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Dr Gavin Bell


The focus of my research is the growth by molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) or chemical vapour deposition (CVD) of functional materials, especially applying the techniques of surface science to epitaxial crystal growth. These material systems include semiconductor / ferromagnet interfaces for spintronics, self-assembled nanostructures and 2D materials like graphene. As well as exploring the growth of such materials, I characterise their fundamental properties using a variety of techniques (e.g. photoemission, diffraction) and collaborate with other research groups and companies to apply them in advanced technologies (e.g. spintronic devices, sensors, quantum communications). I have an interest in applying theoretical technqiues such as density functional theory (DFT) and kinetic Monte Carlo simulation to understand the properties and growth of materials and nano-structures.

Bell research group

The research group, from left to right: Haiyuan Wang, Alifah Ab Rahman, Phil Mousley, Collins Ouserigha, me, Gwilym Enstone, Dr. Chris Burrows and Steph Glover. Most recent members (not shown here): James Bryant, Joseph Hillier and Sam Gibson, the department's first group of joint Particle Physics / Materials Physics students.

I work with several other Warwick groups: Magnetic X-ray Scattering, Microscopy, Theoretical Physics, Nano-Silicon and Superconductivity & Magnetism in Physics, and in Chemistry the Inorganic Semiconductor MBE group and Supramolecular Assembly group. I have several multi-group and external collaborations, and use a variety of central facilities such as synchrotron radiation sources.

We have recently completely refurbished the Surface, Interface & Thin Film Group laboratories and boast state-of-the-art capabilities in ultra-high vacuum science.

I am a founding director of the spin-out company UVdyne Ltd. which develops state-of-the-art ultra-violet light detectors, combining thin-film growth and surface science with technologies originally developed at CERN.

Teaching and Other Activities

I teach the core second year course on Quantum Mechanics and supervise the X-ray Diffraction and Ultrasound experiments in the Second Year Lab. I usually offer final year undergraduate projects either in theory/computation (typically based on DFT) or experiment (typically thin film growth and analysis). On the postgraduate side, I am a former Admissions Tutor and now coordinate Materials Physics Doctorates.

I have recently completed an Academic Fellowship project called Science, Maths and Music which is supported by IATL, Warwick's Institute for Advanced Teaching and Learning. One the the Fellowship activities is the development of a new interdisciplinary Science of Music module, now running for the first time. I am interested in playing and recording music, and recently worked with 3 undergraduate summer students on algorithmic music generation from scientific images. The Coull Quartet are involved with the teaching of the module. A Warwick-Monash Masterclass video is available about this course.

I am a member of the Institute of Physics (IoP) and Fellow of the Royal Microscopical Society. I review research proposals for EPSRC, the Royal Society and Warwick schemes (e.g. IAS and URSS) and review article submissions for many journals such as Physical Review and Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter. I was awarded a Certificate of Outstanding Contribution in Reviewing in 2015 by the Elsevier journal Applied Surface Science.

I am involved in the organisation of numerous scientific meetings and conferences. I co-developed the international conference series SemiconNano, the first meeting of which took place in 2006 in Italy. We subsequently held meetings in Japan (2009), Austria (2011), the United States (2013) and Taiwan (2015).

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Google Scholar publications
and citation records

ResearchGate profile (with
some links to publications)
LinkedIn profile