We specialize in design and optimization of wave systems at the micro and nanoscales. In recent years there has been rapid progress in experimental nanoscience capabilities, but theoretical design has primarily been limited to periodic and metamaterial structures with few degrees of freedom. Our work pushes to open the design space–in photonics, elastodynamics, and more general wave systems–through two approaches:  (1) efficiently exploring high-dimensional spaces via large-scale computational optimization, and (2) developing analytical techniques to model new phenomena and discover fundamental response limits.  Our dual approach of developing new analytical frameworks and fast computational optimization, while emphasizing experimental collaborations, has produced numerous designs and insights, including (a) the world-record-efficiency single-junction solar cell, (b) fundamental limits to response in linear dissipative media, and (c) a generalization of the “blackbody” concept in optics. Looking forward, computation and theory have transformative potential for basic-science discoveries and for technological breakthroughs, especially in emerging energy applications.

See the menu on the left for recent and past work. Some current areas of interest include:

  • Fast, automated computational design in wave physics
  • Fundamental limits to interactions between light and matter
  • Novel structures and new limits for radiative heat transfer applications
  • Design/optimization of super-scattering particles
  • New limits to elastic- and acoustic-wave scattering and absorption
  • Stochastic thermal emission computations, esp. for solar cells
  • Novel imaging approaches via computation