Slide 1.pngSlide 2.pngSlide 3.pngSlide 4.pngSlide 5.pngSlide 6.png

Pr. Jordi Sort

Departament de Física, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Spain


Talk Title
Enhanced energy efficiency in voltage-actuated magnetic nanoporous alloy films and patterned structures

Talk Abstract

Magnetic data storage and magnetically actuated devices are ultimately controlled by magnetic fields generated using electric currents. This involves significant power dissipation by Joule heating effect. To optimize energy efficiency, manipulation of magnetic information with lower magnetic fields (i.e., lower electric currents) is desirable. This can be accomplished by reducing the coercivity of the actuated material by, for example, an externally applied DC voltage (i.e., electric field).

A drastic reduction of coercivity is observed at room temperature in relatively thick (200600 nm), nanoporous (pore wall width < 10 nm) Cu-Ni and Co-Pt films, prepared by micelle-assisted electrodeposition, by simply subjecting them to the action of an electric field [1]. The voltage is applied across an electrical double layer using a non-oxidative liquid electrolyte (propylene carbonate with Na+ solvated species). Ab-initio calculations indicate that this effect, which is even more pronounced in patterned nanoporous structures, is mainly ascribed to changes in the magnetic anisotropy energy stemming from electric field-induced spin-dependent modifications of the magnetic density of states at the surface of the pore walls.

The large surface-area-to-volume ratio and the ultra-narrow pore walls of the system allow the whole film, and not only the topmost surface, to effectively contribute to the observed magnetoelectric effect. This allows for the observation of voltage-driven changes in coercivity that are much larger than those observed in some previous studies [2]. The voltage-induced decrease of coercivity could be used as an alternative to thermally-assisted magnetic writing in magnetic recording applications, since the latter is less energetically effective. The results from this work also serve to expand the already wide range of applications of nanoporous materials (hitherto in areas like energy storage or catalysis) and it opens new paradigms in the fields of spintronics, computation and magnetic actuation in general.

[1] A. Quintana, J. Zhang, E. Isarain-Chávez, E. Menéndez, R. Cuadrado, R. Robles, M. D. Baró, M. Guerrero, S. Pané, B. J. Nelson, C. M. Müller, P. Ordejón, J. Nogués, E. Pellicer, J. Sort, Adv. Funct. Mater. 2017, 27, 1701904.

[2] M. Weisheit, S. Fähler, A. Marty, Y. Souche, C. Poinsignon, D. Givord, Science 2007, 315, 349.

This Talk is addressed to all researchers in the Materials Science community working on energy efficiency, more in particular to those working on magnetic materials and nanoporous alloys.

Short Biography

Prof. Jordi Sort received his PhD Degree in Materials Science from Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB) in 2002 (Extraordinary Award). The topic of his PhD dissertation was the study of magnetic exchange interactions in ferromagnetic-antiferromagnetic systems. He worked for two years as Postdoctoral Researcher at the SPINTEC Laboratory (Grenoble) and subsequently stayed six months at Argonne National Laboratory (USA). He also performed long-term secondments at the Grenoble High Magnetic Fields Laboratory (five months) and at Los Alamos National Laboratory (four months). At present, Prof. Sort leads the “Group of Smart Nanoengineered Materials, Nanomechanics and Nanomagnetism (Gnm3)” at UAB, which focuses its  research activities on the synthesis of a wide variety of functional materials (electrodeposited films, lithographed structures, porous materials, bulk metallic glasses, nanocomposites) and the study of their structural, mechanical, magnetic and thermal properties. This research aims at enhancing the performance of these materials in new technological applications that go beyond the state-of-the-art. Prof. Sort’s research activity was awarded by the Catalan Physical Society (Jordi Porta i Jué’s Prize, 2000), as well as by the Spanish Royal Physical Society (Young Researcher Award in Experimental Physics, 2003) and the Federation of Materials Societies (FEMS Prize in Materials Science & Technology, 2015). Prof. Sort has supervised 10 PhD Theses and is currently co-supervising the work of 6 more PhD students. So far, Prof. Sort has published around 280 articles that have received approximately 6300 citations. He has issued 5 patents and has managed 23 national/international research projects. Prof. Sort has been personally appointed as Invited Speaker in more than 65 conferences. Recently, Prof. Jordi Sort has been awarded a Consolidator Grant from the European Research Council. His project, entitled "Merging Nanoporous Materials with Energy-Efficient Spintronics (SPIN-PORICS)", aims to integrate engineered nanoporous materials into novel spintronic applications. He is also the Coordinator of the “SELECTA” Marie Sklodowska- Curie Innovative Training Network (ITN-ETN), whose aim is to use electrodeposition for environmental sustainability applications. The Network gathers a total of 15 Partners, from throughout Europe, including 4 companies. Further information at:

Talk Keywords
Magnetoelectric effects, energy efficiency, nanoporous alloys, micelle-assisted electrodeposition.
Target Audience
Engineering students, post-doctoral researchers, industry and national laboratories researchers, professors
Speaker-intro video

The International Conference on Innovative Applied Energy (IAPE’18)