Dr Richard Rowan-Robinson

MPhys PhD

Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Research Associate


Full contact details

Dr Richard Rowan-Robinson
Department of Materials Science and Engineering
Sir Robert Hadfield Building
Mappin Street
S1 3JD

Richard Rowan-Robinson joined the Department of Material Science and Engineering in 2019. His research is themed around the design of functional magnetic materials, where his current position focuses on fabrication and design of magnetic high entropy alloys.

Richard gained his PhD from Durham University in 2016, and worked as a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Nottingham (2016) and Uppsala University, Sweden (2017- 2019).

His specialisms are in sputtering, thin film magnetism and magneto-optics, where he is using these skills to design high-throughput experiments to rapidly explore the large composition space available when designing high entropy alloys.


MPhys, University of Leeds 2012

PhD, Durham University, 2016

Research interests

High entropy alloys

These alloys are concocted to have no single base element, instead having many elemental components mixed in near equal atomic proportions. Competing thermodynamic contributions, including a high entropy of mixing, help to stabilise solid solutions with simple crystalline phases. The alloy composition can be further tuned to obtain nanoprecipitation and the formation of ordered phases alongside the solid solution, to influence the magnetic functionality.  Richard is interested in combining high-throughput experiments with computational methods for the design of high entropy alloys with functional magnetic properties useful for transformers, inductors, electromagnets and electromagnetic shielding.

Magnetoplasmonics and magneto-optics

Plasmonics allows the confinement of light on nanoscopic lengthscales. When coupled with magnetism, an external magnetic field can be used to control the optical properties of a material through enhanced magneto-optical effects.  Magnetoplasmonics combines the fields of magnetism and plasmonics in the realisation of nanostructured magnetic surfaces with applications in telecommunications and biosensing.

Thin-film, interfacial magnetism and spintronics

Exotic magnetic materials can be created by precisely layering nanometer thickness metallic films, creating artificial crystals where interfaces make up a substantial volume of the total material. These can be used to engineer magnetic properties that wouldn’t exist in naturally occurring materials. Such materials have practical significance for the field of spintronics, which aims to understand how the spin of the electron (which is responsible for magnetism) can be used to process or store information.


Journal articles