photo of Gregory David Fuchs

Gregory David Fuchs

Associate Professor and Rebecca Q. and James C. Morgan Sesquicentennial Faculty Fellow
Applied and Engineering Physics
Clark Hall, Room 228


Fuchs earned his Ph.D. from Cornell University in 2007. Afterward, he moved to the University of California, Santa Barbara as a postdoctoral associate. In 2011, he joined the Cornell faculty of Applied and Engineering Physics. In 2012 he received a Young Investigator Award from the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, in 2013 he received an Early Faculty Career Award from the National Science Foundation along with the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, and in 2014 he received the Early Career Award from the Department of Energy.

Research Interests

Our research centers on understanding and controlling spin dynamics in solid state systems. Drawing from condensed-matter physics, atomic physics, and materials engineering, we strive to develop new optical, electrical, and microwave frequency probes of spin dynamics at the nanoscale. Spin is a purely quantum mechanical degree of freedom of electrons and nuclei. The localized electronic states of point defects in wide-bandgap semiconductor crystals are ideal systems to explore these quantum properties, even under ambient conditions. In the case of nitrogen-vacancy (NV) defect centers in diamond, the quantum spin state of an individual defect can be optically initialized, coherently controlled, and optically interrogated. NV center spins have a simple Hamiltonian, providing a "toy-model" system that is suited for investigations of quantum information processing and precision measurement. We are interested in leveraging quantum phenomena and spin resonance techniques to develop these point-defects as sensitive detectors of magnetic fields with nanoscale spatial resolution. In addition, we seek to develop new semiconductor defect-based spin systems to enable new functionality for quantum communication, quantum information processing, and metrology.

In ferromagnetic materials, quantum exchange results in a classical magnetic moment. Modern technology makes heavy use of magnetic materials for non-volatile information storage (hard drives and other magnetic memory). At the nanoscale, where spatial confinement is comparable to the domain wall width of many materials, dynamical magnetic behavior is determined not only by "bulk" material properties but also by the morphology, surfaces, and interfaces. Nanoscale magnetic elements are non-linear oscillators with rich dynamical properties that are increasingly attractive for new technology. Despite this promise, there are very few options to experimentally probe magnetization on the appropriate scales: with both nanoscale spatial resolution and picosecond time resolution. We seek to develop new optical spatiotemporal microscopy techniques to access this regime and combine them with existing approaches (ferromagnetic resonance, magneto-transport, nanofabrication) to study the unique dynamics of magnetization at the nanoscale. In addition, we are interested in developing nanofabrication of magnetoelectronic devices to enable new methods of control over magnetization.

Selected Publications

Selected Awards and Honors

  • Early Career Research Program Awardee(Department of Energy)2014
  • Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers(Air Force Office of Scientific Research)2013
  • Faculty Early Career Award(National Science Foundation)2013
  • Rebecca Q. and James C. Morgan Sesquicentennial Faculty Fellow(Cornell University)2012
  • AFOSR Young Investigator Award(Air Force Office of Scientific Research)2012


  • BS(Physics and Chemistry Education),University of Wisconsin-Madison,1996
  • MS(Applied Physics),Cornell University,2003
  • Ph D(Applied Physics),Cornell University,2007