The Department of Advanced Materials Science was established in 1999 with the aim of establishing a center of excellence concerning materials research. Our research subjects cover a wide variety of materials that can be considered complex many-body systems composed of as many as 1023 constituent nano-scale elements, which again are composed of even smaller atoms consisting of nuclei and electrons. The development of materials science has enabled us to comprehend and utilize a broad range of materials and their physical properties. However, materials science at the present stage allows us to deal with only a small fraction of the degrees of freedom of many-body systems. Our target is to fully explore the many additional degrees of freedom in order to establish new concepts and views, as well as to find novel ways of utilizing them. There seem to be two approaches to this challenge. One is to obtain insight using microscopic observations, and to control the events occurring in this nano-space. For this to be achieved, we develop and utilize high-resolution electron microscopy, scanning-probe microscopy, strong quantum-beams such as synchrotron and neutron sources, and 1st-principles simulations supported by super-computers.
The other approach is to use macroscopic observations of many-body effects such as strong electronic correlations, in order to construct new views or to develop new material processes by grasping the whole system. For this purpose we employ extreme conditions such as high magnetic fields, high pressure, low temperature, short pulse laser fields, non-equilibrium plasma states, rapid quenching, etc. Unifying these diverse efforts is the focus on synthesis and control of materials from macroscopic to microscopic dimensions.