Seventh Framework Programme
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The project “Electrical spin manipulation in electroACtive MOLecules” (ACMOL) has the ambitious goal of fabricating a switchable, room-temperature spin-polarizer employing electro-active and magnetic molecules, which are integrated into graphene-type electrodes modified with ferromagnetic materials. The combination of these molecules with ferromagnetic electrodes is a new route in spintronics. Exploiting the high stability of graphene, we aim to demonstrate for the first time good performance of the device at room temperature. The outstanding devices can be applied to a broad number of different technological and societal fields, such as high-density data storage, microelectronics, (bio)sensors, quantum computing and medical technologies. An external electric field will be applied to read and manipulate the state of the device, as well as its charge transport properties. The characterization of the electrical response will be carried out in a 3-terminal configuration composed of source, drain and gate. The charge transport properties of the molecular junctions will be investigated in a solid-state back-gate configuration, as well as in solution, employing an “electrolyte gate”.
In this way, the devices will operate as switches that can be exploited to read and write information, which is stored in the oxidation and magnetic state of each molecule. The project involves the synthesis of the functional moieties, the device fabrication and characterization, as well as DFT modelling, which will be based on a fully quantitative description of the electronic structure at non-equilibrium. To accomplish the objectives of the project, we have chosen an interdisciplinary approach with four young research teams representing expertise in synthetic chemistry, molecular self-assembly, molecular-scale surface electrochemistry, device engineering, and DFT-based mesoscopic spin-transport calculations.

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