Material science

Our materials science research programmes include room-temperature superconductors, magnetic composites, spintronics, and more sustainable steel production.

Excellent materials science both underpins our applied research programmes and explores new phenomena for future applications. Our diverse portfolio, ranging from magnetic skyrmions to zero-CO2 steel production methods, seeks to deliver a sustainable future for New Zealand.

Gloved hands working on a machine with tools

Room-temperature superconductors

Our research into the fundamental properties of superconducting materials could identify a new superconductor that carries current without extensive cooling.

Photograph of an electron microscope in use.

Electron microscopy

We use scanning electron microscopes to investigate the structure and composition of materials, supporting both academic research and commercial activities.

Two engineers using a device to detect defects within a pipe.

Magnetic fields for fault detection

We have developed magneto-resistive sensor testing and data analytics to monitor and detect faults in powerlines and inaccessible steel infrastructure.

Two men wearing protective glasses looking at a laser spectroscopy machine in a dark room


We design and use state-of-the-art ultrafast laser technology for fundamental research and advanced material characterisation.

Two men looking at a magnet

Magnetic composites

We're developing durable magnetic compounds to enable on-road charging of electric vehicles and other applications of inductive power transfer technology.

Shiny silver crystal material

Growing single crystals

Our expertise in producing quality samples of single crystals to probe the intrinsic properties of materials is available to research and commercial partners.

Scientist looking into vacuum chamber window.

Spintronic devices

We're studying the basic physics of new magnetic materials to help develop new spintronics devices that make computing more powerful and energy efficient.

Gloved hands placing a micro-chip sensor onto a slide a near a microscope

Tailor made magnetic sensors

We use our thin-film capability to make bespoke magnetic sensors for niche applications where existing commercial sensors are not sufficient.

Three scientists having a conversation in a lab

Zero-CO₂ metals

A hydrogen-based steelmaking process that produces water rather than CO₂ as a by-product could help us to reduce our carbon footprint.