Stephen R. Clark

I am an Associate Professor (Senior Lecturer) in theoretical physics working at the University of Bristol. My research interests are pretty much anything with the word "quantum" attached to it, like quantum computation, quantum materials, quantum simulation, and so on . While I have been known to flirt with foundational issues on occasion, my main focus is increasingly grounded in trying to exploit various quantum phenomena in technology. 

I am also a visiting research scientist at the Max Planck Institute for the structure and dynamics of Matter in Hamburg. Previously I was a senior scientist in the Clarendon Laboratory at the University of Oxford, a research fellow at Keble College, and I have also worked at the Centre for Quantum Technologies in Singapore.

Research Highlights

  Me in St Lucia
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Recent Announcements

  • Emitting electrons through phonons
    Recently I worked on the theory supporting an experiment performed by my collaborators in Hamburg which has been published in Nature Materials 14, 883–888 (2015). They used a mid-IR laser to excite a phonon mode in a substrate and then observed with time-resolved soft-X-ray diffraction the melting of magnetic order in a thin Nickelate film grown on top of the substrate. 
    This showed that the melt front propagating into the film travelled faster than the speed of sound. We conjectured an electronic mechanism involving electrons being made mobile at the interface and scrambling the magnetic order as they move. This work now has a News and Views article accompanying it, Nature Materials 14, 859–860 (2015). 
    Posted Aug 28, 2015, 8:56 AM by Stephen Clark
  • Workshop on Dynamics of Complex Quantum Systems scheduled
    Last year in August I was on the organising committee for a workshop on the Dynamics of Complex Quantum Systems held at the Cumberland Lodge in the Great Park at Windsor. We have now found out that there is money for us to run the next workshop in this series at the same stunning location. It is scheduled for the 3rd-6th of August 2015 - so save this date.
    Posted May 4, 2015, 7:08 AM by Stephen Clark
  • Measuring quantum work relations
    You can find a nice article about one of my recent papers, R. Dorner, S. R. Clark, L. Heaney, R. Fazio, J. Goold, V. Vedral, Phys. Rev. Lett. 110, 230601 (2013), on a proposal to experimentally test work statistics and fluctuation relations at the phys.org site. Further to this our theoretical proposal has now been implemented in an NMR experiment in which one of my co-authors John Goold collaborated on.
    Posted May 25, 2014, 12:06 PM by Stephen Clark
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Currently my work has two major strands related to strongly-correlated electron systems. The first is the "quantum materials' control" project Q-MAC which is an ERC funded pan-European collaboration trying to use a combination of material design, quantum optics theory, as well as ultrafast laser and x-ray physics to realize ultrahigh temperature superconductivity. I work on this challenging long-term goal together with collaborators in Oxford, Hamburg, Geneva and Paris. 

The second strand is "tensor network theory"  TNT which is a powerful framework for understanding and computing the properties of interacting quantum lattice systems. The techniques and algorithms in this theory are essential for my work in unravelling the properties of strongly-corrletaed electrons driven far from equilibrium. 

For more details look at my research overview page.

I am also an editorial board member for Nature Publishing groups open access multidisciplinary journal Scientific Reports