Ryan Muldoon: Early Stage Researcher (secondee)

I studied at Queen’s University Belfast where I received my Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Chemical Engineering. In my bachelor’s thesis I modelled the densities and viscosities of Ionic Liquids in Binary Mixtures. For my master’s thesis I studied the growth of Metal Organic Frameworks on magnetic nanoparticles focusing mainly on the surface functionalisation of Iron Oxide Particles.

I joined Seagate after graduating from University and have now been working at the company for just over a year. In that time I have worked on Deposition and Charactersation of Precious Metals using Magnetron Sputter Deposition and various tools to characterise thin films structurally, optically and magnetically.

After completing my first year of employment at Seagate, I began my secondment to the University of Duisburg-Essen where I was introduced to the working group under Heiko Wende and the projects they were currently working on involving magnetic materials.

I was mainly working on and assisting the project concerning High Magnetic Moment Materials with Rare-earth and 3d Transition metal Composites; especially the Trilayer system of Fe / Mn / Gd. I was part of a team performing XMCD measurements on such samples at the Berlin Synchrotron Radiation Source BESSY II.

Being exposed to some of the methodologies and techniques used at the university has given me insight into what is possible in research & development in an academic environment compared to an industrial one and what the advantages and limitations are of both. This project allowed me to obtain an in depth understanding of current research going on in the field, learn new concepts, new software as well as help me build a network of connections of researchers currently working in the discipline which will help on future collaborative projects.

I feel I have learned much from the experience and go back into work in industry with improved confidence in my ability to contribute and work efficiently as part of the SEAGATE research and development team.