Photo of Prof J Roy Sambles

Prof J Roy Sambles

Professor of Experimental Physics

Email:

Telephone: 01392 724103

Extension: (Streatham) 4103

Roy studied Physics at Imperial College London, obtaining a first class honours degree in 1967 and a PhD in solid state physics in 1970. Following a 2 year PDRA in surface physics at Imperial in 1972 he was appointed lecturer in Physics at the University of Exeter, and was awarded the first ever internal promotion to a chair in Physics at Exeter in 1991. In 2002 he was elected a Fellow of The Royal Society for his contribution to a broad range of research on the fundamentals of melting, spin waves in metals, molecular rectification, liquid crystal optics and plasmonics. In 1998 he was awarded the George Gray medal of the Britsh Liquid Crystal Society, in 2003 he received the Thomas Young medal of the Institute of Physics and in 2012 he was awarded the Faraday medal by the Institute of Physics. He is a Council member of EPSRC, being also Chair of its Resource Audit Committee, in addition he provides scientific advice to the Government. He is President Elect of The Institute of Physics from October 2013, and will be President from October 2015.

He is presently academic lead of the Electromagnetic and Acoustic Materials research group, exploring among other things metamaterials for microwaves, 'designer' surface plasmons, the excitation of surface plasmons on gratings of reduced symmetry (zig-zag gratings) and the interaction of phonons (sound) with novel metastructures. His research work helps to underpin technological developments at BAE, QinetiQ, Sonardyne and Dstl. Further he is coauthor of several patents, some of which are being pursued to potential commercial development.

His most immediate research interests, being undertaken mainly jointly with Professor Hibbins, and involving a team of two research staff and seven research students is largely concentrated on metamaterials for microwaves and sound. This work is focussed on manipulating surface waves that carry energy tightly bound at an interface between two different media. The Exeter group is part of the £5M EPSRC Programme Grant “The Quest for Ultimate Electromagnetics using Spatial Transformations”, a collaboration with electrical and material engineers at Queen Mary and Oxford. Recently £400k of funding from DSTL was secured to support two PhD students, one of whom is working on acoustic metamaterials, both in air, and underwater, with the other exploring the microwave response of pseudo random metal patch arrays. His team are also developing antenna/metamaterial systems for the incorporation of RFID tags into their products to provide measures for tracking and anticounterfeiting. From April 2014 he will be leading a new Doctoral Training Centre in Metamaterials, a £12m EPSRC funded project supporting 80 PhD students over the next five years.

Further details of my research projects can be found at the Plasmonics, Microwave Photonics and Acoustic Metamaterials pages.

Funded Research Projects

  • 2008-2011: £65,000 iCASE award from Qinetiq for microwave studies, with A P Hibbins
  • 2008-2011: £65,000 iCASE award from Dstl for metamaterial surfaces, with A P Hibbins
  • 2008-2011: £45,000 part funded studentship for microwave metamaterials, with A P Hibbins
  • 2008-2011: £18,000 CASE award from Hewlett-Packard for an exploration of optically excited surface plasmons on zig-zag gold gratings
  • 2009-2012: £218,144 EPSRC grant to explore the electromagnetic response of zig-zag gratings both in the visible and microwave domain, with A P Hibbins
  • 2009-2012: £3,200,000 EPSRC KTA grant to commercialise, in collaboration with QinetiQ several of the jointly owned patents in the areas of microwave control, security, RFID and anticounterfeiting with W L Barnes and A Shaw
  • 2010-2013: £65,000 iCASE from BAE for microwave metamaterial surfaces
  • 2010-2013: £18,000 CASE from Sonardyne for acoustic metamaterials
  • 2011-2016: £1.6m program grant QUEST with Professor W L Barnes and Dr A P Hibbins
  • 2011-2012: £20,000 as part of the ‘Symmetry’ contract for anticounterfeiting.
  • 2011-2013: £67,000 KTP with Graphic in Crediton, to develop RFID tag insertion within printed circuit boards, with Dr A P Hibbins
  • 2012-2016: £197,000 MoD studentship on aperiodic metamaterial surfaces with Dr A P Hibbins
  • 2012-2016: £197,000 MoD studentship on acoustic metamaterials with Dr A P Hibbins
  • 2013-2015: £180,000 QinetiQ contract on acoustics with Prof A P Hibbins

