The People

Principle Investigator (PI) - Collaborative Investigators (CIs) - Research Associates (RAs)

Principle Investigator (PI):

Professor Harry Coles, FInstP
CMMPE, Department of Engineering

Harry Coles is Professor of Photonics of Molecular Materials in the Engineering Department of Cambridge University, and Director of the multidisciplinary Cambridge Centre of Molecular Materials for Photonics and Electronics (CMMPE). He obtained his BSc (hons) in Physics at the University of London in 1971. He was awarded his PhD by Brunel University in 1975 and a DSc by the Victoria University of Manchester in 1987, where he was appointed as a lecturer in 1980. He was promoted to Professor of Applied Physics in 1991. He then took up the post of Professor of Physics and Director of the Southampton Liquid Crystal Institute (SLCI) at the University of Southampton in 1995 until 2002. He has built up a research group with research interests in the Synthesis and Characterization of Liquid Crystals, Oligomers and Polymers, Structure-Property Correlation, Spectroscopic and Electro-optic Techniques, Linear and Non-linear Optics of Liquid Crystals, Thin Film Optical Devices, Lasing Liquid Crystals and Displays, and he was awarded the George Gray Medal of the British Liquid Crystal Society (BLCS) in recognition of this work in 2003. He has gained over £5M as sole investigator and a further £2M as lead investigator in EPSRC and industrial grants. He was PI and director of the COMIT Faraday Partnership.


Co-Investigators (CIs):

Professor Sir Richard Friend, FRS FREng
Optoelectronics Group, Cavendish Laboratory

Richard Friend is the Cavendish Professor of Physics. He has built up a research group with a broad range of interests and application of the techniques of solid-state physics to molecular and polymeric materials. His research has been recognised by many awards including the 1996 Hewlett-Packard Prize of the European Physical Society, the 1998 Rumford Medal and the 2006 Clifford Patterson Lecture of the Royal Society, the first gold medal awarded by the E-MRS at their 20th anniversary in Strasbourg in 2003, and the Silver Medal and McRobert Prize of the Royal Academy of Engineering. The international standing of “organic semiconductors” in the UK was the only area found to be “excellent” in the recent international review of materials science and technology research in UK universities (Enabling the Future; A Perspective on UK Materials Research) by the EPSRC and the Institute of Materials. The research programme on organic electronics in Cambridge has contributed significantly to this. This group has a strong record of technology transfer, with a large portfolio of generic patents covering applications of polymers in light-emitting diodes (used to set up Cambridge Display Technology), photovoltaic diodes, and field-effect transistors (used to set up Plastic Logic).

Professor Ian White, FREng
Centre for Photonic Systems, Department of Engineering

Prof. Ian White is currently van Eck Professor of Engineering, Chair of the Council, School of Technology and Head of the Photonic Research Group in the Engineering Department at the University of Cambridge. He gained his B.A. & Ph.D. degrees from the University of Cambridge, England, in 1980 & 1984. He then was appointed a research fellow and assistant lecturer at the University of Cambridge before moving to become Professor of Physics at the University of Bath in 1990. In 1996 he moved to the University of Bristol, becoming Head of the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering in 1998, before returning to the University of Cambridge in October 2001 Ian White has built up a substantial research activity in the field of optoelectronics and optical communications which now involves approximately 45 people. He publication output includes approximately 550 papers and 38 patents. Highlights of Ian's research have included the invention of the offset launch technique for enhancing the bandwidth of optical fibre links, this having been adopted within Gigabit Ethernet standard, and a technique for polarization pinning of VCSELs. This has since been employed in laser optical mice. He has chaired the channel model sub-task force of the IEEE 10 GbE LRM standard. The Institution of Electrical Engineers has awarded him the Blumlein-Browne-Willans Prize and the Ambrose Fleming Premium Award. Ian is currently an editor-in-chief of Electronics Letters and is also a co-founder of ZinWave.


Professor Wilhelm Huck
Melville Laboratory, Department of Chemistry

Wilhelm Huck received his MSc in Chemistry (cum laude) from Leiden University (1992), and did his PhD (1997) at Twente University, working with Prof. Reinhoudt on self-assembled metallodendrimers. Post-doctoral work in soft-lithography, microfluidics, and mesoscale self-assembly was carried out with Prof. Whitesides at Harvard, where he received experience in the fabrication of microfluidic devices in PDMS. He has worked extensively with both pressure-driven and electro-osmotic flow driven devices, and looked at effects of surface modification inside devices. He took up a position as ICI Lecturer at Cambridge University in 1999, and was promoted to Reader in 2003. His research interests include soft nanotechnology, alternative routes for nanolithography and polymer brushes, as well as their applications in optoelectronic and biomedical devices. For his work on polymer brushes he was awarded the Young Researchers Medal 2001 of the RSC Macro Group UK. In 2004 he received a DuPont Young Professor Award to further research in nanolithography and the effects of nanoconfinement on polymers.


Professor Eugene Terentjev
Biological and Soft Sytems, Cavendish Laboratory

Eugene Terentjev is a Professor of Polymer Physics at the Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge and fellow of Queens’ College. After studying and receiving his PhD (1985) in Moscow, and working in the Institute of Crystallography, Russian Academy of Sciences, he became a research associate at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio (1990-92). He has been in Cambridge since 1992, progressing from a research associate to an EPSRC Advanced Fellow, to the faculty member. His research group includes theory and experimental studies and mainly focuses on structure and dynamical properties of soft matter: polymers, liquid crystals, composites and colloids – with the increasing interest in self-assembly and function of biological materials. Prof. Terentjev is an editor of the Springer series Advances in Polymer Physics and several collections, and an author of the monograph Liquid Crystal Elastomers.


Dr. Timothy Wilkinson
CMMPE, Department of Engineering

Tim Wilkinson is a Reader in Photonic Engineering in the Engineering Department, University of Cambridge and a former Sir Henry Jones British Gas Research Fellow. He has research interests in liquid crystal devices and their applications such as optical correlators for pattern recognition, computer generated phase holograms, optical telecommunications and displays. He is responsible for running the class 1000/100 clean room and fabricates almost all of their liquid crystal devices. His most relevant expertise to the present Basic Technology proposal lies in all aspects of liquid crystal device fabrication, alignment and processing which will be crucial to laser fabrication. In recent years he has been actively involved in the fabrication and application of LCoS devices for optical telecommunications as well as looking into new electro-optical devices technologies such as carbon nano-tubes.