Andrew D. Huxley

Andrew D. Huxley

Andrew D. Huxley (born 1966) is the chair of the physics department of Edinburgh University. Of no relation to Sir Andrew F. Huxley (the English physiologist and biophysicist), Prof. Andrew D. Huxley is of renown in the field of condensed matter physics. While at the CEA laboratory in Grenoble, Huxley and colleagues were involved in the revolutionary discovery of superconductivity in the ferromagnet UGe2 under applied pressure [2] . This was followed up by a series of breakthroughs in another ferromagnetic material, URhGe [3-5] , which was found to turn superconducting under the application of an external magnetic field. This emergence of an unconventional superconducting state by the application of an external tuning parameter such as magnetic field or pressure is hypothesised to be closely related to a 'Quantum critical point' (QCP) - a special phase transition that occurs at temperatures approaching zero kelvins. Quantum fluctuations are enhanced at the QCP, destabilising the conventional phase that dominates under ambient conditions, making conditions propitious for the emergence of a novel unconventional phase such as superconductivity, or possibly even more exotic states.

Huxley earned a BA from Churchill College, Cambridge University, an MS from the University of Pennsylvania, and a PhD from Cambridge University. He was subsequently a postdoctorate fellow and then a scientist at CEA, Grenoble before joining Edinburgh University as a Professor of Physics in 2006. Huxley is yet another of the prestigious alumnae of the [ Quantum Matter] (formerly the Low Temperature Physics) group in the Cavendish Laboratory, Cambridge University that have gone on to become leading physicists. The current leader of the group, Prof. Gilbert (Gil) Lonzarich, is considered by many to be the visionary behind the burgeoning field within experimental condensed matter research that involves the discovery of novel phases in the vicinity of quantum critical points.

elected publications

* 1. "Realignment of the flux-line lattice by a change in the symmetry of superconductivity in UPt3". Andrew Huxley, Pierre Rodière, Donald McK. Paul, Niels van Dijk, Robert Cubitt and Jacques Flouquet. Nature 406, pp. 160 - 164 (13 Jul 2000)

* 2. "Superconductivity on the border of itinerant-electron ferromagnetism in UGe2". S. S. Saxena, P. Agarwal, K. Ahilan, F. M. Grosche, R. K. W. Haselwimmer, M. J. Steiner, E. Pugh, I. R. Walker, S. R. Julian, P. Monthoux, G. G. Lonzarich, A. Huxley, I. Sheikin, D. Braithwaite and J. Flouquet. Nature 406, pp. 587 - 592 (10 Aug 2000)

* 3. "Coexistence of superconductivity and ferromagnetism in URhGe". Dai Aoki, Andrew Huxley, Eric Ressouche, Daniel Braithwaite, Jacques Flouquet, Jean-Pascal Brison, Elsa Lhotel and Carley Paulsen. Nature 413, pp. 613 - 616 (11 Oct 2001)

* 4. "Magnetic Field-Induced Superconductivity in the Ferromagnet URhGe". F. Lévy, I. Sheikin, B. Grenier and A. D. Huxley. Science 309, pp. 1343-1346 (26 August 2005)

* 5. "Acute enhancement of the upper critical field for superconductivity approaching a quantum critical point in URhGe". F. Lévy, I. Sheikin and A. Huxley. Nature Physics 3, pp. 460 - 463 (01 Jul 2007)

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