CREAM group

The energy and information technologies, challenges of the 21st century, require the development and design of new electronic materials which allow the fabrication of better, faster, and more reliable devices. For example, for energy transport, storage superconductors which operate at higher temperatures than the existing ones would be tremendously beneficial. The most intrinsic, and the most reliable, information about a novel material is obtained in its single crystalline form, where the influence of defects, dislocations, impurities and grain boundaries are minimized.   

The specific objective of CREAM, Competence in Research of Electronically Advanced Materials is to synthesize state-of-the-art specimens of electronic and magnetic materials at all length scales, from nano to bulk, with several crystal growth techniques. These are: hydrothermal synthesis, self-flux method, chemical vapour transport, high pressure synthesis. The crystals are the subject of in-depth investigation by various experimental techniques present in the laboratory, at EPFL and broader. The data obtained on these high quality samples are an essential input for theoretical modeling, and for future applications. For application purposes, we have a technology for thin film preparation, as well.

Starting with July 1st 2012 a new Service of Single Crystal Growth Facility is created headed by Dr. Arnaud Magrez. Its members are Mr. Philippe Bugnon and Mr. Helmuth Berger (consultant). There is a strong collaboration between this service and CREAM..


Prof. Davor Pavuna







Dr. Sergiy Katrych Dr. Luka Ciric Dr. Ayat Karimi Dr. Daniela Lagrange


Dr. Rosendo Sanjines


Prof. Janusz Karpinski



Autoclave for hydrothermal synthesis

Furnace room for the growth of nanostructures

Furnace for high pressure synthesis

Thin film preparation chambers


Examples of single crystals grown in the laboratory

Magneti (upper panel) and organic crystals Vanadium-based 1D (upper) and Dichalcogenides.

Doped Anatsae single crystals Carbon nanotubes and inorganic nanowires

Representative publications

[1] T. Bollinger, G. Dubuis, J. Yoon, D. Pavuna, J. Misewich, I. Božović, Superconductor-insulator transition in La(2-x)Sr(x)CuO(4) at the pair quantum resistance , Nature, 472 , 458-460 (2011).
[2] Leininger Ph.; Ilakovac V.; Joly Y.; et al. Ground State of the Quasi-1D Compound BaVS(3) Resolved by Resonant Magnetic X-Ray Scattering , Physical Review Letters 106, 167203 (2011).
[3] Eichberger M. Schaefer H., Krumova M., H. Berger et al., Snapshots of cooperative atomic motions in the optical suppression of charge density waves, Nature, 468, 799-802 (2010).
[4] Shetty A. R.; Karimi A., Texture change through film thickness and off-axis accommodation of (002) planes, Applied Surface Science 258, 1630-1638 (2011).
[5] Sanjines R.; Abad M. D.; Vaju Cr; et al. Electrical properties and applications of carbon based nanocomposite materials: An overview, Surface & Coatings Technology, 206, 727-733 (2011).