PhD Theses

Congratulations, Dr. Yu Chen, new ICMAB graduate!

Doctor Yu Chen from the Laboratory of Multifunctional Thin Films and Complex Structures (MULFOX) Group at ICMAB defended his PhD thesis on Thursday, 14 November 2019 at the ICMAB. His thesis "Artificial Synapses based on the Photoconductance of LaAlO3/SrTiO3 Quantum Wells" was supervised by Gervasi Herranz. Congratulations! Continue reading to know more about Yu Chen!

14 November 2019

yu chen cut red

Why did you choose the ICMAB?

Actually, I don't know. But I enjoyed studying at ICMAB during the past 4 years.

How would you explain your research to a non-scientific audience?

I studied the artificial synapses at the interfaces between two oxide materials: LaAlO3 and SrTiO3. The artificial synapses depend on the photoconductance of LaAlO3/SrTiO3 interfaces. To put in a few words, what I study is a kind of system whose features can be accumulatively changed under external conditions. 

What are the main applications of your research? Could you give us an example?

The main potential application is neuromorphic computing devices, e.g., neuromorphic vision, which can save time and energy by capturing images by refreshing pixel by pixel only when a change of light intensity is produced.    

From the lessons learnt at ICMAB, which one do you value the most?

My thesis writing training.

What will you miss the most from ICMAB?

I will miss the academic discussions with Gervasi, my supervisor.

How do you think this experience will contribute to your training and to your future?

This experience strengthens me in the academic and personal level.

What are your plans once you finish your PhD?

Looking for a postdoctoral position in a bit different topic.

What do you wish you had known at the beginning of your PhD?

I would like to know how to pass your PhD defense!

Why did you become a scientist? Which have been your role models?

If I could call myself a scientist, I would like to follow the steps of Richard Feynman, although now I am far away from that.

Which is your favourite female scientist?

 Tu Youyou, who discovered artemisinin and saved millions of lives. 

Describe in 3 keywords…     

Your research: artificial synapses, LAO/STO interface, photoconductance
Barcelona: Sunshine, Arts, football
Your experience at ICMAB: working, discussing, eating

Thesis title: Artificial Synapses based on the Photoconductance of LaAlO3/SrTiO3 Quantum Wells

by Yu Chen, Laboratory of Multifunctional Thin Films and Complex Structures (MULFOX) Group at ICMAB-CSIC

Date: Thursday, 14 November 2019
Time: 11:30 am
Venue: ICMAB - Sala d'Actes Carles Miravitlles

Inspired by neurobiology, neuromorphic computing is proposed to cope with complex cognitional tasks through emulating spiking neural networks consisting of artificial synapses, aiming at overcoming the von Neumann bottleneck in conventional computational paradigms. In this Thesis, we have investigated the optical properties of the LaAlO3/SrTiO3 interfaces, which can be exploited as artificial optical synapses due to their wavelength-dependent time-correlated photoconductance.

We discuss the physical origin of the observed correlated photoresponse in epitaxial LaAlO3/SrTiO3 interface. Additionally, we have explored the photoconductance of amorphous LaAlO3/SrTiO3 interfaces, where the conductance is sensitive to illumination conditions in well-lighted environments. We include a discussion about the perspective of using the persistent photoconductance of LaAlO3/SrTiO3 quantum wells to applications in neuromorphic vision.   

  • Dr. Gervasi Herranz, ICMAB-CSIC

PhD Committee:

  • President: Dr. Jean Fompeyrine,  IBM Research GmbH, Zurich Research Laboratory, Departament of  Neuromorphic Devices & Systems, Switzerland
  • Secretary: Prof. Valerio Pruneri, Institut de Ciències Fotòniques (ICFO) , Departament of Optoelectronics, Spain
  • Vocal:  Dr. María Teresa Gotarredona Serrano, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Instituto de Microelectronica de Sevilla, Spain

yu chen party red

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