Ankit Disa accepts professorship at Cornell University

MPSD researcher Ankit Disa has accepted a professorship at Cornell University in the United States. He has been working as an experimental physicist in the Institute’s Condensed Matter Dynamics Department at CFEL since 2016 and will take up his new post as Assistant Professor of Applied and Engineering Physics at Cornell in July 2022.

© Joerg Harms

Ankit’s research concentrates on understanding and manipulating the properties of complex electronic and magnetic materials. Together with colleagues from the MPSD and the University of Oxford he demonstrated the ability to manipulate the magnetic state of a solid using terahertz frequency light. The process produced an effect orders of magnitude larger than previously achieved and on ultrafast time scales.


At Cornell, Ankit will continue his research on quantum materials, focusing in particular on phenomena arising at interfaces and in low-dimensions. “I will apply the techniques I learned at the MPSD to these types of systems, using light as a means to both probe and control their unique physics,” he says. “In addition, I will synthesize artificial materials and structures to search for new, interesting behavior.”


Ultimately Ankit hopes to be able to engineer functional properties by combining light and materials synthesis – a research direction with great potential for information processing and quantum technologies. He is hugely excited about his appointment: “I’m really looking forward to all of the opportunities this position brings: Building up a new lab, exploring new research topics, working with excellent colleagues at Cornell, and mentoring young students and researchers!”


Ankit joined Andrea Cavalleri’s research group at the MPSD in 2016, having completed his doctorate at Yale University. He received a Humboldt Research Fellowship in 2017 and worked with the Excellence Cluster CUI: Advanced Imaging of Matter in 2019 and 2020. He returned to the MPSD in late 2020, where he continues to work in the Condensed Matter Dynamics Department. Since March 2021, Ankit has also researched at the Max Planck-New York City Center for Non-Equilibrium Quantum Phenomena, a joint research center involving the MPSD, the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research, Columbia University and the Flatiron Institute in New York.