Moustakas, Altug and Zaman Win Faculty Awards

By Mark Dwortzan

Professor Theodore Moustakas (ECE)
Professor Theodore Moustakas (ECE)

Assistant Professor Hatice Altug (ECE)
Assistant Professor Hatice Altug (ECE)

Assistant Professor Muhammad Zaman (BME)
Assistant Professor Muhammad Zaman (BME)

College of Engineering Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Programs Selim Ünlü announced the recipient of the College’s Distinguished Scholar Award—Professor Theodore Moustakas (ECE)—and the winners of the Early Career Research Excellence Award—Assistant Professors Hatice Altug (ECE) and Muhammad Zaman (BME)—at the ENG faculty meeting on December 20.

Distinguished Scholar Award
The annual Distinguished Scholar Award, formerly called the Distinguished Lecturer Award, honors a faculty member engaged in outstanding, high-impact research, and provides the recipient with a public forum to discuss and showcase research before the Boston University academic community.

Moustakas will present the lecture “Nitride-Based Semiconductor Materials and Devices” in March.

Moustakas studies the growth, fundamental material properties and fabrication of novel electronic and optoelectronic devices. Specializing in the development of nitride semiconductors, he is currently working to create visible and ultraviolet LEDs and lasers for solid-state white lighting, water and air sterilization and identification of biological and chemical agents. He is also investigating indium gallium nitride “quantum dots” that boost solar cell efficiency.

A member of the ENG faculty for more than 20 years and “cornerstone” of the Materials Science & Engineering Division, Ünlü said, Moustakas has had a broad impact on his field, through 25 patents, hundreds of invited talks and journal papers and 7,000 citations in research literature. Recently selected as the 2010 Molecular Beam Epitaxy (MBE) Innovator Award, he has been named a Fellow of the American Physical Society and Electrochemical Society.

Early Career Research Excellence Award
The annual Early Career Research Excellence Award celebrates the significant, recent and high impact research accomplishments of tenure-track faculty less than 10 years removed from their Ph.D.

Since joining the College of Engineering in January 2007, Hatice Altug has earned the National Science Foundation Career Award and “Young Investigator” awards from both the Office of Naval Research  and the IEEE Photonics Society. 

Altug’s research is concerned with confining and manipulating light at the nanoscale to dramatically improve biosensing capabilities. Initiating several advances in the fields of nanophotonics, nanoplasmonics and integrated nanofluidics over the past six years, she has developed state-of-the-art technologies for real-time, label-free and high-throughput detection of very low quantities of biological molecules such as proteins and viruses. Her research could advance biomedical research while spawning new clinical and defense applications.

A member of the ENG faculty for little more than a year, Muhammad Zaman has garnered several major engineering research and education honors, including the Federation of the Societies of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Young Investigator Award, the ENG Innovative Engineering Education Faculty Fellowship and invitations to three prestigious conferences of the National Academy of Engineering, in both Frontiers of Engineering and Frontiers of Engineering Education. Zaman had previously won the highest teaching honor across the entire University of Texas system, the Regents Teaching Award, while serving on the faculty from 2006 to 2009.

Focused at the interface of cell biology, mechanics, systems biology and medicine, Zaman seeks to understand and decouple the integrated chemical, biological and mechanical basis of tumor invasion that precedes metastasis. In addition, his research focuses on the development of robust technologies and innovative solutions to improve the quality and practice of medicine in the developing world. He is currently a member of a technical committee of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa.

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