Sheng Ran’s research aims to realize and understand exotic states of quantum materials, using combined techniques of bulk crystal synthesis, electric and thermal transport measurements under extreme temperature, pressure and magnetic field conditions, and neutron and high energy X-ray scattering.
Discovering pathways to experimentally realize quantum phases of matter and exert control over their properties is one of the central goals of modern physics, which holds promise for a new generation of electronic devices with currently inaccessible and likely unimaginable functionalities. With the explosion in the field of quantum materials in the past decade, it is conceivable that a vast number of new materials with unprecedented quantum states and properties are yet to be discovered. This is exactly what Dr. Ran’s research lab is dedicated to: discovery, synthesis, characterization and control of novel quantum materials with emergent electronic and magnetic states.
Of particular interest are topological quantum materials showing the coexistence of topology and other quantum phases, e.g., superconductivity, magnetism, charge density wave and ferroelectricity. Interplay of topology and these quantum phases gives rise to a variety of exotic quantum states, including the quantum anomalous Hall effect, topological axion states, Majorana fermions, some of which have potential applications for quantum computing and spintronics. Even though topological revolution has been the central theme in condensed matter physics in the past decade, theoretical prediction and experimental realization of such composite topological quantum materials has just started, and extensive experimental efforts to discover and characterize new systems are desperately in need.
2020-present: Assistant Professor, Washington University
2017-2020: Postdoctoral Scholar, University of Maryland/NIST
2014-2017: Postdoctoral Scholar, University of California, San Diego
2020 The Lee Osheroff Richardson Science Prize for North and South America