Christopher McCooey - Student Profile
Current research project
Electron and Nuclei in Nanowires
For many years our group has worked on the question of how current flow in nanowires affects the dynamics of the atomic nuclei. Effects familiar from everyday experience occur at the atomic scale. For example, Joule heating can take place in atomic wires and can result in a large local temperature rise. Another exciting development was our demonstration that current can exert an additional, non-conservative force field on atoms, with the possibility of using current as the driver for atomic-scale engines, by analogy with how a stream can drive a waterwheel. At the same time, the energy transfer under the non-conservative forces poses a potentially very powerful failure mechanism for nanoscale conductors. The aim of this project is to study this energy transfer mechanism with the aim of prolonging the lifetimes of nanowires for the use in electronic devices.
MSci. Theoretical Physics QUBResearch interests
Current-Induced Nonconservative Forces