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Electrical and Computer Engineering

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Building with flowers  200 Union Street SE,
  4-174 Keller Hall
  Minneapolis, MN 55455-0170
  Phone: 612-625-3300

Welcome from Department Head Randall Victora
The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering is committed
to educating the
 future work force and to conducting research with
collaborators from industry and government.


Fall 2015 Signals Newsletter


Electrical and Computer Engineering is hiring

The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering invites applications for multiple faculty positions in 4 areas: power and energy systems; communications and signal processing; RF/microwave/terahertz circuits and systems; embedded systems as part of the MnDRIVE Intiative.


Black Phosphorus: A Promising Candidate for Future Electronic and Photonic Devices

"Atomic and Electronic Structure of Exfoliated Black Phosphorus," a journal article co-authored by Prof. Steven Koester and Prof. Tony Low (along with other researchers from ECE and CEMS) has been featured on the cover of the Journal of Vacuum Science and Technology A. Black phosphorus, a layered two-dimensional crystal with tunable electronic properties and high hole mobility, is quickly emerging as a promising candidate for future electronic and photonic devices.


Prof. Mehmet Akcakaya Receives NIH R00 Award

Prof. Mehmet Akcakaya received the NIH R00 award in September. This is part two of the two-part Pathway to Independence award (K99/R00), with the second part being awarded at the start of a tenure-track or equivalent faculty position. It is one of the most competitive NIH early career awards, and is designed to support outstanding researchers transition from mentored research positions to tenure-track positions.

Prof. Jarvis Haupt Wins Russell J. Penrose Teaching Award

The inaugural Russell J. Penrose Excellence in Teaching Award has been confered on Prof. Jarvis Haupt. The award recognizes his genuine interest and excellent performance in teaching undergraduate and graduate students, and is based on strong student and peer evaluations, and quality of course materials. Congratulations and thank you for your dedication to teaching.


Minnesota Nano Center Awarded $4.5 Million by National Science Foundation

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has announced the formation of the National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure (NNCI) network and the University of Minnesota is pleased to announce that the Minnesota Nano Center has been selected to be one of the nodes in NNCI receiving an award of 4.5 M$ over five years. This follows an eleven year period of participation in the NSF National Nano Infrastructure Network over which the school was awarded 8 M$. The NNCI is designed to enable major discoveries, innovations, and contributions to education and commerce by providing researchers from academia, small and large companies, and government, with open access to university user facilities with leading-edge fabrication and characterization tools, instrumentation, and expertise within all disciplines of nanoscale science, engineering, and technology.

In addition to providing users access to a full range of fabrication equipment in Keller Hall and the new Physics and Nano building, as a new NNCI node the Minnesota Nano Center will support activities in two-dimensional materials, bionano, and, through participation by North Dakota State University, advanced packaging. Participation in the network will enable the University of Minnesota to further strengthen its capabilities in this vital area. The effort will be led by Prof. Stephen Campbell, who holds the Bordeau Chair in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and is the director of the Minnesota Nano Center.


Yulong Li Wins Prestigious Interdisciplinary Doctoral Fellowship for 2015-2016

Vernon D. Albertson

Yulong has been awarded the highly competitive interdisciplinary fellowship by the University of Minnesota for his work on the creation of an ultra-small radiation dosimeter for cancer therapy using fully-depleted silicon-on-insulator (FDSOI) technology. Because of its structure, conventional dosimeter uses the same element for radiation sensing (write) and data extraction (read), which makes it difficult to achieve both high scalability and sensitivity. FDSOI uses different elements and has the advantage of separating “read” and “write” as a dosimeter, thereby achieving high scalability and sensitivity simultaneously. The FDSOI dosimeter will be suitable for superficial dosimetry and can also be implanted directly into the patient. It will employ passive wireless sensing which could improve the application of in vivo radiation dose verification and ultimately benefit patient treatment outcomes. Yulong is working under the guidance of Prof. Steven Koester.


