Dr Clifford Hicks PhD

Dr Clifford Hicks

School of Physics and Astronomy
Reader in Condensed Matter Physics

Contact details

+49(0)3514646 3227
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School of Physics and Astronomy
B15 2TT

Clifford Hicks is a Reader in Condensed Matter Physics.

Dr. Hicks’ group studies correlated electron systems such as superconductors and magnetically ordered compounds. He is a specialist in instrumentation, and his group works at the intersection of basic science and new, custom engineering, in order to pursue open scientific questions as directly as possible. He is famous in particular for development of methods for strain tuning, which has led seven Science- and Nature-group publications since 2014, the founding of a spin-out company, Razorbill Instruments, and a large number of collaborations, including with groups in Germany, Japan, and the United States.

Dr. Hicks believes that fundamental science is at its core an activity done to maintain human curiosity and lust for adventure and excellence. Through pursuit of fundamental, beautiful scientific questions, members of his group gain a wide range of useful engineering skills. Good scientists should never be afraid to build themselves the equipment that they need! This is part of the adventure.


  • PhD in Applied Physics, Stanford University, U.S.A., 2009
  • B.S. in Physics, California Institute of Technology, U.S.A., 2000.


• Daniel O. Brodsky (U. St. Andrews, 2015)

• Mark E. Barber (U. St. Andrews, 2017)

• Jack M. Bartlett (U. St. Andrews, 2019)

• Fabian Jerzembeck (Technical University of Dresden, 2020)

• Shreenanda Ghosh (Technical University of Dresden, 2021)

Other activities

Co-founder and technical advsior for Razorbill Instruments, an engineering company based in Edinburgh, U.K., 2014 


Recent publications


Vinograd, I, Souliou, SM, Haghighirad, A-A, Lacmann, T, Caplan, Y, Frachet, M, Merz, M, Garbarino, G, Liu, Y, Nakata, S, Ishida, K, Noad, HML, Minola, M, Keimer, B, Orgad, D, Hicks, CW & Le Tacon, M 2024, 'Using strain to uncover the interplay between two- and three-dimensional charge density waves in high-temperature superconducting YBa2Cu3Oy', Nature Communications, vol. 15, no. 1, 3277. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-024-47540-w

Mueller, E, Iguchi, Y, Watson, C, Hicks, C, Maeno, Y & Moler, K 2023, 'Constraints on a split superconducting transition under uniaxial strain in Sr2RuO4 from scanning SQUID microscopy', Physical Review B, vol. 108, no. 14, 144501. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevB.108.144501

Palle, G, Hicks, C, Valenti, R, Hu, Z, Li, Y-S, Rost, A, Nicklas, M, Mackenzie, A & Schmalian, J 2023, 'Constraints on the superconducting state of Sr2RuO4 from elastocaloric measurements', Physical Review B, vol. 108, no. 9, 094516. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevB.108.094516

Guguchia, Z, Das, D, Simutis, G, Adachi, T, Küspert, J, Kitajima, N, Elender, M, Grinenko, V, Ivashko, O, Zimmermann, MV, Müller, M, Mielke, C, Hotz, F, Mudry, C, Baines, C, Bartkowiak, M, Shiroka, T, Koike, Y, Amato, A, Hicks, CW, Gu, GD, Tranquada, JM, Klauss, H-H, Chang, JJ, Janoschek, M & Luetkens, H 2023, 'Designing the stripe-ordered cuprate phase diagram through uniaxial-stress', Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, vol. 121, no. 1, 2303423120. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2303423120

Noad, H, Ishida, K, Li, Y-S, Gati, E, Stangier, V, Kikugawa, N, Sokolov, D, Nicklas, M, Kim, B, Mazin, I, Garst, M, Schmalian, J, Mackenzie, A & Hicks, C 2023, 'Giant lattice softening at a Lifshitz transition in Sr2RuO4', Science, vol. 382, no. 6669, pp. 447-450. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.adf3348

