Pod 1 - Nano imaging and microscopy
Used for atomic and molecular imaging studies, pushing the boundaries of ultra-high resolution force imaging and measurement with atomic and molecular resolution far beyond current limits.
This annex to Physics houses a suite of of 3 laboratories where vibration, noise and electromagnetic disturbance have been drastically reduced, creating an "ultra-clean" environment for measurement and characterisation.
IsoLab has been designed to provide the most advanced environments for studying quantum systems in controlled conditions. The build has been made possible by generous donations from the Wolfson Foundation, the J.P. Moulton Charitable Foundation and the Garfield Weston Foundation, and an award from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council.
The building sits on its own massive concrete foundation, with three above-ground laboratories each contained in their own separate pod. In the basement of each pod sits a 50-ton concrete isolation block, accessible through a removable floor. Pod interiors are lined with material to shield acoustic and electromagnetic disturbance.
The scientists involved worked closely with the architects and builders to create a facility where isolation and quiet have been designed in from the start, and through every stage of the construction. Each pod is adaptable for future customisation, depending on use.
The pods sit inside a 350-ton concrete tank, extending from ground level down 5 metres to a thick foundation resting on a mixture of clay and gravel.
The basement of each pod is filled with a 50-ton C-shaped isolation block that floats on 7 independently controlled airsprings.
The entire inside surface of each pod, from basement floor to laboratory ceiling is coated with acoustic damping board, and lined with a custom-built metal plate Faraday cage. Pod 1 extends the acoustic shielding with a lining of foam tiles.
Each pod has its own separate earthing nest and is supplied with 3-phase & single phase to the exterior service area. The interior of each pod is supplied with two sets of independently filtered clean single-phase sockets, DC in a range of voltages, and optical fibre.
Atomically resolved microscopy and spectroscopy of nanostructured and molecularly self-assembled materials. We are exploiting scanning probe microscopy and ultra-high frequency laser vibrometry to reach new levels of precision for characterisation at the sub-nanometre and atomic scale.
Testing a quantum random number generator. Our invention turns the random nature of quantum mechanics into a stream of digital bits, based on the phenomenon of tunneling, where electrons travel through barriers in a probabilistic fashion.
Studying a new magnetic field sensor made from a combination of superconducting metals and graphene. The device only works at low temperatures, and is so sensitive that we are using it to see just how noisy the IsoLab environment actually is!
Professor of Low Temperature Physics
Professor of Nanoscience
50th-anniversary Lecturer in Nanoscale Materials Characterisation
50th-anniversary Lecturer in Physics of Functional Materials
Professor of Quantum Information and Royal Society Research Fellow
Professor of Experimental Condensed Matter Physics
Lecturer in Low Temperature Nanoelectronics