December 2008: EPSRC/DSTL (National Institute for Materials Science) Grant Funded.

Research Grant "In-situ shock performance investigation of lightweight ceramic nanocomposites" in collaboration with Dr. Yanqiu Zhu (Principal Investigator) and Dr. Arthur Jones (Co-Investigator) from the Department of Mechanical, Materials and Manufacturing Engineering (Nottingham) has been funded. The research is aimed at the design and synthesis of advanced nanocomposite materials, elucidation and fundamental understanding of the "nanostructure - shock response" relationship, as well as prediction of the nanocomposites performance. Duration of the grant is 4.5 years.


December 2008: AIMPRO Meeting 2008.

On December 10-12 2008, the Institute of Materials Jean Rouxel (IMN) at Nantes, France hosted the 2008 AIMPRO meeting. The AIMPRO code employs spin-polarised self-consistent local density functional pseudopotential techniques allowing the determination of molecular and crystal structure, as well as calculations of the electrical, optical and mechanical properties of molecules and solids. Chris Ewels invited the developers and users of AIMPRO from 13 European Universities and Research Institutes to discuss recent progress.

The article in "Ouest France" newspaper.


November 2008: First Postdoctoral Fellow Joins the Group.

Dr. Tim Lillestolen takes up a 3-year postdoctoral position in our group from January 1st 2009. Tim graduated from the University of Tennessee in 2005. His first postdoctoral position was with Dr. Richard Wheatley at the University of Nottingham. Tim and Richard have developed the iterated stockholder method to accurately and reliably divide a molecule's electronic properties into its component atom parts. In our group, Tim will work on the description of weakly bound complexes and van de Waals interactions with density functional theory.


October 2008: A student from Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology takes prestigious stipend granted by the President of Russian Federation to Nottingham.

Olga Ershova, a final year M.Sc. student from the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (Russia), was awarded a prestigious grant of the President of the Russian Federation for abroad study in year 2009. Olga will join our group on February 21st, 2009 to work on applications of density functional theory to modelling the properties of graphene, the world's first single-atom-thick fabric which is stable, highly fexible, strong and remarkably conductive.


September 2008: Invited Lecture "Multiscale modelling of carbon based nanomaterials and applications to nanoelectronics and data storage" at the 2008 World Congress of WATOC.

The World Association of Theoretical and Computational Chemists (WATOC) is the major international organisation representing theoretical and computational chemists. The 2008 World Congress of WATOC will be held in Sydney, Australia from September 14-19, 2008. Held every 3 years, the WATOC is the main international conference in the field of computational chemistry which attracts strong participation from academia, industry and government.

Photographs from WATOC 2008.


September 2008: Invited Lecture "Multiscale modelling of nanomaterials: fundamentals and applications" at the TACC 2008 Conference.

The International Conference "Theory and Applications of Computational Chemistry" (TACC) is to be held in Shanghai, China from September 23-27, 2008, and will bring together a large number of the world's leading experts in computational chemistry. Within its auspices the University of Nottingham and Shanghai Jiao Tong University are organizing a Summer School entitled "Chemical Modelling for a Sustainable Environment". The aim of the Summer School is to highlight the role of chemical modelling in scientific aspects of a sustainable environment.

Photographs Shanghai and Ningbo in 2008.


July 2008: Career Acceleration Fellowship awarded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council.

A 5-year Career Acceleration Fellowship was awarded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) that addresses an EPSRC strategic priority "Nanosciences through engineering to applications". It is aimed at establishing a research group focused on the study of novel properties of materials at the nanoscale and new capabilities of electromechanical nanodevices based on carbon nanotubes.


June 2008: Insight Arcticle "Nanotube-based data storage devices" published in special issue "New technologies for data storage" of Materials Today (Elsevier).

In 2008, Materials Today, an international review magazine for materials science and technology, commissioned an insight article on carbon-nanotube-based electromechanical data storage devices. In the paper, we examine memory cells based on the bending of cantilever and suspended carbon nanotubes, and the relative motion of the walls of carbon nanotubes. These devices show fast write and read speeds, high cell density, and allow nonvolatile operation. (pdf)