CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholars 2022-2024
Alex Frañó is a condensed matter experimentalist whose research intersects fundamental materials science, neuromorphic computing, and mesoscopic self-assembly phenomena. His research group specifically looks at strongly correlated electron systems, also known as “quantum materials” because of the baffling properties of the electrons in these materials, and various forms of x-ray scattering tools to probe them. They are exploring ways to use the properties of these materials to mimic some of the behaviours found in the brain, and potentially lay the groundwork for energy-efficient ‘neuromorphic’ computers. This research has brought Frañó closer to his long-lasting ambition of intersecting physics and creativity. As a grand goal, he aims to develop artificial neural networks that feature brain-like properties such as creative thinking by tapping into the emergent properties of strongly correlated electron systems.
- CAREER, National Science Foundation, USA, 2022
- FECS Diversity & Inclusion Award, American Physical Society, 2022
- Cottrell Scholar, Research Corporation for Science Advancement, USA, 2021
- Sloan Research Fellow, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, 2020
- Goteti, U. et al. (2021) Low-temperature emergent neuromorphic networks with correlated oxide devices, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 118, e2103934118 (2021). DOI: doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2103934118
- H.-T. Zhang, et al. (2020), Perovskite Neural Trees, Nature Communications 11, 2245 DOI: doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-16105-y
- A. Ruiz, et al. (2021) Magnon-spinon dichotomy in the Kitaev hyperhoneycomb β−Li2IrO3, Phys. Rev. B 103, 184404 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevB.103.184404
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