Guide to Graduate Study in Area IV: Engineering Physics
What is Area IV “Engineering Physics” about? Is Area IV about engineering or is it about physics? The simple answer is that Area IV has both, and a multitude of both in numerous multidisciplinary fields, including chemistry, materials science, mathematics, physics, electrical engineering, biology and bioelectrical engineering, and in mechanical engineering too! Area IV Engineering Physics uses the foundation and underlying principles of physics to enable the engineering of complex integrated systems. For a few examples, the systems under investigation span electronics, optoelectronics, photonics, lasers, plasma fusion, quantum communication and computation, microelectromechanical and microfluidic structures.
To help you navigate Area IV in EECS, the faculty and staff have identified nine topics that are broadly covered in the many research activities underway. The highlighted topics are electromagnetics, photonics, power, energy, materials, devices, microsystems, nanotechnology, and physics of information. For each topic, we have compiled a sampling of the research that is carried out, along with a listing of undergraduate and graduate subjects that may cover some aspect of the particular topic. In addition, many different seminars are offered each week with a particular theme that aligns well with a topic or topics. And finally, a number of central laboratories, as well as individually-supervised laboratories, are also available to conduct the multitude of Area IV research activities.
Within EECS and affiliated with Area IV, approximately 50 faculty and staff supervise research projects. The scientific and technical expertise of the faculty and staff is very broad, and their respective laboratories enable a vast array of experiments to be conducted. For your convenience, with the listing of Area IV faculty and staff, their respective alignment with an Area IV topic is also provided. You will quickly notice, however, than many topics are easily included within a single research group or research endeavor; seldom will a single research project be contained in a unique topic, but rather will span multiple research topics. The multidisciplinary nature of Area IV is very exciting and is viewed as an important enabling asset when researchers strive for an Area IV research goal or objective. In summary, Area IV contains a wealth of physics and engineering, embodied in nine topics. No boundaries exist between Area IV topics. Moreover, there also are no boundaries with the other four Areas (Area I, II, III, VII) in EECS; there is considerable overlap and many additional valuable and rewarding connections.
The amount of information regarding Area IV is overwhelming. The many, many research activities throughout Area IV are very exciting. A person, who is new to EECS at MIT, may appreciate a guide to Area IV “Engineering Physics”; I am happy to discuss Area IV and welcome your contact.
Jeffrey H. Lang , Area IV chair
Check out the fantastic RA opportunities available in Area IV in (1) Nanophotonics for Solar Cell Applications, (2) Power Systems and Impact on National Energy Grid, (3) Quantum Imaging, (4) Intermodal Qubit Conversion, (5) Hybrid NEMS/CMOS Devices for Wireless Communications, and (6) RF reliability of GaN High Electron Mobility Transistors. See the Announcements page on this website for further information.