Condensed matter is the most common form of matter in our world: semiconductors, metals, magnets, and superconductors, to name a few. Condensed matter physics (CMP) is the field of research on those matters. Condensed matter physicists are keen on understanding the electrical, thermal, magnetic, optical, and mechanical properties of condensed matters from fundamental principles of physics.
The research activities of CMP at SNU are focused on several key issues in CMP such as new materials, emerging phenomena, correlation effects, topological effects, compound semiconductors, high-temperature superconductors, surfaces, interfaces, synthetic metals, transition and rare-earth metal oxides, quantum dots and wells, magnetism and spintronics, and low-temperature properties. The experimentalists in CMP at SNU use a variety of experimental methods including materials growth, transport measurements, optical spectroscopy, photoemission, neutron scattering and scanning tunneling spectroscopy. The materials properties are often measured under extreme conditions, e.g, at ultra-low temperatures, at high pressures or in high magnetic fields. The theorists in CMP at SNU have specialties in theoretical and computational methods such as many-body, field-theoretic techniques, group theory, and density-functional-theory methods.
Since the important problems in contemporary CMP are often difficult to solve, they require specialties from many different areas within and sometimes even outside of CMP. With over 20 faculty members in CMP at SNU covering several research fields and methods, active collaborations are being sought among different groups in the department, resulting in big synergy. Such activities are also extended to domestic and international collaborations.