Left to Right: Amy Frees, Andrew Fales, Meizhen Shen, Shwetadwip Chowdhury, Stephen Crain and Stephanie Chiu (Scholar). Not pictured: Ma Luo (Scholar).
Stephanie Chiu (Chambers Scholar) is a second year PhD student in the department of biomedical engineering at Duke University, and was awarded as a 2010-2012 Duke Fitzpatrick Institute for Photonics John T. Chambers Scholar. Her long term research goal is to improve the vision outcomes of patients with ocular diseases through earlier and better directed therapy. The overall objective of her two-year research plan, funded by the Chambers Award, is to address the critical needs in microsurgical intervention by developing a computer-guided optical coherence tomography microscope for intraocular surgery. By integrating this device with novel image processing algorithms, her hope is to develop a surgical imaging system capable of delivering critical and previously indistinguishable information to the surgeon in real time. In doing so, surgeons will no longer be required to use potentially harmful dyes for visualization purposes, and the incidence of surgical mishaps due to inaccurate tissue localization will be minimized.
Shwetadwip Chowdhury is an advisee of Joseph Izatt, Professor in the department of Biomedical Engineering. His project is centered around structural illumination, a super-resolution technique that is particularly well suited for optical imaging systems. His work focuses on its theoretical foundations as well as its clinical applications.
For many optical systems, the classical diffraction limit poses a hard limit to the maximum resolvable spatial resolution. Structured illumination is a technique that allows reconstruction of sample frequencies that are outside the normal passband of the system. To do so, the sample is illuminated with known, high frequency patterns. The interaction between these patterns and the spatial frequencies in the sample result in lower frequency moire fringes. These moire fringes are often within the passband of the optical system and can be directly observed.
Computational reconstruction of the higher frequencies in the sample that are not directly observable by the system is then possible given the observed moire patterns and the known illumination pattern. The reconstructed sample image can have theoretical resolution up to two times the resolution directly from the optical system.
Structural illumination is an add-on technique to advances in hardware components and system design. For our purposes in particular, structural illumination offers an ability to dramatically increase image resolution at a relatively low cost, and can allow visualization of small, but medically significant, structures that were not previously resolvable.
Stephen Crain graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree of Electrical Engineering from the University of Arkansas in the spring of 2010. At Arkansas, Stephen was the President of the Arkansas Alpha chapter of Tau Beta Pi and worked with the engineering recruiting office. His research focus during his undergraduate education was the computer simulation of gold nanostructures for enhanced breast cancer detection using microwave imaging. Stephen joined Dr. Jungsang Kim’s research group on Multifunctional Integrated Systems Technology (MIST) at Duke University in the fall of 2010. He is currently working on integrating a MEMS beam steering system with ion trapping experiments as a part of a scalable quantum computer. The beam steering system will allow the individual addressing of ions in order to perform quantum gate operations. Along with being a Chambers Fellow, Stephen is also a NSF Graduate Research Fellow and a Pratt-Gardner Fellow.
Amy Frees is originally from Huntsville, Alabama. In May 2010, Amy graduated from The University of Alabama with a B.S. in Chemical Engineering. She matriculated at Duke University in August 2010 to pursue a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering and join Dr. Nimmi Ramanujam’s lab group.
Amy is interested in using optical imaging to study cancer physiology. Currently, she is using 2-NBDG, a fluorescent glucose analog, to observe metabolic changes in response to fluctuating tumor oxygenation. Amy is investigating the use of high-resolution imaging to correlate glycolysis and oxygenation status, with the ultimate goal of clinically predicting the behavior of a cancer.
While at the University of Alabama, Amy was named to USA Today’s All-USA College Academic Third Team. She was also awarded first place in a national Society of Women Engineers undergraduate poster competition. Now, when not employed in Duke’s teaching and research facilities, Amy enjoys Blue Devil basketball, church activities, and the Triangle’s local cuisine.
Andrew Fales is originally from Ellicott City, MD. After graduating high school in 2006, he went on to attend the University of Maryland, Baltimore County for his undergraduate education where he studied Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. As an undergraduate research assistant in the lab of Dr. Brian Cullum, Andrew worked on developing a novel fiber-optic chemical imaging probe for use with surface-enhanced Raman scattering. In May 2010, Andrew was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa and graduated summa cum laude with a B.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. He began pursuing a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering at Duke University in August 2010, joining the lab of Dr. Tuan Vo-Dinh. Andrew’s current research involves developing novel plasmonic biosensors for the detection of disease biomarkers.
Ma Luo (Chambers Scholar) is a PhD graduate student in ECE. Luo’s research interests focus on simulation of electromagnetic field and application of the simulation method on designing new optical devices.
One of the recent interests is the semiconductor optical, which incorporate the interaction between electromagnetic field and matter wave of electrons and holes. The electromagnetic field and the matter wave field are simulated by high order finite element method. The developed method is expected to have high accuracy and efficiency, so that it benefits the numerical investigation of the nanophotonic semiconductor device. One of the specific topics that Luo is investigating is the simulation of self-assembling quantum dot. The strong coupling between photon and exciton is interesting because of various applications, such as low threshold laser and high sensitive sensor.
Another research topic is the large scale simulation of optical object. When the size of the simulated object is a few times of or larger than the optical wavelength, the regular simulation method fail to convergent and gives inaccurate result. The solution is to break down the object into some smaller objects, simulate each small object and couple the result from all sub-objects. This method is known as domain decomposition. Ma Luo’s task is to combine this method with the high order finite element method that he has developed before. After this method is implemented, some large scale nanophotonic devices can be simulated efficiently, such as finite size photonic crystal, metamaterial, and nanoscale microcavity.
Meizhen Shi is a first year graduate student from Duke Physics department, in Professor Daniel Gauthier's Quantum Optics group. Her research interest is in Quantum computation and Quantum Information. Shi is taking relevant courses and beginning to learn about quantum teleportation and quantum algorithms. Moreover, Shi hopes to make a contribution to the next generation of quantum computer.
Meizhen Shi is from China and her undergraduate major is microelectronics. During her junior and senior year Shi has done some research on nonlinear optics and has published paper like <Spatial Dispersion Induced by Cross-Phase Modulation> and <Four-wave mixing and six-wave mixing in a four-level confined atomic system>. Therefore in Meizhen Shi’s future research, she wants to do research in the interdisciplinary area of both quantum optics and electronics.