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New ECEE faculty member aims to develop new, more robust applications for terahertz technology


Georgios Trichopoulos

Georgios Trichopoulos joined the Fulton Schools in late 2015 as an assistant professor of electrical engineering.

His research focuses on the development of hardware that can more accurately and efficiently detect millimeter wave (mmW) and terahertz (THz) frequencies, something of the last frontier of the electromagnetic spectrum. These frequencies represent a gap in between the long-wavelength microwaves emitted by electronics and the very short-wavelength radiation of photonics.

“We’ve never had economically affordable technology to detect these frequencies until recently,” said Trichopoulos. “The question now is how can we use these frequencies? How best can we apply them?”

While mmW and THz already see use in a range of technologies, including pharmaceuticals, medical imaging, non-destructive electronic evaluation, telecommunications and security, most notably airport body scanners, Trichopoulos wants to explore their untapped potential.

Namely, Trichopoulos wants to apply mmW and THz to biometrics. While many mobile devices use RF or capacitive sensors for fingerprinting, Trichopoulos wants to leverage the mmW and THz to measure more than just a fingerprint to enhance security.

“Right now, THz lacks a ‘killer’ app,” said Trichopoulos. “While I’m here at ASU, I not only want to achieve my research aspirations, but see the results of my research in the real world. I want my work to become translated into products that can have a broad impact.”

Trichopoulos added that he’s determined to be an effective educator, as well as serving as a good mentor to Ph.D. students.

“I want to provide the support for my students so they can go on to great things,” he said. “Develop their own big ideas, start their own companies.”

Coming from a family of engineers, Trichopoulos was always interested in math and science, a curiosity his uncle, a mechanical engineer, cultivated from an early age. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Democritus University of Thrace in Greece, and his masters in biomedical engineering from the National Technical Institute of Athens.

Trichopoulos completed his Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering from Ohio State University in 2013, where he worked in the ElectroScience Lab.

By Pete Zrioka

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Fulton Schools

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