Research Funding: ERC Consolidator Grant to Venkata Kamalakar Mutta


In total, five researchers at Uppsala University have been awarded ERC Consolidator Grants for 2020. One of them is Venkata Kamalakar Mutta, Molecular and Condensed Matter Physics. The research funding will go to the project ‘Spin Engineering in Flexible and Functional Two-Dimensional Quantum Material Devices’.

ERC Consolidator Grant is aimed at researchers who recently have started a research group and want to strengthen their role of research leaders. The applicants should have the potential to be world leading within their field. At Uppsala University, five researchers have been awarded grants. In total, 2506 applications were received for the announcement of this dividend. 327 ERC Consolidator Grants were awarded, whereof 14 in Sweden.

Venkata Kamalakar Mutta have received 2 million euro for his project ‘Spin Engineering in Flexible and Functional Two-Dimensional Quantum Material Devices’. Below he describes the project and how he feels about his new funding.

What is it about?

“The project ‘Spin Engineering in Flexible and Functional Two-Dimensional Quantum Material Devices’ is about making fundamental advances towards enabling spin integrated circuits that can operate with ultralow power at ultrafast speeds, and making electronics intelligent at the very component level. The major impacts include a significant reduction in energy consumption in electronic devices as well as the development of novel neuromorphic hardware for advancing artificial intelligence,” says Venkata Kamalakar Mutta, Assistant Professor at Department of Physics and Astronomy, and continues.

What's your goal?

“The emerging class of atomically thin two-dimensional (2D) quantum materials provides unprecedented means for exploring and exploiting physical phenomena pertaining to the spin (magnetic moment) of electrons. In this project, we will design and realize experiments to determine how one can control, and how fast and how efficiently one can control spin phenomena involving spin currents, and spin order (magnetism), as well as realize their novel spin components. We will engineer spin currents and magnetism by tuning the interatomic separations in 2D quantum crystals. Employing these systems and phenomena, we will explore new spin functions and perform experiments to uncover their ultimate power efficiency and operation speeds.”

And of course, how does it feel to receive the grant?

“Surely, it is a fantastic feeling! This gives me the necessary resources to expand my team and our experimental capabilities, and opportunities for new collaborations. We can now test risky concepts to come up with innovations for the next generation of spintronic applications and intelligent devices. I am looking forward to the coming 5 years that I believe will be adventurous,” says Venkata.