Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department


Major Professor

Hariharan Srikanth, Ph.D.


Andreev reflection, Half-metals, Spin transport, Spintronics, Biosensors


The unique properties of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) show a great deal of potential for nanoelectronic devices, spintronic devices, biosensing and chemical sensing applications. Their applicability as interconnects for spintronic devices derives from their one-dimensionality and theoretically predicted preservation of spin current. In this work, we combine an investigation of spin polarization in materials such as half metallic oxides in thin film and bulk form with studies on several aspects of CNTs for sensing and spin transport applications. These two areas of study are intimately related within the umbrella of spin-electronics and nanoscale sensors that are being pursued with great topical interest in recent times. A measurement system has been developed to perform Point-Contact Andreev Reflection (PCAR) in the presence of variable magnetic fields and temperatures. It was designed and built, accepted for patent by the USF, and submitted to the U.S. Patent Office. A study

of spin polarization in superconductor-magnet junctions has been performed over a wide range in magnetic fields (0 to 3T) and temperature (2 to 300K)on several systems including copper, strontium ruthenate, and chromium dioxide. Spin transport experiments have been extended to single walled carbon nanotube (SWNT) networks inorder to explore spin transport in nanotube networks for potential sensor applications.Carbon nanotube networks have been used as the electronic material for chemical and biological sensing where capacitance and conductance response to the adsorbtion of a chemical or biological analyte are simultaneously measured and a very fast response and recovery is observed. Chemical specificity has been investigated through different means since a goal of the U.S. Navy is to have an array of these sensors, each chemically specific to a unique analyte. Finally, research is ongoing in the analysis of our PCAR spectra in the strontium ruthenate series and the lanthinum strontiu

m manganite series to investigate the square root dependence of the background conductance data and the fundamental aspects of the fitting procedure by using a chi-square statistical model to more accurately determine the spin polarization, P.