Prof. Dirk Grundler

Associate Professor

After studying physics at the University of Hamburg, Prof. Grundler did his doctorate in superconduction and biomagnetism at Philips’ research laboratories in Hamburg. He qualified as a lecturer in experimental physics at the University of Hamburg in 2001, specializing in spintronics. Prior to accepting his Chair at TUM, he worked as an assistant professor at the Institut für Angewandte Physik und Mikrostrukturforschungszentrum (institute for applied physics and microstructure research center) at the University of Hamburg. He joined the EPFL Institute of Materials in 2015.

Research Area

Magnonics is a research field in nanoscience exploring spin waves, i.e. magnons, to transmit and process information. Magnons are elementary spin excitations in magnetic materials which exhibit a wave-like state. These can either be localized or propagate through the solid.

Strikingly, the wavelength of magnons is orders of magnitude shorter than that of electromagnetic waves (photons) of the same frequency. Hence magnonics fosters the development of nanoscale devices and enables nano-optics with spin waves as well as high-density integration.

The magnonic crystal, i.e., the magnetic counterpart of the photonic crystal, is a paradigm of magnonics. Ferromagnetic materials with periodically modulated properties offer an artificially tailored band structure for spin waves consisting of allowed frequency bands and forbidden frequency gaps. Thereby the full control of the flow of spin waves is achieved.

We follow two approaches: the 'bottom-up' approach where Skyrmions (a kind of magnetic vortex) form a periodic lattice in helimagnets with lattice constants of down to about 20 nm, and the 'top-down' approach where we nanopattern ferromagnetic thin films.

Before magnonics turns into applications, there is lots of fundamental physics to be explored. This site provides an overview of our research on spin waves at the nanoscale.


BM 3142 (Bâtiment BM)
Station 17
CH-1015 Lausanne