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Michael J. O’Shea


Condensed Matter Physics



Experimental condensed matter physics of rare-earth and transition metal magnets.  A short introduction can be found here. 

Rare-earth based thin films and nanoscale particles were prepared by several methods. Sputter deposition, magnetic measurements, and structural characterization facilities were built up over many years in my lab and in collaboration with other condensed matter physicists in the K-State physics department.  This work has been published in leading refereed international journals including Physical Review Letter, Physical Review B, Journal of Applied Physics, Journal of Magnetism and Magnetic Materials, and European Journal of Physics.  Work in my group involved:

·        Thin film and bulk nanostructured magnets based on Nd2Fe14B and SmCo5 were prepared by sputtering.  Structure and magnetic properties including coercivity and energy product were correlated.  See here for a discussion of size effects. The effect of size of the magnetic layers or particles, and the effect of an anneal in the presence of a magnetic field were examined.  See here and here for an overview of this work.

·        Magnetism, superconductivity and the effects of neutron irradiation were studied in several high temperature superconductors including YBa2Cu3O7-x. We were able to improve critical current values with the neutron irradiation.

·        The possibility of quantum mesoscopic tunneling was examined in several thin film rare-earth alloys with strong magnetic anisotropy.  Indirect evidence for such tunneling was found in several of these systems. 

·        The influence of random magnetic anisotropy on phase transitions and critical phenomena was studied at reduced temperatures down to  https://www.phys.ksu.edu/personal/mjoshea/CondensedMatterResearch/CondensedMatterResearch-Intro2_files/image004.png down to 6 ´ 10-5  In particular scaling in ferromagnetic systems and systems with strong random anisotropy were tested in this small reduced temperature range.  Interesting crossovers were seen as a function of the ratio of anisotropy/exchange strength and as a function of magnetic field. 




Parts of the above work were supported by grants from the National Science Foundation, the Army Research Office, and NATO. 

Complete publication list