TMRC 2015 Hosted by ECE

TMRC 2015


Using Curvature of Cellular Networks to Identify Cancer Cells

Vernon D. AlbertsonProf. Tryphon Georgiou in a paper led and co-authored by Prof. Allen Tannenbaum and other researchers and faculty from Stony Brook University and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, demonstrates that a certain geometric feature of protein networks can be used to identify cancer cells. The paper published in the Nature research journal Scientific Reports, addresses a key challenge in cancer therapy, to explain and quantify the apparent robustness of cancer cells. Advances on this front may significantly impact targeted treatment of cancer cell networks. The paper titled "Graph Curvature for Differentiating Cancer Networks" reveals the role of curvature as a cancer network characteristic, and its relationship to robustness as a functionality of the network. While the paper is focused on cancer cells, it points to the use of the analytical approach to the study of complex cellular networks to understand phenomena in molecular biology.

Cell robustness with respect to pairwise interactions

Cell robustness with respect to pairwise interactions (figure 1 in paper)

For access to the full paper, please click on the title of this news item.



In Memoriam: Professor Emeritus Vernon D. Albertson Passes Away

Vernon D. AlbertsonVernon D. Albertson, Professor Emeritus, University of Minnesota, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, passed away on June 6, 2015. He served as a faculty member in the department from 1963-1997.

Professor Albertson received his Bachelor of Science degree from North Dakota State University in 1950, his Master of Science degree from the University of Minnesota in 1956, and his doctorate from the University of Wisconsin, Madison in 1962, all in electrical engineering. He worked at the General Electric Co. in Schenectady, NY from 1950-1952, and as a Communications Officer in the United States Air Force from 1952-1954.

In 1981, Professor Albertson set up the University of Minnesota Center for Electric Energy within the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering with the primary mission to support undergraduate education and graduate research in electric power and energy. He was also responsible for establishing a lasting connection between the University of Minnesota and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in 1981.

Professor Albertson did pioneering and seminal research in the area of protecting power systems from the effects of geomagnetic storms. In collaboration with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), he had magnetometers installed in northern Minnesota for measuring these currents. Professor Albertson and his students, based on their research, were instrumental in advising about the impact of stray currents in dairy farms. He was very active in IEEE, organizing annual meetings and seminars. He started MIPSYCON (Minnesota Power Systems Conference) fifty years ago, which has now turned into the premier conference in the upper Midwest, attracting attendees from all over the country and Canada.

Professor Albertson’s contributions to the field of electrical energy and power systems, his friendship, and generosity will be missed.


ECE Welcomes Professor Randall Victora as the New Department Head

 Randall Victora

We welcome Professor Randall Victora as the new head of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. He will be taking over from Professor David Lilja on July 1, 2015.  Professor Victora has an outstanding record in teaching, research, and service, and the department looks forward to working under his leadership and guidance.


ECE Welcomes Two New Faculty Members For 2015-2016:

Sarah Swisher

Meisam smaller 

Sarah Swisher joins ECE as an Assistant Professor. She is completing her Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of California at Berkeley.  She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln.  Prior to her Ph.D. studies, Sarah worked on GPS systems for several years at Garmin International. 

Sarah's expertise is in materials for biocompatible and bioresorbable electronics.  As an example, she and her collaborators designed and built a flexible electronic device that can provide early detection of pressure sores in patients.


Mehmet Akcakaya

Meisam smaller 

Dr. Mehmet Akcakaya joins ECE as an Assistant Professor. He received his graduate degrees from Harvard University and his undergraduate degree from McGill University (Montreal).  He has worked as a postdoctoral research associate, and currently as an Instructor in Medicine, at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center at Harvard Medical School.  

Mehmet's expertise is in biomedical imaging with a particular emphasis in magnetic resonance imaging.  He expects to work closely with the researchers at the University's Center for Magnetic Resonance Research (CMRR). 


ECE Faculty Receive Three NSF Early Career Development Awards

Meisam smaller  Dhople Cho
Congratulations to (pictured left to right) Professors Arya Mazumdar, Sairaj Dhople, and Jeong-Hyun Cho for being awarded the Faculty Early Career Development Award from the National Science Foundation. NSF grants this select award to junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of the University of Minnesota.


