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Materials Theory Group


(Above left) Department of Materials Science and Metallurgy building, West Cambridge site, University of Cambridge. (Middle) Inauguration of the Joint Research Center with Profs. Lindsay Greer (left) and Motoko Kotani (right), May 2012. (Right) Advanced Institute for Materials Research Main Building, Katahira Campus, Tohoku University, Sendai. [Image credits: 1, 2, 3.]

The Department of Materials Science and Metallurgy (MSM) in Cambridge is home to a Joint Research Centre between the Universities of Cambridge, and the Advanced Institute for Materials Research (AIMR) at Tohoku University in Sendai, Japan.

In the week of 24-28 August 2020, we will be hosting a Joint Online Workshop, bringing together researchers from MSM and AIMR for a series of seminars.


Workshop Format

Sessions will take place from 0900-1100 (BST) / 1700-1900 (JST) each day. Talks will be held entirely online using Zoom.



To receive Zoom links for the talks (via email), please complete the short form here:

Registration is free.



Please click the talk titles to see abstracts (where they have been provided) via

Monday 24 August 2020

Energy Devices

Session Chair: Professor Chris Pickard

9:00—9:10 (BST)  |  17:00—17:10 (JST)

Professor Lindsay Greer (MSM)

Welcome address and introduction

9:10—9:40 (BST)  |  17:10—17:40 (JST)

Professor Shin-Ichi Orimo (Director of AIMR)

Advanced Hydride Research for Energy Device Application

9:40—10:10 (BST)  |  17:40—18:10 (JST)

Professor James Elliott (Deputy HoD, MSM)

Modelling of polyelectrolyte thin films for fuel cell applications

10:10—10:30 (BST)  |  18:10—18:30 (JST)

Dr Xavier Moya (MSM)

Barocaloric materials for zero-carbon heating and cooling

10:30—10:50 (BST)  |  18:30—18:50 (JST)

Dr Bonan Zhu (MSM / UCL)

Interface structures between fluorite and perovskite materials

10:50—11:10 (BST)  |  18:50—19:10 (JST)

Associate Professor Akichika Kumatani (AIMR)

Recent Advances in Scanning Electrochemical Microscopic Analysis and Visualization


Tuesday 25 August 2020

Electron Microscopy and Spectroscopy

Session Chair: Associate Professor Susumu Ikeda

9:00—9:30 (BST)  |  17:00—17:30 (JST)

Professor Paul Midgley FRS (HoD, MSM)

Electron Tomography and Multi-Dimensional Electron Microscopy

9:30—10:00 (BST)  |  17:30—18:00 (JST)

Professor Yuichi Ikuhara (AIMR)

Atomic-Scale Dynamic Observations of Grain Boundary and Surface Phenomena

10:00—10:20 (BST)  |  18:00—18:20 (JST)

Professor Caterina Ducati (MSM)

STEM studies of hybrid perovskite solar cells

10:20—10:40 (BST)  |  18:20—18:40 (JST)

Dr Kazutoshi Inoue (AIMR)

Arrangement and Hierarchy of Polyhedral Units in Tilt Grain Boundaries

10:40—11:00 (BST)  |  18:40—19:00 (JST)

Dr Emilie Ringe (MSM)

Plasmonic Magnesium Nanoparticles


Wednesday 26 August 2020

Mathematics, Data Science and Materials

Session Chair: Professor James Elliott

9:00—9:30 (BST)  |  17:00—17:30 (JST)

Professor Chris Pickard (MSM/AIMR)

Stochastic sampling of material structure space

9:30—10:00 (BST)  |  17:30—18:00 (JST)

Professor Gábor Csányi (Department of Engineering, Cambridge)

Machine learned force fields and potential energy surfaces

10:00—10:20 (BST)  |  18:00—18:20 (JST)

Dr Andreas Dechant (Kyoto University / AIMR)

Standard Realization of Carbon Structures

10:20—10:40 (BST)  |  18:20—18:40 (JST)

Associate Professor Kazuto Akagi (AIMR)

Topological Data Analysis for Materials Science

10:40—11:00 (BST)  |  18:40—19:00 (JST)

Dr Bingqing Cheng (Trinity College; Department of Physics, Department of Chemistry, Cambridge)

Ab initio thermodynamics with the help of machine learning


Thursday 27 August 2020

Bio/Soft Materials

Session Chair: Associate Professor Kazuto Akagi

9:00—9:30 (BST)  |  17:00—17:30 (JST)

Professor Ayumi Hirano (AIMR)

In vitro Reconstruction of Neuronal Networks

9:30—10:00 (BST)  |  17:30—18:00 (JST)

Professor Ruth Cameron (MSM)

Materials for Regenerative Medicine

10:00—10:20 (BST)  |  18:00—18:20 (JST)

Professor Hayato Chiba (AIMR)

Dynamics of Neuronal Gamma Oscillations on a Random Graph

10:20—10:40 (BST)  |  18:20—18:40 (JST)

Dr Tom Bennett (MSM)

The Changing State of MOFs and Hybrid Perovskites: Liquids, Glasses, and Extreme Conditions

10:40—11:00 (BST)  |  18:40—19:00 (JST)

Associate Professor Hiroshi Yabu (AIMR)

Biomimetic Functional Materials Based on Self-Organization of Polymers


Friday 28 August 2020

Topological Materials

Session Chair: Professor Lindsay Greer

9:10—9:40 (BST)  |  17:10—17:40 (JST)

Associate Professor Tomoki Ozawa (AIMR)

Topological Phenomena beyond Solid-state Systems

9:40—10:00 (BST)  |  17:40—18:00 (JST)

Dr Max McGinley (Trinity College; Department of Physics, Cambridge)

Fragility of time-reversal symmetry protected topological phases

10:00—10:20 (BST)  |  18:00—18:20 (JST)

Professor Takafumi Sato (AIMR)

Electronic Structure of Novel Topological Materials Studied by ARPES

10:20—10:40 (BST)  |  18:20—18:40 (JST)

Dr Bartomeu Monserrat (MSM)

Modelling topological materials at finite temperature

10:40—11:00 (BST)  |  18:40—19:00 (JST)

Dr Max Lein (AIMR)

On Choosing a Physically Meaningful Topological Classification for Non-Hermitian Systems


Organising Committee

Professor Chris Pickard (MSM/AIMR)

Associate Professor Kazuto Akagi (AIMR)

Dr Joseph Nelson (MSM/AIMR)

Associate Professor Susumu Ikeda (AIMR)

The committee gratefully acknowledges organisational assistance from WPI-AIMR (Tohoku University), and funding from JSPS Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research on Innovative Areas: Discrete Geometric Analysis for Materials Design.


AIMR website

A website for this workshop is also available at AIMR:



Please contact Dr Joseph Nelson (jn336 @ in the first instance.