The Transregional Collaborative Research Center 173 Spin+X, now in the second four-year funding period, investigates spin phenomena from various perspectives by combining several scientific disciplines. It encompasses the whole range of spin research, spanning from microscopic properties via emergent spin functionalities to coupling to the macroscopic world. This approach constitutes a new discipline that we refer to as Advanced Spin Engineering. Spin+X is organized into two research areas and directed towards four related goals.
All Spin+X research projects are connected through a network of Supply Chains. The theory projects are additionally organized in the Spin+X Interdisciplinary Theory Network (Spin+ITN).
Spin+X seeks to use fundamental insights into basic and collective spin phenomena to identify pathways towards functionalizing them for new spin-based device concepts. Spin+X builds on an outstanding research infrastructure in physics, chemistry and engineering at the Technische Universität Kaiserslautern (TUK) and Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz (JGU), which are both at the international forefront of spin-related science and technology.
Spin+X is divided into two strongly connected research areas: In Research Area A, fundamental spin phenomena that underlie all basic effects and mechanisms in magnetism are studied. Of specific interest are fundamental interactions between spins as well as the coupling between spin and orbital degrees of freedom, which lie at the heart of electronic spin phenomena. Research Area B, on the other hand, focuses on functional spin phenomena. Of special interest are phenomena related to functional spin transport, as well as those that allow for the control and use of spin as a tool. Our work is structured in Supply Chains. Initially created in the first funding period, they have developed into a well-established framework to find and realize synergies between existing key questions. The five Supply Chains of the second funding period shift the focus from the fundamentals further towards spin functionalities, while still reflecting broad scientific interest and fitting the strengths of the consortium.
Spin+X has placed particular emphasis on gender equality issues and on improving work-family balance by taking advantage of a number of key measures implemented both at TUK and JGU and guided by the DFG research-oriented equality standards. Furthermore, the promotion of young scientists is a major interest: Spin+X with its interdisciplinary character comprises Ph.D. students from physics, chemistry and engineering. Training students with a focus on facilitating outstanding collaborations between the different scientific disciplines within Spin+X is established within our Integrated Young Researcher College (MGK). Beyond that, reaching a broader part of society and recruiting motivated and competent students for magnetism is an important issue in Spin+X outreach by taking advantage of modern communication networks and social media.