Jarvis Haupt Receives Young Faculty Award From Darpa

Meisam smaller  Congratulations to Professor Jarvis Haupt for being awarded the highly competitive Young Faculty Award from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) providing rising research stars in junior faculty positions with funding, mentoring, and industry and DoD contacts to develope their research ideas.


Winner announced for 2014 Fall Senior Design Show
First Place: 3dB Metamaterials Transmission Line Coupler"

Team 9 3dB Metamaterials


  ECE Project "3dB Metamaterials Transmission Line Coupler,
  above (l to r) Advisor Prof. Anand Gopinath, Jason Lahr, Zenawi
  Abadi, Mohamed Haji, Phat Phan, Tam Luong. 
  Teams that achieved Honorable Mention (below)
  "Nimbelink Dry Good Inventory Sensor Using LIDAR" by Jake 
   Lutz, Anastasio Silguero,  Brice Ngnigha, Luke Everson, and 
   (not present) Cody Qiao. (not pictured) Advisor Ramesh Harjani.

  "Self-Excited Induction Generator" by (standing) Daniel Larson,
   Tianchen Yuan, Pierre Chaput, Tyle Eckwright. (kneeling)
   Xiaonan Duan and Stephen Carnicom.
   (not pictured) Advisor Prof. Paul Imbertson.

 Nimbeline Dry Good Team 

Self-Excited Induction Generator

Alumnus Meisam Razaviyan ('14) receives IEEE
2014 SPS Young Author Best Paper Award

Meisam smaller Alumnus Meisam Razaviyan (‘14) was selected for the 2014 SPS Young Author Best Paper Award for his “On the Degrees of Freedom Achievable Through Interference Alignment in a MIMO Interference Channel. Co-authors were Gennady Lyubeznik and ECE Prof. Zhi-Quan Luo (who also was Meisam’s advisor.


Prof. Nikos Sidiropoulos appointed ADC Chair

Nikos Sidiropoulos 2013  Prof. Nikos Sidiropoulos has been
  appointed to a five-year term as ADC
  Chair of Digital Technology based on
  his records of academic excellence and
  his contributions to the Digital Technology


 Ph.D. student Md Al Mehedi wins DOW SISCA
Challenge Award for creating more sustainable magnets

M Al Mehedi WEB



  Ph.D. student Md Al Mehedi, advised by
  Prof. Jian-Ping Wang, received the top prize
  —a $10,000 award—in the Dow Sustainability
  Innovation Student Challenge held on Dec. 4
  for his new process of making magnets out
  of iron and nitrogen eliminating the need to
  use rare earth elements typically used in
  standard magnets for applications such
  as motors and generators. The winning 
  project was one of 12 submitted to the Dow
  SISCA challenge at the University of
  Minnesota, one of 17 colleges around the
  world participating in the competition.

DTC and ECE Research Assoc. Prof. Kostas Slavakis
receives IEEE Signal Processing magazine Best Paper

Kostas Slavakis









  Research Assoc. Professor Kostas Slavakis,  with
  Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
  and the Digital Technology Center,  received the
  2014 IEEE Signal Processing magazine Best Paper
  Award for "S. Theodoridis, K. Slavakis, and
  I. Yamada, "Adaptive learning in a world of projections:
  A unifying framework for linear and nonlinear
  classification and regression tasks," IEEE Signal
  Processing Magazine, vol. 28, no. 1, pp. 97-123,
  Jan. 2011."

  The Signal Processing Magazine Best Paper Award
  honors the author(s) of a paper of exceptional merit
  and broad interest on a subject related to the Signal
  Processing Society’s technical scope and appearing
  in the Society’s magazine. The award includes a
  prize and a certificate that will be presented to Kostas
  and his co-authors at the Society’s Awards Ceremony
  during ICASSP 2015 in Brisbane, Australia.


