Professor Stuart Parkin, IBM Almaden Research Center, San Jose, USA, has been awarded the 2014 Millenium Technology Prize by Technology Academy Finland (TAF), an independent foundation that was established jointly by Finnish industry and the Finnish state. This biennial prize is awarded for groundbreaking technological innovations and is worth one million euros. The award was presented at a special ceremony in Helsinki, Finland, on May 7, 2014.
Stuart Parkin is recognized for the development of magneto-resistive thin-film structures and other key applications of spintronics, which have led to the giant magnetoresistance (GMR) spin valve and magnetic tunnel junction (MTJ) memory cells, and thus enabled dramatic increases in the storage capacity of hard disk drives.
Stuart Parkin, born in Watford, UK, in 1955, obtained his Ph.D. in physics from the University of Cambridge, UK. After working as a postdoctoral researcher at Université de Paris, France, he joined IBM in San Jose, USA, in 1982, initially as a postdoctoral worker but he soon became a permanent member of the staff. Whilst working at IBM he also worked as a visiting professor in Singapore, Taiwan, and London. In late 2013, he was chosen for a Alexander von Humboldt Professorship, which he will take up at University Halle-Wittenberg, Germany, and he has also been recently recruited as the Director of the Max Planck Institute of Microstructure Physics, Halle, Germany.
Parkin has received numerous honors including the American Physical Society’s Prize for New Materials in 1994, the European Physical Society’s Europhysics Prize in 1997, the Humboldt Research Award in 2004, and the von Hippel Award from the Materials Research Society in 2012.
Selected publications by Stuart Parkin:
- Chiral spin torque at magnetic domain walls,
Kwang-Su Ryu, Luc Thomas, See-Hun Yang, Stuart Parkin,
Nat. Nanotechnol. 2013, 8, 527–533.
- Topological repulsion between domain walls in magnetic nanowires leading to the formation of bound states,
Luc Thomas, Masamitsu Hayashi, Rai Moriya, Charles Rettner, Stuart Parkin,
Nat. Commun. 2012, 3, 810.
- Reducing spin torque switching current density by boron insertion into a CoFeB free layer of a magnetic tunnel junction,
Xin Jiang, Rai Moriya, Stuart Parkin,
Appl. Phys. Lett. 2012, 100, 172407.