News Releases from 2014


Sensors company founded by alumni wins award for their innovative products

Electrozyme, a company founded by a team of engineering alumni at the University of California, San Diego, won a Most Innovative New Product Award from CONNECT. The company has deep roots at the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego, where co-founders Joshua Windmiller and Jared Tangney both earned their Ph.Ds. They also worked closely with the von Liebig Entrepreneurism Center and the Gordon Engineering Leadership Center at the school since 2010.  Full Story


CWC 5G Wireless Forum: The Promise and the Potential of a New User Experience

What’s certain is that 5G is coming. What’s less certain is what 5G will look like once it arrives.It’s a testament to the excitement building around emerging fifth-generation (5G) wireless technologies that with only one month’s notice, 130 key experts from academia, government and industry met at the University of California, San Diego for the recent CWC 5G Forum on Next-Generation Wireless Systems – an opportunity to share insights, best practices and remaining research questions about the emerging systems and applications that are expected to drive 5G user experience. Full Story


Researchers generate tunable photon-pair spectrum using a room temperature quantum optics silicon chip

A team of researchers from the University of California, San Diego have demonstrated a way to emit and control quantum light generated using a chip made from silicon—one of the most widely used materialsfor modern electronics. The UC San Diego researchers recently described their new device’s performanceonline in the journal Nature Communications, available via Open Access. Full Story


Researchers Demonstrate New Way To Plug 'Leaky' Light Cavities

Engineers at the University of California, San Diego have demonstrated a new and more efficient way to trap light, using a phenomenon called bound states in the continuum (BIC) that was first proposed in the early days of quantum wave mechanics. Full Story


A Sampler of Exciting Stories from 2014 from the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering

From robots to rockets and crowdfunding to cybersecurity, 2014 has been a busy year here at the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego. Below is a sample of the highlights of the past 12 months. (Be sure to check the Jacobs School press release archive for 2014, Jacobs School blog, and archive of press clips highlighting Jacobs School projects for a more comprehensive list.) Full Story


Two UC San Diego Computer Scientists, One Electrical Engineer Named IEEE Fellows

Three members of the Jacobs School of Engineering faculty at the University of California, San Diego have been elevated to be Fellows in the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). Computer Science and Engineering (CSE) Prof. David Kriegman was honored for his contributions to computer vision, and CSE Prof. Yuanyuan (YY) Zhou was cited for her “contributions to scalable algorithms and tools for computer reliability.” Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Prof. Young-Han Kim was honored for his contributions to feedback communication and network information theory. All three faculty members are also affiliated with the Qualcomm Institute. Full Story


Wireless Center at UC San Diego Organizes Forum on Future of 5G

Wireless technologies have revolutionized almost every aspect of our lives: the way we work, interact, and socialize. Global adoption and emerging applications are fueling expectations and debate about so-called fifth-generation, or 5G, wireless technologies, and the expectations, needs, and directions for 5G are not as clear as those for the previous digital generations (3G and 4G). The Center for Wireless Communications (CWC) at the University of California, San Diego is organizing and hosting the 5G Forum on Next-Generation Wireless Systems and Applications, bringing together key experts from industry, government and academia to present and discuss their vision and research roadmaps for 5G. Full Story


New Solar Power Material Converts 90 Percent of Captured Light into Heat

A multidisciplinary engineering team at the University of California, San Diego developed a new nanoparticle-based material for concentrating solar power plants designed to absorb and convert to heat more than 90 percent of the sunlight it captures. The new material can also withstand temperatures greater than 700 degrees Celsius and survive many years outdoors in spite of exposure to air and humidity. Their work, funded by the U.S. Department of Energy’s SunShot program, was published recently in two separate articles in the journal Nano Energy.  Full Story


With Phased-Array Radar Technologies, UC San Diego Electrical Engineers Aim to Make Car Travel Safer

Electrical engineers from UC San Diego have developed hardware for a new generation of automotive radar systems designed to keep drivers, and the pedestrians around them they may not see, safe. Full Story


Nineteen new faculty join the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego

Nineteen new faculty members will join the Jacobs School of Engineering this year, which is growing to meet the intense demand for its engineering education programs.  Full Story


Jacobs School Recruiting for 16 Positions in 2014-15

The Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego is recruiting for 16 open faculty positions in the 2014-15 academic year.  Currently, four recruitments have been posted—each of which can lead to more than one hire. The positions are focused through cluster hires in robotics, materials and energy, advanced manufacturing, information sciences, engineering and clinical medicine, and more.  Full Story


