Olaiya A. Olokunboyo

Ph.D. Student Hopes to Establish the Connection Between Interlayer Alignment and Electronic State
Olaiya A. Olokunboyo

Olaiya Olokunboyo is a Ph.D. student studying condensed matter physics. His hometown is in Ayila, Ogunwaterside in Ogun State, Nigeria and he received a bachelor’s in physics from the University of Ibadan in Oyo State, Nigeria.

1. Why did you choose UNH for your graduate program? 

Over time, I have always loved to work with faculties active on the frontier of condensed matter physics (the quantum properties of the electronic structure of materials, to be specific). After reading through the theoretical works of Professor Jiadong, I was convinced he was someone I could work with, and that was why I chose UNH. Fortunately, after getting admitted, Professor Shawna does the experimental work I wanted, so I opted for her group.

2. What is your Research Focus?

With the advancement of experimental tools and machines to study the dynamical properties of materials at the quantum level, we look forward to understanding and answering questions about interlayer coupling and strong correlations in two-dimensional (2D) materials through the creation and characterization of twisted octahedral Tantalum Disulfide van der Waals heterostructures. One of the physical exploits I am eager to see is the charge density wave (CDW) moire pattern from a scanning tunneling microscope.

3. What are you hoping to accomplish with this research? How will it potentially impact society or day-to-day life? 

A question posed by Richard Feynman is, "What could we do with layered structures with just the right layers?” We hope to establish the connection between interlayer alignment and electronic state, the relationship between interlayer coupling and CCDW order, which will impact all CDW materials, and the first systematic exploration of quasicrystal moire physics through the correlation of nanoscale and mesoscale measurements on large twist angle heterostructures. Of course, there is more to its importance than I know, but I cannot overemphasize its usefulness in the design of electronic devices.

4. What do you enjoy most about your experience at UNH?

UNH has presented the people in pursuit of exploits in science and beyond, ranging from fellow friendly colleagues to selfless professors who are concerned about your well-being, not only science. UNH presents both physical and scientific beauty. 

5. What do you hope to do after your time at UNH?

This question comes to me every time; I would like to work in a research institute. Getting a post-doctoral position will be a great start and I hope to have my personal research laboratory later in the future. 

6. What is your advice for someone on how to best prepare for a graduate program? 

Know what you want, go for it, expect difficulties, and prepare for triumph.