Professor Richard A. Kiehl
Richard A. Kiehl joined the University of California, Davis as professor and chair of Electrical and Computer Engineering in January 2008. He was professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Minnesota from 1999 to 2008 and acting professor of Electrical Engineering at Stanford University from 1996 to 1999. From 1992 to 1995 he was assistant director of the Quantum Electron Device Laboratory at Fujitsu Laboratories Ltd, Japan. Prior to that he was a member of technical staff at the IBM T. J. Watson Research Center (1985-1992), AT&T Bell Laboratories, Murray Hill (1980-1985), and Sandia National Laboratories (1974-1980). He received the Ph. D. degree from the School of Electrical Engineering, Purdue University.
Kiehl explores new device concepts, circuit architectures, and self-assembly techniques for the development of nanometer-scale electronics for information processing, signal processing, and sensing applications. His work draws on extensive experience at corporate research labs in developing high performance electronics exploiting new materials, novel device structures, and unconventional fabrication techniques in GaAs-based and Si-based heterostructures. A major theme in his current research is the exploration of novel concepts at the interface between nanoscale electronics and biological systems.
His work in information processing includes the investigation of nanoscale circuitry based on radically different approaches in which the dynamics of interactions between the tunneling phase or the spin of electrons is used for computation. He investigates device concepts for such novel circuitry based on single-electron effects and spin magnetic moment coupling in nanoparticle arrays and on the nonlinear behavior in arrays of organic molecules.
In addition to using e-beam lithography and scanning probe techniques for the fabrication and characterization of these devices, he explores the use of DNA as a precise and programmable scaffolding for self-assembling nanoparticles, nanowires, molecules and other components into electronic circuitry. This biological approach, which he helped to pioneer, offers device integration at a density and a precision far beyond those possible with lithographic techniques.
Kiehl's research is unusually interdisciplinary in nature. He collaborates with faculty and students in electrical & computer engineering, physics, chemistry, chemical engineering & materials science, and biochemistry - both at UC Davis and other institutions.
Kiehl's research in nanotechnology began with his use of material composition and strain to create linear arrays of nanoparticles within a semiconductor. He continued this research at Stanford University and extended his activities to molecular nanotechnology at the University of Minnesota, where he created MONALISA (Molecular Nanoscience Alliance for Interdisciplinary Studies and Activities) to foster interdepartmental collaborations in this emerging field. He was theme leader for the research team on "Nanoscale Architectures and Information Processing Paradigms" in the SRC/MARCO center on Functional Engineered Nano Architectonics (FENA - Phase I, 2004-2010). He also led a DoD Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (MURI) on "Biologically Assembled Quantum Electronic Arrays" comprising a broad range of activities carried out by nine co-PI’s at six universities exploring biological routes for creating novel quantum electronic systems with potential applications in computing, signal processing and sensing.
Kiehl continues to explore the frontier of using new materials, processes and physics for the creation of electronic devices and circuits with advanced capabilities.