On-surface synthesis of carbon-based quantum spin systems

Due to the combination of solid theoretical foundations and diverse potential applications in key economic sectors, work is feverishly underway worldwide to realize so-called quantum materials. This involves creating artificial materials from building blocks such as quantum dots, superconducting circuits, or cold atoms trapped in optical lattices. However, this diversity stems from different trade-offs between versatility, size, variability, and robustness of the building blocks. Molecules, on the other hand, have the potential to strike the right balance between reproducibility, robustness, and versatility as building blocks for creating artificial quantum materials.

Our goal is to develop a bottom-up molecular approach to fabricate one- and two-dimensional quantum materials from nanographene molecules with unpaired electrons and from specifically functionalized graphene nanoribbons that exhibit well-defined collective quantum states. Our long-term vision is to develop such artificial carbon-based quantum materials into a materials platform for second-generation quantum technologies.
Our work will explore the potential and limitations of surface-assisted synthesis for the development of carbon-based spin systems and provide new insights into the fundamental quantum properties of the fabricated nanomaterials. The results will bring carbon-based nanomaterials a significant step closer to applications in future quantum technologies. The methods developed and the fundamental understanding gained in the project could thus become key elements for the development of industrially relevant technologies.

Prof. Dr. Roman Fasel

Prof. Dr. Roman Fasel
Head of nanotech@surfaces Laboratory

Phone: +41 58 765 4348