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Durham University

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Staff Profile

Dr Michael Hunt, M.A.(Cantab) Ph.D SFHEA

Lecturer in the Department of Physics
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 33 43648
Room number: 145
Member of the Durham X-ray Centre

(email at





  • PHYS2641 Laboratory Skills and Electronics: Level 2 Bridge Projects
  • PHYS3711/4271 Condensed Matter Physics 3/4: Symmetry, Structure and Excitations
  • PHYS3581 Team Projects
  • PHYS4213 Final Year Project



  • PHYS4151 Advanced Condensed Matter Physics: Low Dimensional Solids (2010-2017)
  • PHYS3641 Advanced Physics 3: Optical Properties of Solids (2015-2017)
  • PHYS3601 Laboratory Project: Condensed Matter Physics (2010-2017)
  • PHYS2531 Thermal and Condensed Matter Physics: Electrons in Solids (2008-2012)
  • PHYS2551 Laboratory Skill and Practice (2002-2010)
  • PHYS3561 General Problems (2003-2007)
  • PHYS1122 Foundations of Physics I: Electricity and Magnetism (2003-2007)


  • Image Analysis (2011-2016)
  • Physics at Surfaces (2003-2010)


  • Level 3 Laboratory Leader (2012-2017)
  • Member of Laboratories Committee (2012-2017)
  • Chair Level 3 Examination Papers Committee (2015-2017)
  • Member of Level 2 Examination Paper Committee (2014)
  • Undergraduate Admissions Selector (2015-2017)

Research interests

My group researches the growth, modification, and characterisation of low-dimensional (nanometre scale) structures. Experimental techiques such as scanned probe microscopy, low energy electron diffraction, electron microscopy and Raman spectroscopy are combined with ab-initio and semi-empirical computation in order to understand the behaviour of two-dimensional layers (such as graphene, transition metal dichalcogenides), nanoparticulates and nanotubes and how their properties can be modified in a controlled fashion for use in electronic devices, energy generation and storage.

Research Groups

Centre for Materials Physics

  • Carbon Nanostructures

Department of Physics


Chapter in book

  • Butenko, Yuriy, Šiller, Lidija & Hunt, Michael R.C. (2014). Carbon Onions. In Carbon Nanomaterials. Gogotsi, Yury & Presser, Volker CRC Press. 279-302.
  • Butenko, Yuriy V., Šiller, L. & Hunt, M.R.C. (2010). Carbon Onions. In Handbook of Nanophysics: Clusters and Fullerenes. Sattler, K.D. CRC Press. 1-18.