Prof. Jian-Ping Wang has been elevated to IEEE Fellow
and appointed to U of MN Centennial Chair

Larger Web 2012 JP Wang






  Prof. Jian-Ping Wang has been
  elevated to IEEE Fellow for his
  contributions to magnetic
  material and spintronic devices
  for magnetic recording, information
  processing and biomedical

  In addition, Prof. Wang has been
  appointed to the Centennial Chair
  in Electrical and Computer
  Engineering by College of Science
  and Engineering Dean Steve Crouch
  upon recommendation by the faculty

  The Centennial Chair was estab-
  lished to expand "... the educational
  capacity and enhance the academic
  quality and prestige in the [ECE
  department] with emphasis on
  technologies pertaining to computer
  design and development including
  subsidiary areas ..."


University of Minnesota engineers make sound loud enough
to bend light on a computer chip

Mo Li Web Larger

Mo_Li research - 120











  “Our breakthrough is to integrate 
  optical circuits in the same layer
  of material with acoustic devices
  in order to attain extreme strong
  interaction between light and
  sound waves,” said Mo Li,
  assistant professor in the Depart-
  ment of Electrical and Computer
  Engineering and the lead
  researcher of the study.

  The researchers used the state-
  of-the-art nanofabrication tech-
  nology to make arrays of elec-
  trode with a width of only 100
  nanometers (.00001 centimeters)
  to excite sound waves at an
  unprecedented high frequency
  that is higher than 10 GHz, the
  frequency used for satellite

  “What’s remarkable is that at this
   high frequency, the wavelength
   of the sound is even shorter than
   the wavelength of light. This is
   achieved for the first time on a
   chip,” said Semere Tadesse, a
   graduate student in the University
   of Minnesota’s School of Physics
   and Astronomy and the first author
   of the paper. “In this unprecedented
   regime, sound can interact with
   light most efficiently to achieve
   high-speed  modulation.”

  To read more, click here.



ECE Team KPZZ finishes 6th in American
Epilepsy Society Seizure Prediction Challenge

Keshab Parhi 2013

 Zisheng Shang

  Prof. Keshab Parhi ( top left) and Ph.D.
  candidate Zisheng Zhang (bottom left)
  ranked 6th out of 506 entries in the
  International Seizure Prediction Challenge
  hosted by Kaggle. Sponsored by the American
  Epilepsy Society, the contest was organized by
  UPenn and the Mayo Clinic.

  To review final standings, click here.
  For details of the competition, click here.



Prof. Beth Stadler named IEEE Magnetics
Society Distinguished Lecturer

Beth Stadler 2013



  Prof. Beth Stadler has been named a 2015
  IEEE Magnetics Society Distinguished Lecturer.
  Four international speakers, chosen annually,
  are awarded travel funds for up to 40 talks
  worldwide, with at least one tour each in
  Europe, Asia, and the US. Speakers are chosen
  on the basis of international reputation for
  excellence in their respective fields, speaking
  acumen, and the widespread interest within the
  greater magnetics community of their proposed
  lecture topics.  Stadler’s talk is entitled, “Magnetic
  Nanowires:  Revolutionizing Hard Drives,
  Random Access Memory (RAM), and Cancer
  Treatment.”   For more details on the program
  and her talk, click here.


Dr. Vasileios Kekatos receives honorable mention
in 2014 Post-Doctoral Series

Vasileios Kekatos  Dr. Vasileios Kekatos received a Postdoctoral Career Development Honorable Mention in the U of MN 2014 Post-Doctoral Association Award Services Series. (Prof. Randall Victora, advisor)


Ph.D student Lucas Taylor receives DEPS
Graduate Scholarship

Lucas Taylor  ECE Ph.D. student Lucas Taylor received the
  2014-2015 Directed Energy Professional
  Society Graduate Scholarship. He was one
  of eight students nationwide to receive a
  $10,000 award for studies in high energy
  lasers and high power microwaves.
  (Prof. Joseph Talghader, advisor)


