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Department of Dielectrics

Institute of Physics of the Czech Academy of Sciences

group Dielectric and IR spectroscopy science Dielectric and IR spectroscopy group THz and pump-probe science THz science and technology group Photon and neutron scattering group Light and neutron scattering group Theory Theory and
group Solid materials science Solid-state materials science group Liquid crystal material science Liquid crystals

About us

Main activities of Department of Dielectrics cover experimental and theoretical investigations of high-permittivity insulators like liquid crystals, ferroelectrics, multiferroics, piezoelectrics, semiconductor nanostructures, and low-loss materials.

Photo of people of Dielectrics
Our mission: Understanding the materials for which the frequency dependence of dielectric function can be probed by capacitance, waveguide or optical techniques. Experimental research in the Department of Dielectrics is mostly based on dielectric, infrared, time-domain THz, Raman and neutron spectroscopy, but also calorimetry, nonlinear optics and scanning probe microscopy measurements. The information on the core research activities organized within our six principal research groups can be accessed through the following links:

The most significant fresh scientific results of our deparment are listed in the section Highlights.

Oncoming seminars & workshops
17.05.2022 10:00, Na Slovance 2, main lecture hall
Polarons at ferroelectric domain walls in BiFeO3
Sabine Körbel
Institute of Solid State Theory and Optics, Friedrich Schiller University of Jena, Germany
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workshop workshop
23.-27.5.2022, Harrachov, Czech Republic

News & Public

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Václav Janovec has passed away

One of the founders of the Department of Dielectrics, outstanding scientist, editor and teacher, enthusiastic promoter of symmetry approaches to ferroic phase transitions and domain boundaries, Prof. Václav Janovec, our beloved friend and colleague Vašek, has passed away on February 16, 2022, at the age of his almost complete 92.

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15.02.2022 Award

Alexey Bubnov took the 2nd place in the FZU Photo Competition 2021

Alexey Bubnov defended his second place in the FZU Photo Competition 2021. Moreover, he obtained 4th and 10-11th places for his images of liquid crystal textures in polarised light microscope. Futhermore, Maryam Mansoori Kermani and Fedir Borodavka got 5-9th and 10-11th place, respectively.

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05.11.2021 Research

Picosecond nonlinear optoelectronics in graphene

Petr Kužel and Vaisakh Chelod Paingad in collaboration with colleagues from the Charles University described nonlinear behavior of charge carriers during early times after pulsed optical excitation in epitaxially grown graphene layers. The time evolution of the system is determined by nonlinear electronic response of graphene, which opens the possibility of the increase of the speed of optoelectronic elements [Adv. Funct. Mater. 31, 2105763 (2021)].

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18.10.2021 Award

Second place for Pavel Baláž in Photogenic Science Competition 2021

A photo of (un)usual window cleaning during home office brought the second place to Pavel Baláž in the category of ‘Scientists and Home Office’. The competition is organized by the Czech Academy of Sciences and by the association Science is Alive! (Věda žije! in Czech) and its aim is to promote science by intriguing photos taken by scientists.

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30.09.2021 Award

Karel Tesař took the 2nd place in the Falling Walls Lab competition

Karel Tesař was awarded for 'breaking the wall' with his project 'Post sternotomy chest pain' at Falling Walls Lab Wroclaw on 29 September 2021.

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16.04.2021 Research

Subterahertz collective dynamics of polar vortices

An artist take on the 'whirling' vibrational mode revealed in the polar vortex structure of PbTiO3/SrTiO3 superlattices [Nature 592, 376 (2021)] to highlight the front cover of the April issue of Nature.

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Latest Highlights
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Multidomain ordered metal–ferroelectric superlattices

By combination of advanced experimental techniques and phase-field simulations, we found that electric dipoles in superlattices, composed of layers of a ferroelectric material separated by thin metallic spacers, form an unusual pattern of nanoscale domains that order in three dimensions. These ferroelectric multidomain ordered superlattices exhibit an outstanding dielectric response and their engineered modulated structural and electronic properties can be controlled using electric field [Nat. Mater. 20, 495 (2021)].

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Ferroelectric and antiferroelectric phases in liquid crystalline compounds with terphenyl in the molecular coere

We designed a new type of antiferroelectric liquid crystalline structure with terphenyl in the molecular core and two lactate units attached to the chiral chain [J. Mol. Liq. 336, 116267 (2021)].

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New material for 5G mobile networks

Epitaxial strained thin films of (SrTiO3)n-1(BaTiO3)1SrO were found to be a promising new material for mobile network of the 5th generation [Nature Mater. 19, 176 (2020)].

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Ferroelectric phase transition in water molecules localized in mineral cordierite

We discovered that hydrogen bonds are eliminated and the Coulombic interactions dominate in water molecules localized in nano-channels of mineral cordierite. Their dipole moment is perpendicular to the channel axis c and our dielectric spectroscopy study have revealed their ordering at ~3 K. The critical relaxation tending to this ordering is polarized along the a-axis direction and lies in the radiofrequency range. Spontaneous polarization measurements yield the saturated value of ~3 nC/cm2 at 0.3 K [Nat. Commun. 11, 3927 (2020)].

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Making EuO multiferroic by epitaxial strain engineering

Optical soft mode driven ferroelectric phase transition was discovered in IR spectra of tensile strained ferromagnetic EuO thin films [Commun. Mater. 1, 74 (2020)].

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Latest Key Articles

H. Hempel, T. J. Savenjie, M. Stolterfoht, J. Neu, M. Failla, V. C. Paingad, P. Kužel, E. J. Heilweil, J. A. Spies, M. Schleuning, J. Zhao, D. Friedrich, K. Schwarzburg, L. D. A. Siebbeles, P. Dörflinger, V. Dyakonov, R. Katoh, M. J. Hong, J. G. Labram, M. Monti, E. Butler-Caddle, J. Lloyd-Hughes, M. M. Taheri, Jason B. Baxter, T. J. Magnanelli, S. Luo, J. M. Cardon, S. Ardo, and T. Unold

Predicting solar cell performance from terahertz and microwave spectroscopy

Adv. Energy Mater. 12, 2102776 (2022).
A. Singh, T. Hiroto, M. Ode, H. Takakura, K. Tesař, H. Somekawa, and T. Hara

Precipitation of stable icosahedral quasicrystal phase in a Mg-Zn-Al alloy

Acta Mater. 225, 117563 (2022).
M. Šindler, F. Kadlec, and C. Kadlec

Onset of a superconductor-insulator transition in an ultrathin NbN film under in-plane magnetic field studied by terahertz spectroscopy

Phys. Rev. B 105, 014506 (2022).
J. Yan and V. Janiš

Single-impurity Anderson model out of equilibrium: A two-particle semianalytic approach

Phys. Rev. B 105, 085122 (2022).
A. Kashir, M. G. Farahani, J. Lančok, H. Hwang, and S. Kamba

A grease for domain wall motion in HfO2-based ferroelectrics

Nanotechnology 33, 155703 (2022).
U. Trstenjak, N. Daneu, I. Rafalovskyi, J. Belhadi, D. Vengust, J. Hlinka, and M. Spreitzer

Polarization in pseudocubic epitaxial relaxed PMN-PT thin films

Appl. Phys. Lett. 120, 042901 (2022).

Last update: March 30, 2022 (admin)