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Dynamics of Correlated Materials

Strongly correlated electron materials exhibit exotic electronic and magnetic properties, characterized by broken-symmetry ground states such as metal-to-insulator instabilities, unconventional superconductivity, complex magnetism and various other cooperative ordering phenomena. One of the major challenges in this field is to understand the ground and excited state properties on a microscopic level and disentangle the competing interactions and correlations of charge, spin, orbital and lattice degrees of freedom, acting on multiple length, energy and time scales.
The Dynamics of Correlated Materials group aims at using complementary femtosecond time-resolved methods sensitive to the various coupled degrees of freedom such as time-resolved photoelectron spectroscopy and time-resolved diffraction techniques to study their elementary interaction processes and couplings in such complex materials. For example, in a material with metal-to-insulator transition, optical excitation can result in a transient closing of band gaps and suppression of structural distortions, and their timescales provide information on the driving force of the transition.


Time-resolved ARPES allows to observe the ultrafast closing of the charge-density wave gapped Fermi-Surface in DyTe3 after optical excitation. The transient electronic structure reveals a residual electronic gap even in the transient metallic state. For more information see L. Rettig, et al., Nat. Comm. 7, 10459 (2016)