Nanotechnology and Smart Devices

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Fundamental research into devices, circuits, and systems at different scales is needed to engineer solutions to challenges in medicine and health care, energy harvesting and storage, sensing the environment, and in other domains.  For example, multifunctional nanomaterials can enable new dynasties of devices with unprecedented characteristics, which can be incorporated into next-generation energy-efficient circuits for novel embedded systems. In turn, such “smart” embedded systems can unlock medical diagnostic and therapeutic applications which would be unimaginable today and with the potential to revolutionize healthcare and medicine.  Another important and game-changing application of nanotechnology is in the broad area of information processing. All the emerging computing paradigms, e.g., quantum computing, neuromorphic computing, and in-memory computing, are inherently based on nanotechnology. Last but not least, nanotechnology is becoming that indispensable tool required to bridge multiple disciplines and thus has a significant impact on other vital areas including AI and big data, cybersecurity, and power electronics. Therefore, this thrust is focused on fundamental research into devices, circuits, and systems from the nano-scale to a complete application solution.

Current ECE Focus:

Today, ECE faculty are active in all the aforementioned application areas of nanotechnology, particularly, biomedical applications, energy harvesting, information processing and storage. The faculty have strengths in all the four main themes of nanotechnology including nanophotonics, microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), nanoelectronics and nanomagnetics/spintronics. Understanding that crossing disciplinary boundaries is the driving horse of nanotechnology, the faculty are active in units beyond ECE, e.g., the operation and management of BioNIUM Center, Sylvester Cancer Center, The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, and the Radiology Center.

Opportunities for Interdisciplinary Collaboration:

As within the other thrusts, there are numerous possibilities for collaboration within CoE.  There are also a number of opportunities for collaboration with other units such as Arts & Sciences (e.g., chemistry, physics), RSMAS, and the MSM (e.g., pathology, surgery).

COE Thrust Supported: Health Care Engineering, Advanced Materials, Data Sciences

Graduate Courses Offered: 

ECE 603 (Laser Communications), ECE 604 (Fundamentals of Optical Imaging), ECE 605 (Semiconductor Photonic Devices), ECE 606 (Microfabrication), ECE 632 (VLSI Systems), ECE 642 (MEMS: Sensors and Electronics), ECE 643 (BioNanotechnology), ECE 69x (Quantum Computing), ECE 79x (Nanophotonics)

Number of PhD Students and Research Personnel:  7

Faculty Participants:

Coordinator: Sakhrat Khizroev
ECE Members: Sakhrat Khizroev, Sung Jin Kim, Michael Wang, Onur Tigli

Other Department & Schools Participants:

College of Engineering: Biomedical Engineering: Ashutosh Agarwal, Courtney Dumont, Abishek Prasad; Civil, Architectural, and Environmental Engineering: Pratim Biswas, Luis Pestana; College of Arts and Sciences: Physics: Fulin Zuo, Sunxiang Huang, He Wang; Chemistry: March Knecht; School of Medicine: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology: Sylvia Daunert, Michal Toborek