Journal Article

  • Wang, J., Zhang, H., Hunt, M. R. C., Charles, A., Tang, J. Bretcanu, O., Walker, D., Hassan, K. T., Sun, Y. & Siller, L. (2017). Synthesis and Characterisation of Reduced Graphene Oxide/Bismuth Composite for Electrodes in Electrochemical Energy Storage Devices. ChemSusChem 10(2): 363-371.
  • Siller, L., Piticharoenphun, S., Lemloh, M.L., Horrocks, B.R., Kaulich, B., Gianoncelli, A., Hunt, M.R.C., Brummer, F. & Medakovic, D. (2016). Sulphur-Containing Compounds as a Response in Sea Urchins Exposed to Alkylated Silicon Nanocrystals and SiO2-Coated Iron Oxide Nanoparticles. Key Engineering Materials 672: 312-327.
  • Hopf, T., Vassilevski, K., Escobedo-Cousin, E., King, P., Wright, N. G., O'Neill, A. G., Horsfall, A. B., Goss, J., Wells, G. & Hunt, M. (2015). Electrical characterization of epitaxial graphene field-effect transistors with high-k Al2O3 gate dieletric fabricated on SiC substrates. Materials Science Forum 821-823: 937-940.
  • Wells, G. H., Hunt, M. R. C., Hopf, T, Vassilevski, K. V., Escobedo-Cousin, E., Horsfall, A. B., Goss, J. P. & O'Neill, A. (2015). Facile technique for the removal of metal contamination from graphene. Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology B, Nanotechnology and Microelectronics: Materials, Processing, Measurement, and Phenomena 33(5): 051802.
  • Wells, G.H., Hopf, T., Vassilevski, K.V., Escobedo-Cousin, E., Wright, N.G., Horsfall, A.B., Goss, J.P., O'Neill, A.G. & Hunt, M.R.C. (2014). Determination of the adhesion energy of graphene on SiC(0001) via measurement of pleat defects. Applied Physics Letters 105(19): 193109.
  • Hopf, T., Vassilevski, K.V., Escobedo-Cousin, E., King, P.J., Wright, N.G., O'Neill, A.G., Horsfall, A.B., Goss, J.P., Wells, G.H. & Hunt, M.R.C (2014). Dirac point and transconductance of top-gated graphene field-effect transistors operating at elevated temperature. Journal of Applied Physics 116(15): 154504.
  • Hopf, Toby, Vassilevski, Konstantin, Escobedo-Cousin, Enrique, Wright, Nick, O'Neill, Anthony G., Horsfall, Alton, Goss, Jonathan P., Barlow, Anders, Wells, George & Hunt, Michael (2014). Optimizing the Vacuum Growth of Epitaxial Graphene on 6H-SiC. Materials Science Forum 778-780: 1154-1157.
  • Krishnamurthy, S., Butenko, Yu. V., Dhanak, V.R., Hunt, M.R.C. & Siller, L. (2013). In situ formation of onion-like carbon from the evaporation of ultra-dispersed nanodiamonds. Carbon 52: 145-149.
  • Coxon, P.R., Newman, M., Hunt, M.R.C., O'Farrell, N., Horrocks, B.R., Poolton, N.R.J. & Siller, L. (2012). DNA-modified silicon nanocrystals studied by X-ray luminescence and X-ray absorption spectroscopies: Observation of a strong infra-red luminescence band. Journal of Applied Physics 111(5): 054311.
  • Hunt, M.R.C. & Clark, S.J. (2012). Extraordinarily Long-Ranged Structural Relaxation in Defective Achiral Carbon Nanotubes. Physical Review Letters 109(26): 265502.
  • Macovez, R., Hunt, M.R.C., Goldoni, A., Pedio, M. & Rudolf, P. (2011). Surface Hubbard U of alkali fullerides. Journal of Electron Spectroscopy and Related Phenomena 183(1-3): 94-100.
  • Siller, L., Krishnamurthy, S., Kjeldgaard, L., Horrocks, B.R., Chao, Y., Houlton, A., Chakraborty, A.K. & Hunt, M.R.C. (2009). Core and valence exciton formation in x-ray absorption, x-ray emission and x-ray excited optical luminescence from passivated Si nanocrystals at the Si L-2,L-3 edge. Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter 21(9): 095005
  • Siller, L., Alves, L., Brieva, A.C., Butenko, Yu.V. & Hunt, M.R.C. (2009). Gold Nitride: Preparation and Properties. Topics in Catalysis 52(11): 1604-1610
  • Macovez, R., Hunt, M.R.C., Shan, J.J., Goldoni, A., Pichler, T., Pedio, M., Moras, P., Castellarin-Cudia, C., Schiessling, J., Venema, L. & Rudolf, P. (2009). Metal-to-insulator transition in thin-film polymeric AC(60). New Journal of Physics 11(2): 023035.