Invited Presentations

  • 2008: To the Rank Prize Funds Mini-Symposium on Opto-Microfluidics for Large Scale Integration: “Differential surface plasmon sensing.”
  • 2008: To the 2nd International workshop on Liquid Crystals for Photonics “Microwave applications of liquid crystals.”
  • 2008: Plenary Rank Prize lecture to Photon08, Edinburgh “Surface Plasmon Sensing.”
  • 2008: To the School of Physics and Astronomy, Glasgow University “Squeezing cm waves into microns.”
  • 2009: To the Department of Physics, University of Cambridge “Electromagnetic surfaces: from butterflies to battleships.”
  • 2010: To the School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Nottingham “Electromagnetic surfaces: from butterflies to battleships.”
  • 2010: To the the 23rd International Liquid Crystal Society Meeting, Krakow “The influence of surface pre-tilt on the director profile during Poiseuille flow of nematic liquid crystal.”
  • 2011: To the Scottish Universities Physics Alliance, St Andrews “Electromagnetic surfaces: from butterflies to battleships.”
  • 2011: To the Dstl symposium at Royal Holloway “An academic’s view of Dstl.”
  • 2011: To Photonica Belgrade “Metamaterial surfaces at microwave frequencies.”
  • 2012: Keynote lecture at Nottingham Trent University “Electromagnetic surfaces: from butterflies to battleships.”

Contributions to the Community

  • Member of DSAC Council 2005-2011
  • Member of the new Counter-Terrorism S & T Centre Oversight Board 2006-
  • Member of the Institute of Physics Publishing Science Advice Committee 2007-
  • Member of the Royal Society Awards committee 2007-2010
  • Member of the Advisory Board for 2nd International Workshop on Liquid Crystals for Photonics 2008
  • Member of EPSRC Research Council 2008?
  • Chair of EPSRC DTC outline bids panel 2008
  • Seconded as Member of EPSRC TOP 2008
  • Member of CT centre review July 2008
  • Member of DTIC review September 2008
  • Member of MoD Quality study review October 2008
  • Member of EPSRC ITC panel 2009
  • Member of PAF review for MoD: June, July, September, November 2009
  • Member of EPSRC review panel Basic Technology theme day 2010
  • Chair EPSRC capital prioritisation panel 2010 Member of MoD Afghanistan meeting February 2010
  • Member of PAF review for MoD: February, August, October 2010
  • Member of CBRN delegation to Baltimore March 2010
  • Co-organiser of Royal Society “Metamaterials and Plasmonics” conference 2010
  • Member of Royal Society Sectional Committee 2; 2010-2013
  • Chair EPSRC Council RAC sub-committee 2011- -.
  • Member of Royal Society Paul Instrument Funds Award Committee 2011- -
  • Member of PAF review for MoD: February, March, July, August 2011
  • Co-organiser of Royal Society “New frontiers in anisotropic fluid-particle composites” 2012
  • Member of Dstl workshop for MoD January 2012
  • Member of PAF review for MoD: February, July 2012
  • Chair EPSRC Programme Grant panel 2013
  • Member of PAF review for MoD: February 2013
  • Member of Programme review for MoD July 2013
  • President Elect of the Institute of Physics 2013-2015

Memberships

Fellow of the Royal Society and Fellow of the Institute of Physics

Prizes

George Gray Medal of the British Liquid Crystal Society 1998

Thomas Young Medal of the Institute of Physics 2003

Faraday Medal of the Institute of Physics 2012

Consultancies

2005 to 2011 DSAC Council member
2011 - DSAC Independent (ISTA member)
2012 Atlas Electronics
2006 - Academic Board member of CENTRE

Outreach

  • 2008: To BAYS at Sherbourne College ‘Light and Colour’
  • 2009: To prospective University applicants and parents at Elizabeth College, Guernsey ‘Going to University’
  • 2009: To six different sets at Elizabeth College, Guernsey, talks on Physics
  • 2009: To A level students at Trinity School, Croydon, ‘Lasers, Light and Liquid Crystals’
  • 2009: To five different sets at Hurstpierpoint College, Sussex, talks on Physics (40 students)
  • 2009: To Sherbourne Science Café on ‘Lasers, Light and Liquid Crystals’ (~75 people)
  • 2010: To Exeter School on ‘Should science be allowed to explore anything?’ (95 students)
  • 2010: To BAYS at Sherbourne College ‘Light and Colour’ (60 students)
  • 2011: To Torquay Girls Grammar ‘Physics at University’ (20 students)
  • 2012: To “The Small School” Hartland ‘Light and Colour’ (20 students and staff)
  • 2012: To Torquay Girls Grammar ‘Physics at University’ (20 students)
  • 2012: To three different sets at Hurstpierpoint College, Sussex, talks on Physics (50 students and staff)
  • 2012: To Sidmouth Science Festival “Natural Photonics” (~25 people)
  • 2012: To Sherbourne College ‘Wave-particle duality’ (~100 students and staff)
  • 2012: To Torquay Girls Grammar ‘Physics at University’ (8 students)
  • 2013: To Exeter Cafe Scientifique “Natural Photonics” (~50 people)
  • 2013: To ‘Brownies’ in Crediton on ‘Light’ (~20 children)
  • 2013: To Teignmouth Cafe Scientifique on ‘Natural Photonics’ (~40 people)
  • 2013: To Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution. ‘Wave particle duality’ (~50 people)
  • 2013: To Withington School for Girls, Manchester. 'Wave particle duality' (~60 students)
Google+