A Lancaster University physicist has been awarded a £1.4M EPSRC Career Fellowship over five years.
Dr Dmitry Zmeev is a member of the Lancaster Low Temperature group, which has a strong international reputation for performing state-of-the-art experiments at the lowest achievable temperature on earth.
He was selected after a competitive evaluation by the EPSRC, which said:“Our Fellowships aim to provide greater support to aspiring and current world-leading individuals who are delivering the highest quality research to meet UK and global priorities.”
Dr Zmeev said he was delighted with the Fellowship, which will enable him to start his own research group.
The Low Temperature group perform experiments on superfluids and other materials with wider applications in areas such as nano-electronics, cosmology and turbulence.
The subject of his research is superfluid helium 3He, a liquid which does not freeze down to absolute zero.
He said: “Ultralow temperatures allow quantum coherence effects to overtake the behaviour of this liquid on a large scale and it acquires a super power: it can flow without friction. 3He belongs to a class of materials that possess this property, other example being superconductors. The superflow in all of them is destroyed at velocities faster than a certain critical value.
“We have recently discovered in Lancaster that 3He is a surprise exception to this wisdom: under certain conditions the superflow survives at velocities much higher than the critical velocity.
“In my Fellowship I will scrutinize these supercritical supercurrents and try to pinpoint their nature.”
EPSRC is the main UK government agency for funding research and training in engineering and the physical sciences, investing more than £800 million a year in a broad range of subjects - from mathematics to materials science, and from information technology to structural engineering.