Rensselaer Researcher Honored with IEEE Ferroelectrics Young Investigator Award

Rensselaer Researcher Honored with IEEE Ferroelectrics Young Investigator Award

By Katie Malatino

August 8, 2023

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute’s Jian Shi, Ph.D., associate professor of materials science and engineering, as well as physics, applied physics, and astronomy, has won the prestigious 2023 IEEE Ferroelectrics Young Investigator Award. The award recognizes “the important contributions of young scientists/engineers in reference to their contributions to fundamental research, integration, application, or education.” Recognizing only one or two exceptional scientists in the relevant field each year, this highly competitive award serves as a prestigious accolade for independent scholars under or at the age of 40.

Shi was honored “for his exciting out-of-box work on ferroelectrics and new way exploration of old materials." His contributions include enriching the basic knowledge of spin-electric polarization relation and phonon-electric polarization relation in polar quantum materials. The research leading to Shi’s award was published in “Nature 607, 480, 2022,” “Nature Photonics 16, 529, 2022,” “Nature Nanotechnology 16, 894, 2021,” “Science Advances, 6, eaay4213, 2020,” and more. His research has been supported mainly by the United States Department of Defense, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Army Research Office, Office of Naval Research, National Science Foundation (NSF), the NSF MIP Platform for the Accelerated Realization, Analysis, and Discovery of Interface Materials, and the State of New York.

Shi’s research interests are polar, spintronic, chiral, and Berry parameters-tunable materials for spin/quantum computing and energy transformation. “My group works on obtaining basic understanding on the roles of photon, carrier momentum, symmetry, and phonon of novel materials on the transport behaviors, spin dynamics and optoelectronic properties, and developing experimental approaches and solutions on searching for new electronic materials and device structures toward energy-efficient, high-performance spin and quantum computing,” Shi said.

Shi earned his doctoral degree in materials science from the University of Wisconsin at Madison in 2012. After his postdoc research at Harvard University, Shi joined Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 2014. He is associate editor of the Journal of Applied Physics. Previously, he won the James M. Tien ’66 Early Career Award, the ASM International Geisler Award, the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute School of Engineering Research Excellence Award, and the Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR) Young Investigator Research Program (YIP) Award.


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