Ph.D. student Kartik Iyer receives Best Session
Presentation Award

Kartik Iyer  ECE Ph.D. student Kartik Iyer received the IEEE
  IECON 2014 Best Session Presentation Award
  at the Conference in Dallas, Tex. His paper is
  titled “Multi-level Converter to Interface Low
  Voltage DC to 3-Phase High Voltage Grid with
  Medium Frequency Transformer Isolation.”
  (Prof. Ned Mohan, advisor)


Prof. Wang and the Gold Gopher Magnetic Biosensing Team
Selected one of five Distinguished Award Prize winners

 Wang and Klein Nokia Sesing Challenge

A team from the University of Minnesota led by Prof. Jian-Ping Wang
has been selected as one of five Distinguished Award Prize winners,
valued at $120,000, in the Nokia Sensing XCHALLENGE, a global
competition to develop breakthrough medical sensing technologies
that will ultimately enable faster diagnoses and easier personal
health monitoring.

The Golden Gopher Magnetic Biosensing Team has developed a
handheld device, named “z-Lab,” designed to detect various ailments
using disease indicators, or “biomarkers,” found in bodily fluids at
the earliest stages of the disease, often when symptoms are not
even present. A  drop of fluid is placed on a small biochip
(~10 millimeters by 10 millimeters) and results of up to 10 health
indicators are displayed within 15 minutes on a smartphone,
tablet or other mobile device. The sensor can also be used for
monitoring other factors that can impact one’s health, such as
the mercury concentration in water.

“The high sensitivity of this device allows it to detect various ailments
—including infections, heart disease and even cancer—faster, easier
and earlier than ever before,” said Golden Gopher Magnetic
Biosensing Team Leader Jian-Ping Wang, an electrical and
computer engineering professor at the University of Minnesota’s
College of Science and Engineering. “We see this as a prevention
-based device that will ultimately save lives.”

The Team includes professors and students from the University
of Minnesota, doctors from the Mayo Clinic and engineers from
several corporate partners, including Zepto Life Technology a
University startup company who is commercializing this technology. 

Details refer to

Media Coverage Links:
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Ph.D. candidate Huan Li is featured in Nature Nanotechnology


  Ph.D. Candidate Huan Li is
  featured in Nature Nanotech-
  nology, the premier journal
  on nanotechnology.
  (Prof. Mo Li, advisor)
  To read more, click here.


News Archives

CSE SHOP: Now Offering 3-D Printing
The CSE Shop designs, fabricates, welds, and repairs prototypes
and scientific research equipment. The shop also provides 3D printing
services, Customers can visit the shop or send drawings for estimates

THE CSE SHOP has two locations: Tate Lab, Physics Room 30 and
Mechanical Engineering , Room 2-134.

More information about the CSE Shop equipment, 3D printer, hourly rates,
and exmaples of shop work cab be found at the CSE SHOP Web Site

University of Minnesota CSE Machine Shop, Physics
116 Church Street SE, Room 30,
Minneapolis, MN 55455.
Jon Kilgore - Managing Research Engineer - kilgo001 at - (612) 624-4328
Ron Bystrom -Shop Foreman - email bystrom002 at, - (612) 624-7048
Fax (612) 624-4578

University of Minnesota CSE Shop, ME
111Church St SE, Room 2-134 ME
Minneapolis, MN 55455
Mike Jensen - Managing Research Engineer - mjjensen at - (612)-625-2062
Bob Jones - Shop Foreman- jones018 at - (612) 625-0549




ECE is hiring

2015 Fall ECE Colloquium Schedule

2015 Spring ECE Colloquium Schedule 

Past Colloquium presenters  

Information and Resources

Signals - Fall Issue 2015

  • Keller Hall Hours:
    Main doors 
         7:00 a.m. - 6:00 pm  Mon. – Fri.
         8:00 a.m. - 6:00 pm  Saturday
         9:00 a.m. - 6:00 pm  Sunday
    Union and Church St. entrance
         7:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. Mon. – Fri.;
         Closed weekends
    Administrative office
         8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Mon. – Fri.
         Closed weekends
    Annex entrance
         7:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. Mon. – Fri.
         Closed weekends