Area of investment and support

Area of investment and support: Condensed matter: electronic structure

This research area addresses the links between electronic structure and material properties.

Partners involved:
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)

The scope and what we're doing

This research addresses the links between electronic structure and material properties. It includes research into correlated electron systems and novel materials (for example topological insulators), as well as semiconductor physics.

This is a strong research community producing high quality work across a wide range of topics. We will promote links to other areas (including condensed matter – magnetism and magnetic materials, and spintronics) to ensure that the UK achieves a world-leading position in fields such as topological spintronics.

We will make sure this area continues to produce research on core topics such as strongly correlated electrons systems and the electronic structure of 2D materials, which pose major scientific challenges.

We aim to have:

  • a community which continues to produce high quality research on fundamental topics such as strongly correlated electron systems
  • maximised opportunities arising from research that links novel topological states and quantum information, and that contributes to new quantum technologies.


The UK benefits from world-leading characterisation facilities at Diamond Light Source and the ISIS Neutron and Muon Source, and the high performance computing facilities at the Advanced Research Computing High End Resource (ARCHER2).

Major facilities are also available in Europe, such as the XMaS beamline at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF), the European Magnetic Field Laboratory (EMFL) and the European X-ray Free Electron Laser (XFEL).

Researchers should ensure that these facilities, alongside EPSRC investments in single-crystal growth, electron-beam lithography and molecular-beam epitaxy facilities, are used to their full potential.

Why we're doing it

This research area is strongly linked to these research areas:

The high quality of the work achieved in the field is recognised and well respected. Furthermore, the UK community has been very successful in securing funding from European sources, again indicating high international standing for UK research.

The community has access to world-leading characterisation facilities both in the UK and in Europe. In addition, the UK condensed matter theory community was one of the largest users of ARCHER, and this is expected to be the case with ARCHER2 as well. Access to these high-quality facilities, combined with access to scientists with extensive experience of using them, makes this area well-placed to deliver excellent research.

Researchers in this area typically focus on fundamental, discovery science. Knowledge gained in this field, however, can influence and contribute to a diverse range of technological applications, such as new materials with innovative properties and improved designs of photovoltaic (PV) cells.

This research area exhibits a good balance of researchers across career stages who are capable of delivering high class research. It currently offers appropriate training opportunities both for PhD students and for postdoctoral researchers.

View evidence sources used to inform our research strategies.

Past projects, outcomes and impact

Visualising our portfolio (VoP) is a tool for users to visually interact with the EPSRC portfolio and data relationships. Find out more about research area connections and funding for Condensed Matter: Electronic Structure.

Find previously funded projects on Grants on the Web.

Last updated: 31 July 2023

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