Abarca Morales, E, Siemann, GR, Zivanovic, A, Murgatroyd, PAE, Marković, I, Edwards, B, Hooley, CA, Sokolov, DA, Kikugawa, N, Cacho, C, Watson, MD, Kim, TK, Hicks, CW, Mackenzie, AP & King, PDC 2023, 'Hierarchy of Lifshitz Transitions in the Surface Electronic Structure of Sr2RuO4 under Uniaxial Compression', Physical Review Letters, vol. 130, no. 9, 096401. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.130.096401

Zuniga-Cespedes, BE, Manna, K, Noad, HML, Yang, P, Nicklas, M, Felser, C, Mackenzie, AP & Hicks, CW 2023, 'Observation of an anomalous Hall effect in single-crystal Mn3Pt', New Journal of Physics, vol. 25, no. 2, 023029. https://doi.org/10.1088/1367-2630/acbc3f

Yang, P-Y, Noad, H, Barber, M, Kikugawa, N, Sokolov, D, Mackenzie, A & Hicks, C 2023, 'Probing Momentum-Dependent Scattering in Uniaxially Stressed Sr2RuO4 through the Hall Effect', Physical Review Letters, vol. 131, no. 3, 036301. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.131.036301

Waite, R, Orlandi, F, Sokolov, DA, Ribeiro, RA, Canfield, PC, Manuel, P, Khalyavin, DD, Hicks, CW & Hayden, SM 2023, 'Spin-density-wave order controlled by uniaxial stress in CeAuSb2', Physical Review B, vol. 106, no. 22, 224415. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevB.106.224415

Jakovac, I, Dioguardi, A, Grbic, M, Gu, G, Tranquada, J, Hicks, C, Pozek, M & Graefe, H-J 2023, 'Uniaxial stress study of spin and charge stripes in La1.875Ba0.125CuO4 by 139La NMR and 63Cu NQR', Physical Review B, vol. 108, no. 20, 205113. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevB.108.205113

Jerzembeck, F, Steppke, A, Pustogow, A, Luo, Y, Chronister, A, Sokolov, DA, Kikugawa, N, Li, Y, Nicklas, M, Brown, SE, Mackenzie, AP & Hicks, CW 2023, 'Upper critical field of Sr2RuO4 under in-plane uniaxial pressure', Physical Review B, vol. 107, no. 6, 064509. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevB.107.064509

Grinenko, V, Sarkar, R, Ghosh, S, Das, D, Guguchia, Z, Luetkens, H, Shipulin, I, Ramires, A, Kikugawa, N, Maeno, Y, Ishida, K, Hicks, CW & Klauss, H 2023, 'μSR measurements on Sr2RuO4 under ⟨110⟩ uniaxial stress', Physical Review B, vol. 107, no. 2, 107. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevB.107.024508

Barber, ME, Kim, H, Loew, T, Le tacon, M, Minola, M, Konczykowski, M, Keimer, B, Mackenzie, AP & Hicks, CW 2022, 'Dependence of Tc of YBa2Cu3O6.67 on in-plane uniaxial stress', Physical Review B, vol. 106, no. 18, 184516. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevB.106.184516

Li, Y, Garst, M, Schmalian, J, Ghosh, S, Kikugawa, N, Sokolov, DA, Hicks, CW, Jerzembeck, F, Ikeda, MS, Hu, Z, Ramshaw, BJ, Rost, AW, Nicklas, M & Mackenzie, AP 2022, 'Elastocaloric determination of the phase diagram of Sr2RuO4', Nature, vol. 607, no. 7918, pp. 276-280. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-022-04820-z

Kim, HH, Ueda, K, Nakata, S, Wochner, P, Mackenzie, A, Hicks, C, Khaliullin, G, Liu, H, Keimer, B & Minola, M 2022, 'Giant stress response of terahertz magnons in a spin-orbit Mott insulator', Nature Communications, vol. 13, no. 1, 6674. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-022-34375-6

View all publications in research portal