Professor Andrew Briggs is the inaugural holder of the Chair of Nanomaterials at the University of Oxford. His research interests focus on materials and techniques for quantum technologies and their incorporation into practical devices. Current hot topics include vibrational states of nanotubes and charge transport through single molecules in graphene nanogaps. He has more than 600 publications, with over 24,000 citations.

Obituary of David Briggs

David Briggs, father of Professor Andrew Briggs, died on 16 March 2020 at the age of 102. He sang in the first BBC broadcast of Nine Lessons and Carols on Christmas Eve 1928. Ninety years later he spoke about that experience in a BBC broadcast on Christmas Day 2018. His obituary in the Telegraph on 24 March is available here.

Recent Highlights

Machine Learning helps open up new possibilities for quantum devices.

University of Oxford, in collaboration with University of Basel and Lancaster University, have developed an algorithm that can be used to measure quantum dots automatically. Read further.

The Open Access paper can be found here: Efficiently measuring a quantum device using machine learning.


Using single-electron tunnelling to generate nanomechanical oscillations

This paper has been featured as a research highlight in Nature Reviews Materials : Pumping up and Cooling down [PDF]

The original paper can be found here : A coherent nanomechanical oscillator driven by single-electron tunnelling

This technique will provide a crucial experimental capability for a new programme of research on non-equilibrium nanoscale thermodynamics, in both classical and quantum regimes.

Recently Published


  • Role of metallic leads and electronic degeneracies in thermometric power generation in quantum dots. A. Harzheim, Jakub K. Sowa, Jacob L. Swett, G. Andrew D. Briggs, Jan A. Mol and P. Gehring. Phys.Rev. Research, 10 February 2020. [PDF]
  • Radio-frequency optomechanical characterization of a silicon nitride drum. A. N. Pearson, K. E. Khosla, M. Mergenthaler, G. A. D. Briggs, E. A. Laird & N. Ares. Nature Research (2020). [PDF]
  • Large amplitude charge noise and random telegraph fluctuations in room-temperature graphene single-electron transistors. Japser P. Fried, Xinya Bian, Jacob L. Swett, Ivan I. Kravchencko, G. A. D. Briggs and Jan A. Mol. Nanoscale, 5 December 2019. [PDF]
  • Efficiently measuring a quantum device using machine learning.  T. Lennon, H. Moon, L.C. Camenzind, L. Yu, D.M. Zumbühl, G.A.D. Briggs, M.A. Osborne, E.A. Laird and N. Ares. npj Quantum Information 5, 79 (2019). [PDF]
  • Charge-state assignment of nanoscale single-electron transistors from their current-voltage characteristics. Limburg, J.O. Thomas, J.K. Sowa, K. Willick, J. Baugh, E.M. Gauger, G.A.D. Briggs, H.L. Anderson and J.A. Mol. Nanoscale 11, 14820-14827 (2019). [PDF]
  • Metal atom markers for imaging epitaxial molecular self-assembly on graphene by scanning transmission electron microscopy. J.K. Lee, I. Bulut, M. Rickhaus, Y. Sheng, X. Li, G.G.D. Han, G.A.D. Briggs, H.L. Anderson and J.H. Warner. ACS Nano 13, 7252-7260 (2019). [PDF]
  • A coherent nanomechanical oscillator driven by single-electron tunnelling. Yutian Wen, N.Ares, F. J. Schupp, T. Pei, G. A. D. Briggs & E. A. Laird. Nature Physics, 2019. [PDF]
  • Atomic scale imaging of reversible ring cyclization in graphene nanoconstrictions. J.K. Lee, G.-D. Lee, S. Lee, E. Yoon, H.L. Anderson, G.A.D. Briggs and J.H. Warner.  ACS Nano, 2019. [PDF]
  • Quantum Interference in Silicon 1D Junctionless Nanowire Field-Effect Transistors. F. J. Schupp, M.M. Mirza, D.A. MacLaren, G.A.D. Briggs, D.J. Paul, and J.A. Mol. Phys.Rev.B, 2019. [PDF]
  • Ethical considerations in the era of gene synthesis. G.A.D Briggs, T Brears.  MedNous 8-10 January 2019[PDF] §

The Penultimate Curiosity Update

The Penultimate Curiosity received an Honorable Mention in the 2019 Expanded Reason Awards.

Interview with Andrew Briggs.

The Penultimate Curiosity documentary film is now available on line for streaming.

All six books in The Curious Science Quest series have now been published by Lion Hudson:  Cave DiscoveryGreek Adventure, Rocky Road to Galileo, Hunt with Newton, Victorian Voyages and Modern Flights.  Further information on this series.

Werner Herzog discusses The Penultimate Curiosity with Andrew Briggs and Roger Wagner at Chapman. Please click to watch.