures and high magnetic fields to tune the materials in to these new diverse states. Further understanding of superconductivity will have huge benefits to society as by increased understanding it is hoped this will lead to materials which superconduct at elevated temperatures and eventually to the discovery of room temperature superconductors. The ability of a superconductor to transmit electricity without loss of energy at room temperature would have huge implications for energy consumption around the world and would help reduce the rate of global warming. Another important aspect of my work is the continued development of high pressure methods. High pressure is an excellent new tuning parameter which can be used to accurately control matter. It physically varies the lattice spacing between atoms and in so doing pushes them into new states of matter. High pressure, low temperature and high magnetic field are powerful tools to the modern scientist. An increasing number of measurements are now able to be performed under high pressure and as such the technique is opening up in a wide range of subject areas including the earth sciences, physical and biological sciences. I am also using recent advances in high pressure synchrotron techniques in my studies.

Grants awarded

Novel Quantum Order and Unconventional Superconductivity

Scheme: University Research Fellowship

Dates: Oct 2001 - Sep 2011

Value: £7,929,086.64

Novel Quantum Order and Unconventional Superconductivity

Scheme: University Research Fellowship

Dates: Oct 2001 - Sep 2011

Value: £7,929,086.64