Prof. Durgin is currently out of the office, serving on the Technical Advisory Group of HRL Laboratories. He will be back in the office on Friday.
Once again, we are proud to present the “GTPG in a Word Cloud” 2018 edition. This is where all of our research paper publications are fed into a word cloud to give an overview of what we worked on last year. Compare this to the 2017 edition. In 2018, “RFID”, “power”, and “antennas” reigned supreme. Picture courtesy www.wordclouds.com.
Jake Smith and Emily Backer graduated with their MSEE this May. Both helped tremendously with the microwave power transfer work in the lab, with Jake working on energy-harvesting circuits to drive sample light display and Emily designing a thin, holographic reflector arrays for high-powered sources. Jake now joins Texas Instruments in Dallas, TX while Emily is staying local in Duluth, GA as she starts a position at ViaSat. Congratulations on the great contributions you both made to our program as well as the new jobs with top-notch companies!
We should also note that Zach Silva successfully completed his MSEE, as noted earlier, but will be returning to GT for the PhD program in the Fall.
2015: Francesco Amato builds the first microwave Quantum Tunneling Tag (QTR). This 5.8 GHz tag will scatter a signal over a kilometer across midtown Atlanta, consuming only 23 microWatts in the process.
It started with a simple test question back in 2008 and snowballed into a research program. In 2015, Francesco Amato built and demonstrated the world’s first “quantum tunneling tag” (QTR), which is an antenna terminated in a tunnel diode that, when biased with minimal DC voltage, acts as a microwave reflection amplifier. The most dramatic display of the power of a QTR came when Francesco scattered a detectable signal 1.2 km across midtown Atlanta while consuming only 23 microWatts of power.
Fun fact #1: The 1.2 km measurement used a QTR mounted on the 10-story swimming pool deck of ECE accountant Siri Melkote, who was kind enough to allow access to her condo.
Fun fact #2: Tunnel diodes are, conceptually, on of the simplest semiconductor devices you can imagine: just and over-doped PN-junction. Leo Esaki won the Nobel Prize for their invention back in 1973. However, there are very few mainstream applications for the devices, meaning that the GTPG pays nearly $50 per device to construct its RF tags!