  • Butenko, Yu. V. Chakraborty, A. K., Peltekis, N., Krishnamurthy, S, Dhanak, V. R, Hunt, M. R. C & Siller, L. (2008). Potassium intercalation of carbon onions 'opened' by carbon dioxide treatment. Carbon 46(8): 1133-1140.
  • Hunt, Michael R.C. (2008). Surface and bulk components in angle-resolved core-level photoemission spectroscopy of graphite. Physical Review B 78(15): 153408.
  • Chakraborty, A. K., Wooley, R. A. J., Butenko, Yu. V., Siller, L. & Hunt, M.R.C (2007). A photoelectron spectroscopy study of ion-irradiation induced defects in single-wall carbon nanotubes. Carbon 45: 2744-2750.
  • Chakraborty, Amit K., Jacobs, J., Anderson, C., Roberts, C. J. & Hunt, Michael R. C. (2006). Chemical vapor deposition growth of carbon nanotubes on Si substrates using Fe catalyst: What happens at the nanotube/Fe/Si interface. Journal of Applied Physics 100(8): 1-6.
  • Knaapila, M. , Torkkeli, M, Lyons, B.P., Hunt, M.R.C., Hase, T.P.A., Seeck, O.H. Bouchenoire, L. Serimaa, R. & Monkman, A.P. (2006). Influence of star-like iridium complexes in the graphoepitaxy of polyfluorene thin films. Physical Review B 74: 1-5.
  • Chao, Y., Houlton, A., Horrocks, B. R., Hunt, M. R. C., Poolton, N. R. J., Yang, J. & Siller, L. (2006). Optical luminescence from alkyl-passivated Si nanocrystals under vacuum ultraviolet excitation: Origin and temperature dependence of the blue and orange emissions. Applied Physics Letters 88(26): 1-3.
  • Bera MK, Chakraborty S, Das R, Dalapati GK, Chattopadhyay S, Samanta SK, Yoo WJ, Chakraborty AK, Butenko Y, Siller L, Hunt MRC, Saha S, Maiti CK (2006). Rapid thermal oxidation of Ge-rich Si1-xGex heterolayers. JOURNAL OF VACUUM SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY A 24(1): 84-90.
  • Šiller, L., Peltekis, N., Krishnamurthy, S., Chao, Y. Bull, S. J. & Hunt, M. R. C. (2005). Gold film with gold nitride-A conductor but harder than gold. Applied Physics Letters 86(22): 221912.
  • Butenko, Yu. V., Krishnamurthy, S., Chakraborty, A. K., & Kuznetsov, V. L., Dhanak, V. R., Hunt, M. R. and Šiller, L. (2005). Photoemission study of onionlike carbons produced by annealing nanodiamonds. Physical Review B 71: 075420-.
  • Chao, Y., Krishnamurthy, S., Montalti, M., Lie, L.H., Houlton, A., Horrocks, B.R., Kjeldgaard, L., Dhanak, V.R., Hunt, M.R.C. & Šiller, L. (2005). Reactions and luminescence in passivated Si nanocrystallites induced by vacuum ultraviolet and soft-x-ray photons. Journal Of Applied Physics 98(4): 044316.
  • Krishnamurthy, S., Montalti, M., Wardle, M. G., Shaw, M. J., Briddon, P. R., Svensson, K., Hunt, M. R. C. & Šiller, L. (2004). Nitrogen ion irradiation of Au(110) Photoemission spectroscopy and possible crystal structures of gold nitride. Physical Review B 70(4): 045414.
  • Butcher, M. J., Nolan, J. W., Hunt, M. R., Beton, P. H., & Dunsch, L., Kuran, P., Georgi, P. and Dennis, T. J. (2003). Adsorption and manipulation of endohedral and higher fullerenes on Si(100)-2×1. Physical Review B 67: 125413-.
  • Montalti, M., Krishnamurthy, S., Chao, Y., Butenko, Y. V., Kuznetsov, V. L., Dhanak, V. R., Hunt, M. R. C. & Šiller, L. (2003). Photoemission spectroscopy of clean and potassium-intercalated carbon onions. Physical Review B 67(11): 113401.
  • Hunt, M. R. C., Pichler, T., Šiller, L. Brühwiler, P. A., Golden, M. S., Tagmatarchis, N., Prassides, K. & Rudolf, P. (2002). Final-state interference effects in valence band photoemission of (C59N)2. Physical Review B 66(19): 193404.
  • Siller L, Hunt MRC, Brown JW, Coquel JM & Rudolf P (2002). Nitrogen Ion Irradiation Of Au(110): Formation Of Gold Nitride. Surface Science 513: 78-82.
