Functional oxides based on the transition metal series display a wide spectrum of remarkable electronic properties including magnetism, superconductivity and metal-insulator transitions, which offer potential important properties for practical applications including colossal responses to external fields, switchable conductivity, and efficient energy conversion.
However, under these conditions for application, these systems tend to be driven far away from the equilibrium ground-state. In order to harness these materials for the future, one of the grand challenges is to understand how to map the non-equilbrium phase space both to seek conditions where new states emerge but also as a basis for the design of materials that will help meet the energy needs of the future. In this talk, I will touch on recent work combining forefront X-ray tools with ultrafast optical excitation to help us to scratch the surface of this problem.
Work at Argonne is supported by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Science, under Contract No. DE-AC02-06CH11357.