UC San Diego Researchers Build First 500 GHz Photon Switch

Electrical engineers at UC San Diego have built the first 500 Gigahertz (GHz) photon switch. “Our switch is more than an order of magnitude faster than any previously published result to date,” said UC San Diego electrical and computer engineering professor Stojan Radic. “That exceeds the speed of the fastest lightwave information channels in use today.” Full Story


Benefunder to Launch New Funding Channel for Higher Education Research

UC San Diego electrical engineering professor Gert Lanckriet is a co-founder of Benefunder, a San Diego-based philanthropic research funding platform for higher education institutions.   Full Story


Lasers could make hard drives faster, simpler and higher density

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego have discovered that for a wide range of ferromagnetic materials the direction of magnetization can be completely controlled by polarized light without the need for magnetic fields, a finding that could significantly affect the data memory and storage industries that produce hard disks and magnetic random access memories. Their research, published Aug. 21 in the journal Science Express, focused on materials currently being developed for high-density storage applications. Full Story


UC San Diego Professor Awarded $300K for Mobile Health Lab-on-Chip Technology

University of California, San Diego Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering Shaya Fainman has been awarded $300,000 from the National Science Foundation to develop a portable device with a disposable cartridge “lab-on-chip” (CLOC). The device will use bodily fluids to help people determine if they have a viral or bacterial infection or are experiencing an allergic reaction. Full Story


Qualcomm Institute Announces Seed Grants to Build Clusters in Brain, Medical and Robotics Research

The Qualcomm Institute at the University of California, San Diego has given the green light to 35 new projects that are part of the institute’s Calit2 Strategic Research Opportunities (CSRO) program. Each one-year seed grant is worth up to $50,000 in support for researchers in areas of critical interest to the research mission of the institute—and the university. (The Qualcomm Institute is the UC San Diego division of the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology, or Calit2.) Full Story


A GEM of a Prize

Two physician-engineer teams from UC San Diego have been selected as the 2014 recipients of the Galvanizing Engineering in Medicine (GEM) awards from the Clinical and Translational Research Institute (CTRI) and the Institute of Engineering in Medicine (IEM). GEM, an initiative of UC San Diego's CTRI and IEM, supports projects that identify clinical challenges for which engineering solutions can be developed and implemented to improve health care. Full Story


Electrical Engineering Alumnus from UC San Diego Shares in DARPA Spectrum Challenge Grand Prize

Adam Anderson (Ph.D. '08, electrical engineering) recently won the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Spectrum Challenge.  Full Story


An Interview with 2014 Research Expo Winner Ya-San Yeh

Ya-San Yeh, a University of California, San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering graduate student won the grand prize at Research Expo 2014 on April 17 for her research on silica nanoparticles for cancer treatment. Yeh received the Rudee Outstanding Poster Award as well as the best departmental poster in bioengineering.  We caught up with Yeh after the big win to talk about her research and what it is like to work on a problem as big as cancer. Updated May 14 with videos of Research Expo faculty talks.  Full Story


Silica Nanoparticles for Cancer Treatment Take Top Prize at Research Expo 2014

Ya-San Yeh, a University of California, San Diego graduate student working in the laboratory of electrical engineering and nanoengineering professor Sadik Esener, won the grand prize at Research Expo 2014 for her research on silica nanoparticles for cancer treatment. Yeh received the Rudee Outstanding Poster Award as well as the best departmental poster in bioengineering. Full Story


Engineers develop new device to cool chips at the micro scale

Engineers at the University of California, Berkeley and the University of California, San Diego, have built a novel evaporator structure that can cool chips with micro scale features. The structures are built on silicon chips for direct incorporation into electronics. Full Story


New Networks, New Research Questions

Engineers at UC San Diego and around the world are beginning to applying rigorous scientific methods to a range of new and emerging networks – including the networks of people who use the Internet. Full Story


Cymer Co-Founder Richard Sandstrom and Wife, Sandra Timmons, Give $1.2 Million for Students

University of California, San Diego alumni Sandra Timmons and Richard Sandstrom, co-founder of Cymer, Inc., are passionate about their alma mater and helping future students achieve the same world-class education they received at UC San Diego. That’s why the couple recently pledged a gift of $1.2 million to the campus for student support through their charitable Timmstrom Family Fund. The gift will be split, per the donors’ wishes, to support graduate students in the Jacobs School of Engineering and undergraduates through the Chancellor’s Associates Scholars program. Full Story


Engineering students help Boy Scouts earn badges

“A lot of times when you think about the skills Boy Scouts learn you think about tying knots, pioneering and fishing, not so much learning how to code,” said local Scout Leader Ron Anderson while his Vista-based troop defied that stereotype and worked through a programming tutorial in UC San Diego’s computer science laboratory in pursuit of their computer science merit badge. On March 8, more than 100 Boy Scouts descended on the UC San Diego campus to take part in the second annual merit badge fair organized by the campus’ chapter of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineering student. The local scouts – aged 11 to 18 – had the option of earning badges in either electrical engineering or computer programming. Full Story


