Blakely has a long standing reputation in the field of materials science and condensed matter physics with emphasis on surface and interface science. He has contributed to studies of a wide variety of types of material including metals, ceramics, and inorganic and organic semiconductors. The focus of the research in his group has been the relationship between the properties of solid surfaces and their structure and composition. He pioneered the use of patterning techniques in the study of surface mass transport at surfaces due to atomic diffusion. Other principal areas of research have included the kinetics of solid-liquid phase transitions, the thermodynamics and kinetics of self assembled monolayer structures including Graphene due to adsorption or segregation, the energetics and dynamics of atomic steps on surfaces, the role of surface charged layers in photographic and other ionic materials, adsorbed phases and the oxidation process on alloy surfaces, the structure and composition of glass surfaces. Experimental techniques of his group have included electron diffraction and spectroscopies, glancing incidence synchrotron X-ray methods, nanofabrication methods and scanning probe microscopy.
He is the author/contributing editor of four books in the area of Surface Science: Introduction to the Properties of Crystal Surfaces, Pergamon Press (1973), Surface Physics of Materials, Vol. I and II, Academic Press, (1975), Interfacial Segregation, with W.C. Johnson, A.S.M. (1978). He has taught a broad range of undergraduate courses and currently offers graduate courses on Statistical Thermodynamics of Materials, Surfaces and Interfaces and on Structure of Materials.
Research has been focused mainly on the surface properties of semiconductors with emphasis on the control of morphology at the atomic level. Part of the work is closely related to the improvement of reliable gate oxide -semiconductor interfaces in transistor structures. Developing atomically controlled substrates for improving the epitaxy or texture of deposited inorganic and organic thin film device material has been a feature of the group's interactive work. Combining recent work on the atomic control of surface morphology with past work on the growth of the graphene phase of carbon is a current research interest. Follow the link below to see a summary of what we believe to be the first set of papers describing an extensive study of the formation of <b>Graphene</b> on metal surfaces. <b>Graphene</b> was shown to be a stable C phase formed by adsorption from a vapor or by segregation from a solid solution. The term 'graphene' was not used in these papers but it was referred to as a monolayer graphite phase The link is to a paper presented by Jack Blakely at a Florida AVS meeting Mar 2011.
- 2007. "Morphological evidence for surface pre-melting on Si(111)." Surface Science 601: 5459. .
- 2006. "Using atomic steps to induce texture in polycrystalline pentacene films." Applied Physics Letters 89 (25). .
- 2000. "Formation and Stability of Large Step-free Areas on Si(001) and Si(111)." Surface Science 445: 32. .
- 2000. "Surface and Interfacial Morphology of Oxides on Si(111) with Ultra-Low Atomic Step Density." Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology B 18: 2862. .
- 1974. "Equilibrium Segregation of Carbon to a Nickel (111) Surface: A Surface Phase Transition." Surface Science 43: 25. .
Selected Awards and Honors
- Science & Engineering Research (SERC) Fellow (University of York, U.K.) 1984
- Elected Fellow of American Physical Society and Fellow of Institute of Physics (U.K.) 1978
- N.S.F. Fellow (University of California, Berkeley) 1977
- Guggenheim Fellow (Cavendish Lab, Cambridge U.K.) 1970
- Kelvin Prize in Experimental Physics 1960
- BS (PHYSICS, GENL (EXCL BIOPHYS)), UNIV OF GLASGOW (UK), 1958
- Ph D (PHYSICS, GENL (EXCL BIOPHYS)), UNIV OF GLASGOW (UK), 1961
- Ph D (Natural Philosophy (Physics)), Glasgow University, 1961