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College of Arts and Sciences

John P. Carini

John P. Carini Associate Professor
Condensed Matter Physics (Experimental)

B.A., University of Chicago, 1980.
Ph.D., University of Chicago, 1988.
Postdoctoral Position: UCLA, Department of Physics, 1986-1988

Office: Swain West 167
Phone: Swain West 167 (812)855-4359
Email: jcarini at

Research in my lab concentrates on experimental studies of the dynamics of electrons in disordered materials and on waves in artificial structures.

The study of disordered materials is challenging in a number of interesting ways. Most obviously, electrons will not form Bloch waves as they do in crystalline materials, but in addition, the disorder enhances the effects of electron-electron interactions and, in the case of strong disorder, leads to localization of the electronic states. There are further questions about the role of the intrinsic local inhomogeneity in the nature of the electronic states.

Dynamical experiments are useful as a way of probing the motion of electrons in their disordered environment; if the frequencies are sufficiently high, one directly observes the quantum-mechanically coherent response of the electrons. Near quantum-critical transitions, the response is dominated by quantum fluctuations. For example, near the disorder-driven metal-insulator transition the conductivity and dielectric responses become intrinsically scale-dependent in time and space as the system fluctuates between conducting and non-conducting ground states.

Disordered materials often have unique magnetic properties as well. In many systems, the relationship between the electric and magnetic properties remains largely unexplored.

Selected Publications

  • Measurement of linear-response Coulomb drag in insulating a SixNbx bilayer systems, K. Elsayad, J. P. Carini, and D. V. Baxter. Solid State Communications 148, 261-266 (2008).
  • Solid Polymer Single-Ion Conductors: Synthesis and Properties, Lyudmila M. Bronstein, Robert L. Karlinsey, Barry Stein, Zheng Yi, John Carini, and Josef W. Zwanziger, Chemistry of Materials 18, 708-715 (2006).
  • Frequency scaling of microwave conductivity in the integer quantum Hall minima, R. M. Lewis and J. P. Carini, Phys. Rev. B 64, 073310 (2001).
  • Measurements of the Complex Conductivity of NbxSi1-x Alloys on the Insulating Side of the Metal-Insulator Transition, E. Helgren, G. Grüner, M. Ciofalo, D. V. Baxter, J. P. Carini, Phys. Rev. Lett. 87, 116602 (2001).
  • Quantum-Critical Conductivity Scaling for a Metal-Insulator Transition, H.-L. Lee, J.P. Carini, D.V. Baxter, W. Henderson, and G. Grüner, Science 287, 633-6 (2000).
  • Binding and scattering in two-dimensional systems: applications to quantum wires, waveguides, and photonic crystals, J. T. Londergan, J. P. Carini, and D. P. Murdock, Springer Lecture Notes in Physics series (Berlin: Springer-Verlag 1999).
  • Quantum-critical dynamics at the metal-insulator transition for amorphous niobium-silicon, H.-L. Lee, J. P. Carini, D. V. Baxter, G. Grüner, Phys. Rev. Lett. 80, 4261-4264 (1998).
  • Continuous quantum phase transitions, S. L. Sondhi, S. M. Girvin, J. P. Carini, and D. Shahar, Rev. Mod. Phys. 69, 315-333 (1997).
  • Bound states in waveguides and bent quantum wires, I: Applications to waveguide systems, J. P. Carini, J. T. Londergan, D. P. Murdock, D. Trinkle, and C. S. Yung, Phys. Rev. B 55, 9842-9851 (1997).