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Francis Wright Davis Professor of Physics
Director, Institute for Soldier Nanotechnologies
Name: John D. Joannopoulos
Title(s): Francis Wright Davis Professor of Physics
Phone: (617) 253-4806
Assistant: Margaret O'Meara (617) 253-4878
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Area of Physics:
The research of Prof. Joannopoulos has spanned two major directions. The first is devoted to creating a realistic and microscopic theoretical description of the properties of material systems. His approach is fundamental to predicting geometric, electronic and dynamical structure, ab-initio—that is, given only the atomic numbers of the constituent atoms as experimental input. Ab-initio investigations are invaluable because they can stand on their own, complement experimental observations, and probe into regimes inaccessible to experiment. Examples of recent work include the elucidation of electron transport in water and the deliberate computer design of a new semiconductor alloy for use as a novel optoelectronic material.
The second major direction, and current major thrust, involves the development of a new class of materials called photonic crystals, which are designed to affect the properties of photons in much the same way that semiconductors effect the properties of electrons. These materials provide a new dimension in the ability to control and mold the flow of light. Efforts include the design of novel channel drop microfilters, high efficiency LEDs, low threshold microlasers, low-loss waveguide bends and intersections, one-way waveguides, and novel THz sources.
Professor John D. Joannopoulos is the Francis Wright Davis Professor of Physics at MIT. He is the author or coauthor of over 540 refereed journal articles, two textbooks on photonic crystals, and over 60 U.S. Patents. He is also co-founder of four startup companies: OmniGuide, Inc., Luminus Devices, Inc., WiTricity Corporation, and Typhoon HIL, Inc. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, a Fellow of the American Physical Society, a Fellow of the World Technology Network, an Alfred P. Sloan Fellow (1976-80), a John S. Guggenheim Fellow (1981-82), and has been on the Thompson ISI Most Highly Cited Researchers List since 2003. Professor Joannopoulos is the recipient of the MIT School of Science Graduate Teaching Award (1991), the William Buechner Teaching Prize of the MIT Department of Physics (1996), and the David Adler Award of the American Physical Society (1997). He is a former Divisional Associate Editor of Physical Review Letters, and former Member of the Editorial Board of Reviews of Modern Physics. Currently he is Director of the Institute for Soldier Nanotechnologies at MIT.
Last updated on July 25, 2013 4:56 PM