Simon Granville

Dr Simon Granville

Associate Investigator

Phone: 04 463 0074

Postal Address:

Robinson Research Institute
Victoria University of Wellington
PO Box 33436
Lower Hutt 5046

Simon GranvilleSimon was among the first group of MacDiarmid Institute PhD students, completing his research on thin film magnetic semiconductors in 2006 at Victoria University. From 2007 to 2010 Simon was a postdoc at the Institut de Physique des Nanostructures at the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, EPFL, in Lausanne, Switzerland. While there he worked on understanding the fundamental physics of spintronics in multilayer magnetic nanowires and dilute magnetic semiconductor thin films. Simon’s work helped give birth to the new and exciting prospects for future electronic devices from the intersection of spintronics and thermoelectrics, in a field now widely known as spin caloritronics (see video). Simon has been an Associate Investigator with the MacDiarmid Institute since 2011. Outside of the Institute, Simon is a keen hockey player and secretary of the VUW Hockey Club, he is a committee member of the Wellington Early Career Researchers’ Association and a fan of Doctor Who and pro wrestling.  



Research Interests

Simon Granville is a research physicist in Victoria University’s Robinson Research Institute, in Lower Hutt. His research is in the area of magnetic materials and magnetic sensors, working to produce high performance thin film magnetic sensors for use in areas such as battery monitoring and flaw detection in metal structures. Simon is also active in spin-electronics, or spintronics, research, exploring the magnetic and magneto-transport properties of exotic magnetic materials such as the half-metallic Heusler alloys, which will ultimately result in the next generation of magnetic sensor technologies. He enthusiastically works with many others within the MacDiarmid Institute, including with Joe Trodahl and Ben Ruck’s highly successful project on rare-earth nitride thin films, with John Kennedy and Roger Reeves on magnetic materials, and with Natalie Plank on developing sensor structures. Simon co-manages and operates the MacDiarmid Institute magnetic property measurement equipment – the Quantum DesignTM SQUID MPMS and PPMS systems. Simon encourages anyone to contact him about his work or how it might overlap with their own projects and understanding, especially where it involves magnetism, magnetic sensors or in the field of spintronics.  

Associated Content


Stuart Wimbush: From materials to systems

Story by Ruth Beran Commercialising high temperature superconductors is what the 25 scientists and engineers at the Robinson Research Institute (RRI) do best. Formerly part of IRL, and called the Superconductivity and Energy Team, the RRI is now part of Victoria University of Wellington. The Robinson Research Institute was named after the late Dr Bill […]


Videos – Meet our scientists

During AMN-7 the Science Media Centre “SAVVY Express” team offered our Investigators and students targeted 15 minute sessions to practice speaking about their research on-camera, with feedback and training from a professional interviewer. The result is a series of seventeen interesting 90 second videos all of which are now available to watch via SMC’s Youtube channel, or you can […]

The Inspiration of The Doctor

We can thank the Third Doctor for Simon Granville’s career choices. Simon always thought that he’d like to be a diplomat or a scientist —but watching Jon Pertwee play about with interesting gadgets and technology on Doctor Who swung his decision in science’s favour.  The exhaustive Wikipedia entry for the Third Doctor describes him as […]

Controlling their own destiny

The scientific legacy of Dr Bill Robinson is a new Institute at Victoria University Wellington bearing his name. The Robinson Research Institute is a newly-formed institute at Victoria which comprises the 25 scientists and engineers who previously formed the Superconductivity & Energy team at Callaghan Innovation (formerly IRL). This team has moved in its entirety from their previous employer to Victoria University […]

An Alumnus Returns

Attending this year’s symposium was MacDiarmid graduate Simon Granville, who has been living in Lausanne, Switzerland for the past four years. He’s been there researching fundamental magnetism and spintronics for his post-doc at the École Polytechnique Fédérale deLausanne (EPFL). During his time there, his research has centred mainly on spin valves – magnetic nanostructures that have been developed […]

And now for something completely different – ?

  The MacDiarmid Institute has completely changed my retirement — a carefully planned withdrawal from research. Among other things it introduced me to a professor from Lausanne who attended AMN-2 in Queenstown. That chance meeting, and a discussion we had about some Raman data I had on a complex ferroelectric, Cd pyroniobate, resulted in an […]

Post-graduate Students Take the Spotlight

From developing new tools for medical imaging, to investigating innovative materials for use in solar cells, to studying the growth of the delicate spines of sea urchins, the postgraduate students at the MacDiarmid Institute are a fascinating and diverse bunch – and that is just their work. In their spare time, the group has hobbies as diverse as Bollywood dancing, […]