Facebook Feelings Are Contagious, Study Shows

You can’t catch a cold from a friend online. But can you catch a mood? It would seem so, according to new research from the University of California, San Diego. Published in PLOS ONE, the study analyzes over a billion anonymized status updates among more than 100 million users of Facebook in the United States. Positive posts beget positive posts, the study finds, and negative posts beget negative ones, with the positive posts being more influential, or more contagious. “Our study suggests that people are not just choosing other people like themselves to associate with but actually causing their friends’ emotional expressions to change,” said lead author James Fowler, professor of political science in the Division of Social Sciences and of medical genetics in the School of Medicine at UC San Diego. “We have enough power in this data set to show that emotional expressions spread online and also that positive expressions spread more than negative.” Full Story


Coding for a Cause

Sneha Jayaprakash, a sophomore at UC San Diego, is passionate about two things: computer science and social change. As part of the 2013 Microsoft YouthSpark Challenge for Change contest, she developed a winning proposal for a mobile app to engage students with volunteerism and social issues—and received a prize of $2,500 to get the project going. Now, with an additional $10,000 awarded by the Microsoft Imagine Fund last month, Jayaprakash is getting the opportunity to turn her idea into a successful startup. Full Story


Dive into Technology's Future at Research Expo 2014

Research Expo will be held on Thursday, April 17, from 1:30 p.m. to 6p.m. Register today. The annual event features research posters by more than 200 engineering graduate students from UC San Diego, faculty talks, and a networking reception with faculty, students, industry partners and alumni. Full Story


How an Entrepreneurial Engineering Education Nurtured a Biotech Startup

Identify a real-world problem.  Engineer a solution. And, if the solution works, figure out how it can be commercially viable. That’s what Michael Benchimol said he learned over 7 years of working in the laboratory of Sadik Esener, a professor in the departments of NanoEngineering and Electrical and Computer Engineering. In Benchimol’s (Ph.D., Electrical Engineering, ’12) case, it specifically means building a company to advance a targeted drug delivery platform that could make chemotherapy more effective and less toxic to the healthy tissue in the body. Full Story


UC San Diego to Host Workshop to Explore the Potential of New Memory Technologies

The University of California, San Diego, will host the 5th Annual Non-Volatile Memories Workshop (NVMW 2014) on March 9 to 11.  The workshop will gather scientists and engineers from around the world to discuss the latest innovations in non-volatile computer memories; how they will be used to power increasingly sophisticated mobile electronic devices; and the role they will play in the era of “big data” and cloud computing. Full Story


UC San Diego Highlighted in Governor's State of the State Address

As Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. delivered his annual State of the State address to the Legislature yesterday, he highlighted the University of California, San Diego as a leader in developing medical and scientific advances. In prepared remarks, Gov. Brown noted, “Four out of the world’s 20 leading academic bioscience institutions are located here in California: UCSF and Berkeley, UCLA, Stanford and UC San Diego. Just as California has led the way with stem cell research, so too can we pioneer the new field of precision medicine which uses genomics, medical devices, computer sciences and other fields to treat individual patients, instead of broad populations.” Full Story


Material Developed by UC San Diego Engineers Could Speed Up Underwater Communications by Orders of Magnitude

University of California, San Diego electrical engineering professor Zhaowei Liu and colleagues have taken the first steps in a project to develop fast-blinking LED systems for underwater optical communications. In the January 6 issue of Nature Nanotechnology, Liu and colleagues show that an artificial metamaterial can increase the light intensity and “blink speed” of a fluorescent light-emitting dye molecule. Full Story


RF MEMS: New Possibilities for Smartphones

The antennas in most of today's smartphones do not function efficiently in 3G and 4G/LTE wireless environments. This leads to slower download speeds, reduced voice quality, lower energy efficiency and more dropped calls. A technology commonly used in satellite and defense applications-RF MEMS or Radio Frequency Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems-is now poised to improve smartphone performance in the near future by way of higher antenna efficiency. Full Story


How to Manage Mobile Medical App Development Under FDA Regulation

A consortium of six leading universities, more than a dozen industry trade associations and professional societies, and the U.S. Food & Drug Administration announced their unprecedented collaboration to develop a series of educational programs designed to help mobile app developers learn about FDA requirements for producing higher risk medical apps as well as the business issues associated with entering this space.Called the “MMA Roadshow:  Managing App Development under FDA Regulation,” the four-hour workshops are scheduled over several months across the country, including Jan. 27 at the University of California, San Diego. Full Story