Aitor Mugarza

Aitor Mugarza

Institut Català de Nanociència i Nanotecnologia

Engineering Sciences

Aitor Mugarza graduated and obtained his PhD in Physics both at the University of Basque Country. After his doctoral studies, he was awarded a Marie Curie fellowship to work as a postdoctoral scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, USA, and at the Materials Science Institute of Barcelona (ICMAB). He later joined the Catalan Institute of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology-ICN2 (formerly ICN) starting as a Ramon y Cajal Fellow in 2007, and as Tenure Track Group Leader of the Atomic Manipulation and Spectroscopy Group at ICN2 since 2013. He is author of 70+ articles, and of 60+ invited talks at international conferences, universities and schools. His research activity is based on the investigation of quantum properties of matter on the nanoscale, and developing strategies to manipulate them with atomic precision.

Research interests

The research interests of Aitor Mugarza focus on the atomic-scale engineering of the quantum properties of novel nanomaterials. At the nanoscale, the properties of materials are dominated by quantum effects and interfacial phenomena, which impose strong limitations on the control and reproducibility of device performances, but also open up avenues for engineering new physical properties. The aim of Aitor Mugarza and his group is to understand and control quantum phenomena with atomic precision by chemical and structural manipulation, nanostructuring and interfacing materials that are identified as strategic in the roadmap for new technologies (hybrid metal-organic heterostructures, graphene-based 2D materials, topological insulators...).

Selected publications

- Tenorio M, Moreno C, Febrer P, et al. 2022, 'Atomically Sharp Lateral Superlattice Heterojunctions Built-In Nitrogen-Doped Nanoporous Graphene', Advanced Materials, 34(20), e2110099.

- Bellini V, Rusponi S, Kolorenč J, Mahatha SK, Valbuena MA, Persichetti L, Pivetta M, Sorokin BV, Merk D, Reynaud S, Sblendorio D, Stepanow S, Nistor C, Gargiani P, Betto D, Mugarza A, Gambardella P, Brune H, Carbone C & Barla A 2022, 'Slow Magnetic Relaxation of Dy Adatoms with In-Plane Magnetic Anisotropy on a Two-Dimensional Electron Gas', ACS Nano 16, 11182-11193.

Selected research activities



LEGO chemistry for  graphene-based nanoarchitectures”,   Nanotech France, Paris (France).  


Ligand and on-surface chemistry as strategies to tune charge and spin interactions at surfaces”, International Conference on Porphyrins and Phthalocyanines, Madrid (Spain) 



- ERC Consolidator


Other Activities:


- Member of the Scientific Committee of the Spanish Vacuum Society (ASEVA).

- National delegate of the Nanometer Structure Division of the International Union for Vacuum Science,       Technique, and Applications - IUVSTA


-Lecturer in Master in Multidisciplinary Research in Experimental Sciences (UPF-BIST).

- Lecturer in Master in Advanced Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (UAB).