Dr Steve Baker

photoTeaching Fellow

BA (Hons), PhD (Dundee)

Tel: 0116 252 3584

Email: bak@le.ac.uk

Office: Room F53, 1st Floor Physics Building



I completed my BA degree in Physics at Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge in 1985 before moving to the University of Dundee, where I studied the electronic properties of the amorphous silicon-carbide alloy system for my Ph.D. In 1990, I took up a post-doctoral position in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Leicester where I studied the optical and structural properties of amorphous III-V semiconductors. In 1993, I stayed in the same department as a post-doctoral research associate to study magnetic nanoparticles. Following this, I was employed variously in several positions as a research associate or temporary lecturer while continuiung to develop my interests in magnetic nanocomposites and cluster-assembled materials. In 2010 I was appointed as a lecturer in nanoscience before, in 2017, becoming a teaching fellow. Outside Physics, my interests include bird watching, hill walking, good food and wine and (occasionally) malt whisky.


In 2017/2018, I teach on the following  modules and courses

  • PA2230 (Condensed Matter) - module leader
  • PA2900 (Laboratory Physics) - module leader
  • PA2602 (Intermediate Astrophysics and Applied Physics) - module leader
  • PA2605 (Intermediate Applied Physics and Space Science) - module leader
  • PA2606 (Intermediate Applied Physics and Modern Physics) - module leader
  • Opt.3635 (Magnetic Materials) - module leader
  • Opt.4621 (Nanostructure) - module leader
  • NS3017 (Molecular Cell Biology and Nanoscience)

I also regularly supervise a number of final year research projects and advanced study projects. 

My departmental administrative duties in 2017/2018 include the overall supervision of Level 1 and Level 2 Core GRePs (Group Research Projects), and the "Head of Laboratories" role.

I have been a member of the Departmental Teaching Committee since 2011, and sat on the College Academic Committee from 2011-2016.

In 2012 I was made a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Selected Publications

  • Structure and Magnetism in Cr-embedded Co Nanoparticles. S.H.Baker, M.S.Kurt, M.Roy, M.R.Lees and C.Binns (2016) J. Phys.:Condens. Matter 28 046003
  • Magnetic Anisotropy and Magnetisation Dynamics of Fe Nanoparticles embedded in Cr  and Ag Matrices. D.Peddis, M.T.Qureshi, S.H.Baker, C.Binns, M.Roy, S.Lauretti, D.Fiorani, P.Nordblad and R.Mathieu (2015) Phil. Mag. 95 3798
  • Memory Effects on the Magnetic Behaviour of Assemblies of Nanoparticles with a Ferromagnetic/Antiferromagnetic Core/Shell Morphology. M.Vasilakaki, K.N.Trohidou, D.Peddis, D.Fiorani, R.Mathieu, M.Hudl, P.Nordblad, C.Binns and S.Baker (2013) Phys.Rev.B 88 140402
  • Structure and Magnetism in Fe/FexPd1-x core/shell Nanoparticles formed by alloying in Pd-embedded Fe Nanoparticles. S.H.Baker, M.Lees, M.Roy and C.Binns (2013) J. Phys.:Condens. Matter 25 386004
  • Exchange Bias in Fe@Cr Core-Shell Nanoparticles. C.Binns, M.T.Qureshi, D.Peddis, S.H.Baker, P.B.Howes, A.Boatwright, S.A.Cavill, S.S.Dhesi, L.Lari, R.Kröger and S.Langridge (2013) Nanoletters
  • Preparation of Hydrosol Suspensions of Elemental and Core-Shell Nanoparticles by Co-Deposition with Water Vapour from the Gas-Phase in Ultra-High Vacuum Conditions. C. Binns, P. Prieto, S. Baker, P. Howes, R. Dondi, G. Burley, L. Lari, R. Kröger, A. Pratt, S. Atkas and J. K. Mellon (2012) J. Nanopart. Res. 14 1136
  • Realizing High Magnetic Moments in fcc Fe Nanoparticles through Atomic Structure Stretch. S.H.Baker, M.Roy, S.C.Thornton and C. Binns (2012) J. Phys.:Condens. Matter 24 176001
  • Probing Atomic Structure in Magnetic Core/Shell Nanoparticles using Synchrotron Radiation. S.H.Baker, M.Roy, S.C.Thornton, M.Qureshi and C.Binns (2010) J.Phys.:Condens. Matter 22 38501
  • Extended X-ray Absorption Fine Structure Studies of the Atomic Structure of Nanoparticles in Different Metallic Matrices. S.H.Baker, M.Roy, S.J.Gurman and C.Binns (2009) J.Phys.:Condens.Matter 21 183002


  • Full publications list [link]

Research interests

The main focus of my research is on magnetic nanoparticles and nanocomposite materials.

I have more then twenty years of expertise in designing and operating sources that are capable of depositing nanomaterials under controlled and ultra-clean conditions. A high degree of control over the preparation of nanomaterials is an essential part of realising their potential applications; these include magnetic recording, high efficiency electric motors and various biomedical applications.

I am interested in looking at how novel and artificial structures can be engineered into nanoparticles in a controllable way, and how this can used to establish a high degree of control over the magnetism in new cluster-assembled materials. Synchrotron based x-ray techniques play an important part in my research, for probing both atomic structure and also magnetic properties. I am a frequent user at synchrotron sources such as the DIAMOND light source and the ESRF.

I have a long standing interest in EXAFS (extended x-ray absorption fine structure) and am an experienced user in the technique.

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Contact Details

Tel.: +44 (0)116 252 3506
Fax: +44 (0)116 252 2770

Department of Physics & Astronomy,
University of Leicester,
University Road,
Leicester, LE1 7RH,
United Kingdom.


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