News Release: SUNY Poly Professor of Nanoscale Engineering Dr. Ji Ung Lee Awarded $6.25 Million by Naval Research Laboratory for Advanced Electronic Devices and AI-Specific Hardware Development

News Release: SUNY Poly Professor of Nanoscale Engineering Dr. Ji Ung Lee Awarded $6.25 Million by Naval Research Laboratory for Advanced Electronic Devices and AI-Specific Hardware Development

Wednesday, August 21, 2019 - 10:35
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Dr. Ji Ung Lee

View a video featuring Dr. Ji Ung Lee as he discusses this exciting research and the opportunities it will mean for SUNY Poly students and post-doctoral researchers:

For Release:           Immediate – August 21, 2019
Contact:                  Steve Ference, Director of University Communications | (518) 956-7319 |

Grant Represents SUNY Poly’s Largest Single Investigator-Faculty Award To-Date 

Supports Hands-on Nanoscale Engineering Educational
Opportunities for SUNY Poly Students and Post-Doctoral Researchers

ALBANY, NY – SUNY Polytechnic Institute (SUNY Poly) announced today that Professor of Nanoscale Engineering Dr. Ji Ung Lee has been awarded $6.25 million in federal funding from the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) to leverage the state-of-the-art 300mm fabrication facility located at SUNY Poly’s Albany campus and use new nanoscale materials to fabricate advanced electronic devices in order to impart more functionalities to future computer chips. During the course of this five-year grant, Dr. Lee’s team will also develop artificial intelligence (AI)-specific hardware, which could lead to greater efficiency for AI applications, such as pattern and voice recognition. Notably, this grant represents SUNY Poly’s largest single investigator-faculty award to-date.

“On behalf of SUNY Poly, I am proud to congratulate Dr. Lee for being selected to receive this award for this critical research, which could lead to exciting advancements for a variety of both military and public applications that depend on efficient and highly capable electronic hardware,” said SUNY Poly Interim President Dr. Grace Wang. “Dr. Lee’s accomplishment is the latest testament to the incredible talent of our faculty who are advancing key areas of research, such as AI, through the use of our world-class facilities and resources, thereby underpinning U.S. technological prowess while simultaneously providing exciting, immersive student research opportunities.”

As part of this NRL award, a number of SUNY Poly graduate students and post-doctoral researchers will be able to take part in the characterization of the materials and devices to be fabricated inside the 300mm cleanrooms. Additionally, the researchers plan to work closely with an on-site engineering team in order to be able to fabricate these novel devices. The devices will incorporate reconfigurable logic capabilities and 3D monolithic integration technologies to help continue to advance Moore’s law. In addition, Professor Lee will develop special electronics for the Navy.

“I am proud and grateful to receive this significant funding from the NRL for work that is a culmination of ten years of impactful, collaborative research,” said Dr. Lee. “With our world-class fabrication capabilities, and together with our experienced SUNY Poly team, including dedicated engineers and students, we are fortunate to be leading the way in the development of cutting-edge devices to address NRL and Department of Defense needs. Supporting this effort, I am also thrilled to provide students with a truly unique experience where they will be able to learn first-hand the skills required to advance technologies in this growing and important field.”

The research, entitled, “SOI Wafer Development and Post CMOS Devices for NRL/DOD requirements,” will include the examination of the fundamental properties of materials, leading to the development of novel nanoscale electronic devices to achieve the team’s engineering objectives. Along with the partnering engineering team, Dr. Lee’s group plans to fabricate advanced AI-specific hardware to achieve more efficient chips for pattern and image recognition, allowing these applications to be run on handheld devices, in addition to carrying out advanced nanoscale electronic device development in Dr. Lee’s laboratory to support the fabrication efforts.


About SUNY Polytechnic Institute (SUNY Poly)
SUNY Poly is New York’s globally recognized, high-tech educational ecosystem. SUNY Poly offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in the emerging disciplines of nanoscience and nanoengineering, as well as cutting-edge nanobioscience programs at its Albany campus, and undergraduate and graduate degrees in technology, including engineering, cybersecurity, computer science, and the engineering technologies; professional studies, including business, communication, and nursing; and arts and sciences, including natural sciences, mathematics, humanities, and social sciences at its Utica campus; thriving athletic, recreational, and cultural programs, events, and activities complement the campus experience. As the world’s most advanced, university-driven research enterprise, SUNY Poly boasts billions of dollars in high-tech investments and hundreds of corporate partners since its inception. For information visit