  • Chao, Y., Svensson, K., Radosavkić, D., Dhanak, V. R., & Hunt, M. R. and Šiller, L. (2002). Photoemission spectroscopy of the evolution of In-terminated InP(100)-(2×4) as a function of temperature: Surface- and cluster-related In 4d lines. Physical Review B 66(7): 075323.
  • Hunt, Michael R. C., Montalti, Massimo, Chao, Yimin, Krishnamurthy, Satheesh Dhanak, Vinod R. & Šiller, Lidija (2002). Thermally induced decomposition of single-wall carbon nanotubes adsorbed on H/Si(111). Applied Physics Letters 81(25): 4847-4849.
  • Butcher, M. J. Nolan, J. W. Hunt, M. R. C., Beton, P. H. Dunsch, L. Kuran, P., Georgi, P. & Dennis, T. J. S. (2001). Orientationally ordered island growth of higher fullerenes on Ag/Si(111)-(3×3)R30°. Physical Review B 64(19): 195401.
  • Chao, Y., Svensson, K., Radosavkić, D. Dhanak, V. R., Šiller, L. & Hunt, M. R. C. (2001). Photoemission study of chemisorption of C60 on InP(100). Physical Review B 64(23): 235331.
  • Pichler, T., Hu, Z.,, Grazioli, C., Legner, S., Knupfer, M., Golden, M. S. Fink, J. de Groot, F. M. F. Hunt, M. R. C. , Rudolf, P., Follath, R., Jung, Ch., Kjeldgaard, L., Brühwiler, P., Inakuma, M. & Shinohara, H. (2000). Proof for trivalent Sc ions in Sc2\@C84 from high-energy spectroscopy. Physical Review B 62(19): 13196-13201.
  • Hunt, Michael R. C. , Schmidt, Jens & Palmer, Richard E. (1999). Electron-beam-induced fragmentation in ultrathin C60 films on Si(100)-2×1-H: Mechanisms of cage destruction. Physical Review B 60(8): 5927-5937.
  • Hunt, Michael R. C., Schmidt, Jens and Palmer, Richard E. (1998). Electron-beam damage of C60 films on hydrogen-passivated Si(100). Applied Physics Letters 72: 323-325.
  • Coquel, Jean-Marc, Hunt, Michael R. C., Siller, Lidija, & and Palmer, Richard E. (1998). Electron-stimulated reaction of C60 with a model etching gas, SF6. Journal of Applied Physics 84: 4603-4610.
  • Hunt, M.R.C. & Palmer, R.E. (1998). The development of metallic behaviour in clusters on surfaces. "Philosophical Transactions A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences" 356: 231-.
  • Schmidt, J., Hunt, M. R. C., Miao, P. and Palmer, R. E. (1997). Film growth and surface reactions of C60 on Si(100)H(2×1). Physical Review B 56: 9918-9924.
  • Hunt, Michael R. C., Rudolf, Petra and Modesti, Silvio (1997). Localization of substrate-induced modification in the electronic structureof C60sat fullerene-metal interfaces. Physical Review B 55: 7882-7888.
  • Hunt, Michael R. C., Rudolf, Petra and Modesti, Silvio (1997). Photoemission and electron-energy-loss-spectroscopy study of C60 monolayers adsorbed on Cs-precovered Au(110) and of bulk distilled CsxC60. Physical Review B 55: 7889-7903.
  • Hunt MRC, Durston PJ & Palmer RE (1996). Electronic And Geometric Structure Of Cs On Graphite (0001). Surface Science 364: 266-272.
  • Li ZY, Hunt MRC & Palmer RE (1996). Growth And Electronic Excitations Of Cs/c-60 Layered Structures On Graphite. Surface Science 352: 442-446.
  • Hunt MRC (1996). Temperature Dependence Of The Electronic And Vibrational Excitations Of C-60 Adsorbed On Si(100)-2x1. Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter 8: L229-L235.
  • Hunt MRC & Palmer RE (1996). The Structural And Vibrational Properties Of C-60 Adsorbed On The Graphite(0001) Surface. Surface Review And Letters 3: 937-942.
  • Hunt, M. R. C., Modesti, S., Rudolf, P. and Palmer, R. E. (1995). Charge transfer and structure in C60 adsorption on metal surfaces. Physical Review B 51: 10039-10047.
  • Barnard JC, Hock KM, Siller L, Hunt MRC, Wendelken JF & Palmer RE (1993). New Resonances In High-resolution Eels Of Adsorbed Molecules - Electronic Excitation Of Physisorbed O-2. Surface Science 291: 139-144.

Book review

  • Hunt, Michael & Siller, Lidija (2015). An insidious and ubiquitous menace. Physics World 28(9): 40-41.