DARPA looks to young researchers for game-changing ideas

Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)Dr. John Ohab is a new technology strategist at the Department of Defense Public Web Program.

Stress resilience, optical control of nanoelectronic devices, and personalized monitoring of the real-time social web are just a few of the research areas that the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) plans to fund through its Young Faculty Award program.

According to a press release, DARPA selected 33 up-and-coming researchers at 24 U.S. universities to spark game-changing ideas and generate excitement for the unique challenges the Defense Department encounters today and tomorrow. Awardees receive grants of approximately $300,000 to develop and validate their research ideas over a period of two years.

The Young Faculty Award program is part of DARPA’s mission to maintain technological superiority of the U.S. military and prevent technological surprise from harming national security.

Below, you’ll find the list of awardees arranged by research topic area. You can also view and download the list in glorious pdf.

Quantum Science and Technology

Andrew Houck, Princeton University
Scanned Probe Cavity Quantum Electrodynamics

Brian D’Usro, University of Pittsburgh
Quantum Interactions of a Graphene Nanomechanical Oscillator with a Single Spin

Chuanwei Zhang, Washington State University at Pullman
Induced Topological Order and Quantum Computation in Fermionic Cold Atom Superfluids

Martin Zwierlein, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Strongly Interacting Fermi Gases in Lower Dimensions

Applied Biology, Biomedical Devices and Bioinformatics

Thomas Knotts, Brigham Young University
Predicting Protein Behavior on Surfaces for Improved Design of Protein Arrays

Emily Gibson, University of Colorado, Denver
Integration of Microfluidic Devices with Nonlinear Spectroscopy for Flow Cytometry and Bioagent Detection

Howard Salis, Pennsylvania State University
Rational Design of Nucleic Acid Drugs to Control Metabolism and Kill Pathogens


Andrew Blumberg, University of Texas at Austin
Applied algebraic topology: Categorical foundations, topological statistics, and practical implementations

Jason Morton, Pennsylvania State University
Kernel Counting

Structural Materials

Youping Chen, University of Florida
Predicting Materials Properties from their Microstructural Architecture

Yashashree Kulkarni, University of Houston
Computational Modeling of Grain Stability in Nanostructured Materials

Functional Materials

Aaron Lindenberg, Stanford University
All-optical control of nanoelectronic devices

Gregory Engel, University of Chicago
Coherent Energy Transfer in Novel Excitonic Materials for High Speed Large Area Sensors and Efficient On-Pixel Data Processing

Artem Oganov, Stony Brook University
Novel computational methodologies for nananoscale design of functional materials

Power and Energy

Yu Huang, University of California, Los Angeles
Design of Broad Spectrum Solar Energy Harvesting Antenna for Organic Photovoltaics

Yongsheng Chen, Pennsylvania State University
Catalyst Deactivation in Steam Reforming of Liquid Hydrocarbons to Produce Hydrogen for Fuel Cell Power Generation

Krishna Mandal, University of South Carolina
Quantum Cutting Core-Shell Nanocrystals for Enhanced Solar Cell Efficiency

Advanced Electronics

Mona Jarrahi, University of Michigan
Plasmonics-Enabled Ultra-Short Carrier Lifetime Photoconductors for High Power Terahertz Generation

Alyosha Molnar, Cornell University
Bio-inspired optical image compression in CMOS

N. Peter Armitage, Johns Hopkins University
Invention, Development, and Application of a Time domain THz Ellipsometer


Xiaojing (John) Zhang, University of Texas at Austin
Patterned Plasmonic Surfaces on MEMS

Dana Weinstein, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Mutli-GHz Acoustic Resonance in Transistors

Chuan-Hua Chen, Duke University
A Planar Thermal Diode

Kripa Varanasi, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Nanoengineered Surfaces for Ultra High Heat Flux Thermal Management

Photonics and Lasers

Lin Zhu, Clemson University
On-chip coherent combining of angled-grating-confined broad-area semiconductor lasers

Ramesh Raskar, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Looking Around Corners using Transient Imaging

Ozdal Boyraz, University of California, Irvine
Mid-IR Photonic Integrated Circuits

Pei-Cheng Ku, University of Michigan
Nitride Semiconductor Single-Photon Emitters and Photon Entanglement

Manufacturing Science and Technology

Manuel Gamero-Castano, University of California, Irvine
Nanodroplet Beam Sputtering for Very Fast Milling and Micromachining of Inert Materials


John Johnson, Kent State University
Targeting Stress Resilience Without Detriment to Adaptive Stress Response

William Tyler, Arizona State University
The Development of Pulsed Ultrasound for Noninvasive Neural Interfaces

Computational and Quantitative Social, Decision, and Behavioral Sciences

James Caverlee, Texas Engineering Experiment Station / Texas A&M University System
Personalized Monitoring of the Real-Time Social Web

Abel Rodriguez, University of California, Santa Cruz
Dynamic Social Modeling: Estimation

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2 Responses to DARPA looks to young researchers for game-changing ideas

  1. Marasoiu Marian Puiu says:

    Heloo! I don't like to spy wat I look on my internet wat subject intresting or ather problems.I hope to anderstand all agency who have this ingrate misions. Sincerly, ilogiczz

  2. Raymond says:

    How does one go about applying for the Young Projects Agency?