Dr Nicola A Morley

Dr N A Morley

MPhys, PhD, MInstP
Lecturer in Material Physics

Department of Materials Science and Engineering
Sir Robert Hadfield Building
Mappin Street, Sheffield, S1 3JD

Telephone: +44 (0) 114 222 5935
Fax: +44 (0) 114 222 5943

Email: n.a.morley@sheffield.ac.uk

Nicola Morley was appointed as Lecturer to the department in May 2005. Her research is based in the Sheffield Centre of Advanced Magnetic Materials and Devices (SCAMMD). Previously, she was a postdoctoral research assistant in the SCAMMD group at the University of Sheffield (2003-2005), which was originally based in the Department of Physics and Astronomy, but moved in July 2004 to the Department of Materials Science and Engineering. She was awarded her PhD from the University of Durham in 2003, and graduated from the University of Oxford in 1999 with a MPhys in Physics.

Research interests

Her research centres on the understanding and development of magnetic films to be used in magnetic devices and sensors. The main research areas are:

Fe-based Magnetostrictive Films and Devices
Research is focussed on the fabrication and characterisation of Fe-based magnetostrictive film, including Fe-Co and Fe-Ga for MEMS device applications. Fabrication techniques include a state of the art co-sputter-evaporation deposition system, RF/DC sputter system and an evaporator. A wide range of characterisation techniques are used, which include XRD, AFM/MFM, MOKE magnetometry and resistance measurements, as well as a central facilties (ESRF, France, diamond, UK). The main aim of the work is to understand the relationship between the magnetostriction, microstructure and magnetisation. The work has also involved the development of magnetostrictive MEMS devices, which includes magnetostrictive energy harvesters and mass MEMS sensors.

Organic Spintronics
This research investigates the spin transport within organic semiconductors, including the development of room temperature organic spin-valves. The spin transport has been investigated using a range of techniques including magnetoresistance, XPS, MOKE magnetometry, AFM and muon spectroscopy. The main aims are to understand how the interfaces influence the spin transport in organic spin-valves and develop novel organic spin devices, such as the spin switch. Research has studied both lateral and vertical devices at room temperature.

This research involves studying multilayer multiferroics to investigate how the optical, electrical and magnetic properties are linked within the hetrostructures. Work has studied how the interfaces influence the overall properties of the structures. Characterisation techniques include XRD, SEM, TEM, AFM/MFM, MOKE magnetometry and electrical measurements.

Professional activities

  • Member of the Muon Facility Access Panel.
  • Programme Chair of SpinOS 2012
  • Guest Editor for Synthetic Metals special edition (2012)

Selected recent publications

  • N A Morley, H AlQahtani, M P P Hodges, M R J Gibbs, M Grell and D J Morgan, “Study of Polymer-Magnetic interfaces using XPS” Applied Surface Science, 265, 570-577, (2013)
  • S. Kotapati, A. Javed, N. Reeves-McLaren, M. R. J. Gibbs and N. A. Morley, “Effect of the NiFe thickness on the magnetic properties of NiFe/FeCo bilayers” Journal of Magnetism and Magnetic Materials, 331, 67-71 (2013)
  • J Dean. M T Bryan, N A Morley, G Hrkac, A Javed, M R J Gibbs and D A Allwood, “Numerical study of the effective magnetocrystalline anisotropy and magnetostriction in polycrystalline FeGa films” Journal of Applied Physics, 110, 043902 (1 - 5), (2011)
  • L Schulz, L Nuccio, M Willis, P Desai, P Shakya, T Kreouzis, V K Malik, C Bernhard, F L Pratt, N A Morley, A Suter, G J Nieuwenhuys, T Prokscha, E Morenzoni, W P Gillin and A J Drew, “Engineering spin propagation across a hybrid organic/inorganic interface using a polar layer” Nature Materials, 10, 39 - 44, (2011)
  • A Javed, T Szumiata, N A Morley and M R J Gibbs, “An investigation of the effect of structural order on magnetostriction and magentic behaviour of Fe-Ga thin films” Acta Materialia, 58, 4003 - 4011 (2010)
  • A Javed, N A Morley and M R J Gibbs, “Structure, Magnetic and Magnetostrictive Properties of as-deposited Fe-Ga thin films” Journal of Magnetism and Magnetic Materials, 321, 2877 - 2882 (2009)
  • N A Morley, A Rao, D Dhandapani, M R J Gibbs, M Grell and T Richardson, “Room temperature organic spintronics” Journal of Applied Physics, 103, 07F206, (2008)
  • N A Morley, S- L Yeh, S Rigby, A Javed and M R J Gibbs, “Development of a co-sputter-evaporation chamber for Fe-Ga films” Journal of Vacuum Science and technology A, 26, 4, 581 - 586 (2008)
  • A J Drew, J Hoppler, L Schultz, F L Pratt, P Desai, P Shakya, T Kreouzis, W P Gillin, A Suter, N A Morley, V Malik- Kumar, H Bouyanfif, K W Kim, A Dubroka, F Bourqui, C Bernhard, R Scheuermann, T Prokscha, G J Nieuwenhuys and E Morenzoni, “Direct measurement of the spin polarization of injected electrons into the spacer layer of an organic spin valve” Nature Materials, 8, 2, 109 - 114 (2008)
  • A J Drew, F L Pratt, J Hoppler, L Schultz, V Malik- Kumar, N A Morley, P Desai, P Shakya, T Kreouzis, W P Gillin and R Scheuermann, “Intrinsic mobility limit for an anisotropic electron transport in Alq3” Physical Review Letters, 100, 116601, (2008)

Research group

Research students:
Weigang Yang (Interfaces in hetrostructures)
Shakirah Mohd Amran (Planar organic spin-valves)

Project students:
Gary Backman (Magnetostrictive Energy Harvesters)
Cindy Nshuti (Modelling Energy Harvesters)
Aravind Lingam (Delta-E Effect in magnetostrictive films)