Nanoscience, Nanomaterials and Nanotechnology Research (NNNR)

(Professor Jagdish Narayan’s group at NCSU)

Professor Narayan and his colleagues started nanomaterials research in the late 1970s and published the first seminal paper on nickel colloids (nanodots) in crystalline ceramics in Physical Review Letters in 1981.  These nanodots produced exciting modifications in optical and mechanical properties of ceramic materials and led to numerous publications, a U.S. patent and an IR-100 Award.  The nickel nanodots grew epitaxially inside their MgO host, despite the lattice misfit ranging from 3.0 percent to 31.3 percent on different faces.  This crystal growth is now understood to occur via domain matching epitaxy, where integral multiples of lattice planes match across the interfaces.  This research has now been extended to thin films, where nanodots can be grown in a controlled way via 3-D self-assembly with a recent US Patent.  The nanodot/nanograin has also been used in bulk and thin films to produce novel mechanical properties, making tougher and stronger materials for coating and related applications.  Connected nanodots or layers of varying thickness have also been used for quantum confinement of carriers in GaInN/GaN superlattices and enhanced light emission efficiency.  Kopin Corporation, working with NCSU, has used this “nanopocket” technology to create next-generation high-efficiency Kopin CyberLite LEDs.

Magnetic nanodots stand to revolutionize information storage.  Assuming 1 bit of information in each 6nm nanodot, we can achieve information storage beyond 10 Terabits per chip.  One terabit can store 25 million pages of information. Selected papers related to nanostructured materials, addressing electronic, photonic, optical and mechanical properties are shown below.

Latest Publication (In press June 2006):

Critical size for defects in Nanostructured Materials: Challenges and Opportunities in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (Link)


  1. J. Narayan, A. K. Sharma and J. F. Muth, “ Optoelectronic and microelectronic Devices including cubic ZnMgO and CdMgO Alloys-New Materials,” US Patent No. 6,423,983 B1 (July 23, 2002), Licensed by Kopin Corp.
  2. J. Narayan, A. K. Sharma and J. F. Muth, “ Optoelectronic and microelectronic Devices including cubic ZnMgO and CdMgO Alloys-New Processing,” US Patent Granted, Licensed by Kopin Corp.
  3. J. Narayan and A. Tiwari, “ Methods for Forming Nanodot Arrays in a Matrix Based on Differences of Free Energy of Oxidation, and Nanodot Structures Fabricated Thereby,” US Patent 5051-621PR Granted ( December 2, 2002).
  4. J. Narayan et al., “ Efficient Light Emitting Diodes and Lasers,” US Patent #6,881,983 (April 19, 2005)
  5. J. Narayan et al., “ Electrode for p-type gallium nitride based semiconductors,” US patent # 6,734,091( May 11, 2004).
  6. T. Rawdonwicz and J. Narayan, “ Growth and integration of epitaxial GaN and with silicon based devices,” US patent 2005/0124161A1 (June 9, 2005).
  7. J. Narayan, “Domain Epitaxy for Thin Film Epitaxy,” US Patent # 6,955, 985 (October 18, 2005).
  8. J. Narayan, “ Light-emitting diode device geometry,” US Patent # 6,847, 052 (January 25, 2005).

Patents Pending:

  1. Low-field Giant Magnetoresistance by J. Narayan and A. Tiwari : US Patent Pending.
  2. P-Type Doping of Zinc Oxide by H. Porter and J. Narayan: US patent Pending.
  3. Methods for Forming Single-Crystal Films of New Phase MoOx with Useful Properties by J. Narayan: US Patent Pending.
  4. Novel Compositions for Transparent Conducting Oxides by J. Narayan; US Patent Pending.

Nanostructured Materials

Nanostructured Optical, Magnetic and Electronic Materials