Professor Jeff Tallon

Emeritus Investigator

Phone: 021 445 367

Postal Address:

Robinson Research Institute
Victoria University of Wellington
PO Box 600
Wellington 6140

Professor Jeff Tallon is Professor of Physics at Robinson Research Institute, Victoria University of Wellington. He is internationally known for his research and discoveries in high-Tc superconductors (HTS), which are currently being developed for applications across all sectors – health, transport, energy, mining and minerals processing, and the research sector. His research includes the physics and materials science of HTS – thermodynamics, magnetism, electronic transport properties, novel materials, and flux pinning.  Jeff’s other research interests include nanotechnology, hybrid organic/inorganic materials, spin crossover materials and physics at high pressure. He has received many awards for his work, including the Rutherford Medal, the Dan Walls Medal for Physics and, along with Dr Bob Buckley, the inaugural Prime Minister’s Science Medal. Professor Tallon is a Visiting Professor at the Cavendish laboratory, Cambridge University and EPFL, Lausanne.  Jeff is Chair of the MacDiarmid Institute International Science Advisory Board.  



Research Interests

Focus on achieving a thermodynamic understanding of High Tc Superconductors by determining the pressure-, temperature-, doping- and ion-size-dependence of all the important energy and length scales pertinent to superconductivity using specific heat, Raman, NMR and muon spin relaxation.  



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 […]


Public Lecture Series: The Energy Revolution

The age of fossil fuels is coming to an end.  Global warming from their burning is undeniable.  But when will tomorrow begin? Will there be a long transition period, with a mish-mash of renewables while we learn to harness the sun’s energy efficiently, as plants have been doing for 3.5 billion years?  Is there even enough sunlight […]

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 […]

Jeff Tallon – Asking The Big Questions

  Jeff’s internationally renowned research focuses on high-Tc superconductors (HTS), particularly the physics and materials science of HTS – thermodynamics, magnetism, electronic transport properties, novel materials, and flux pinning. He’s been a research scientist for 46 years – working through three versions of the same government body – DSIR, IRL, and now, Callaghan Innovation. During […]

Chance Only Favours the Prepared Mind

Looking back at eleven years of the MacDiarmid Institute for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology   “When you’ve got the equipment, the expertise, and the space to think about problems in a different way, the research almost tells its own story.”   Popular culture delights in the concept of scientific serendipity: Alexander Fleming discovering penicillin after […]

Chasing Synchrotron Radiation Around the World

  What do you do when almost every piece of equipment you need for your research can only be found overseas? The answer’s pretty obvious – you go overseas. That’s what MacDiarmid Institute Associate Investigator Bridget Ingham did. After completing her PhD at Victoria, under the supervision of Professors Jeff Tallon and Alan Kaiser, she […]

Collaborating On A (Very) Small Scale

    Casual conversations over conference tea-cups, chance meetings in stairwells, idle flicking through a journal – these may not sound like the stuff of which scientific endeavours are made, but they can provide a surprisingly significant role in the development of research projects and collaborations that span an organisation, a city, sometimes even the […]

Distinguished Awards in 2011

  Professor Jeff Tallon was awarded the 2011 New Zealand Institute of Physics’ Dan Walls Medal. The Dan Walls medal is awarded to the physicist working in New Zealand for at least the past ten years who is deemed to have made the greatest impact, both nationally and internationally, in his/her field of research. Jeff is a […]


Teamwork facilitates a detailed pressure-induced spin crossover study

Our team around Principal Investigator Sally Brooker, Associate Investigator Geoff Jameson and Emeritus Investigator Jeff Tallon took on the challange and investigated a first row transition metal complex upon their spin states under the influence of external stimuli such as pressure and temperature. When the ligand field in octahedral d4-d7 first row transition metal complexes […]


MacDiarmid Institute Refunded: Thank you and congratulations

With the news that we have been successful in gaining funding through to the end of 2020 I get to be a bit self-indulgent this week and focus on thanking people for their participation and support during the past year or so as we developed the strategy for the bid. Many people have played very […]


The Christmas Wrap

We’ve had another big year. We welcomed two new Deputy Directors Profs David Williams (UoA) and Alison Downard (UoC) (Shaun Hendy stepping down at the end of last year and Simon Brown at mid year). We also welcomed six new Principal Investigators (Natalie Plank (VUW), Cather Simpson (UoA), John Kennedy (GNS), Duncan McGillivray (UoA), Bernd […]


The Bid is Gone – YAY – let the doing begin!

Eight months of living and breathing the MacDiarmid Institute Centre of Research Excellence funding proposal to come down to a click of the mouse. Where were the trumpets, the marching band, the ticker tape parade?! Shouldn’t such a momentous occasion be marked with an explosion of lights and fanfare rather than the soft snoring sound […]


Marsden Success 2013

Four Principal Investigators of The MacDiarmid Institute have been awarded Marsden Fund grants. Congratulations to Principal Investigators Profs Sally Brooker (Otago) Alison Downard (Canterbury) and Jeff Tallon (Callaghan Innovation) and Associate Investigator Dr Franck Natali (Victoria) for their success as the lead scientists on newly awarded Marsden grants. Graphene supercapacitors: transforming energy storage solutions Professor […]


Jeff Tallon Victoria University of Wellington Distinguished Alumni

Jeff has many plaudits already including being awarded the Royal Society of New Zealand’s top award; the Rutherford Medal in 2002, jointly being presented the Inaugural Prime Minister’s Science Prize in 2009 with Dr Bob Buckley his long-time colleague, collaborator and friend and receiving a DSC from VUW in 1997. Jeff has held a James […]


New IAB Chair

Distinguished scientist and new MacDiarmid Institute International Advisory Board Chair, Dr Jeff Tallon spent his formative years mucking about in sheds with crystal sets and Popular Mechanics, taking things apart and figuring out how to put them back again. This quintessential Kiwi childhood has led to an international career at the vanguard of superconductor research, […]

Transport in the Nanoworld

Understanding of nanofluidics has the potential to revolutionise the way in which particle sensing and analysis, and ultimately molecular biology, is done. We seek to manipulate transport of fluid and particles in and around micro- to nano-scale devices, individual pores and porous materials. We use elastomeric tunable nanopores to study a wide range of interesting […]