University of Central Florida
Office : 407-309-9494
Consortium for Applied Acoustoelectronic Technology (CAAT)
Director: Dr. Donald C. Malocha
CAAT is a part of the Advanced Material Processing and Analysis Center (AMPAC) at the University of Central Florida
I am currently a postdoctoral research associate in the Electrical Engineering department at the University of Central Florida and the founder of TALAWAH Technologies, Inc. My area of specialization is Radio Frequency (RF) Microelectronic and Solid State Devices. This field is comprehensive in that the coursework allows the flexibility to engage in device physics, design, fabrication, measurement and analysis of RF Microelectronic and Solid State Devices. The title of my dissertation is "Surface Acoustic Wave Device Hydrogen Gas, and Cryogenic Liquid Sensors." I work for the Consortium for Applied and Acoustoelectric Technology under Dr. Donald Malocha. My research is sponsored by NASA Kennedy Space Center (KSC). Thus far, my work on cryogenic liquid sensing, high temperature and hydrogen gas sensing has produced results that meet NASA's needs. Experimentation has resulted in the creation of temperature sensors that can function from -200 to 300 degrees Centigrade. This is important because NASA currently has no sensors which function over a temperature range this wide. These sensors may be implemented as passive (without batteries) and wireless Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tag sensors. Furthermore, these devices are radiation hardened, which in combination with their wide temperature range of operation makes them promising candidates for use in outer space. In the near future, NASA may be testing these sensors in their inflatable habitats in Antarctica. If successful, these sensors will be used on the moon.
My work with SAW-based hydrogen gas sensors has also provided very good insight into the acoustoelectric mechanism of piezoelectric substrates. The methodology used in the development of SAW hydrogen gas sensors is may be applied to other SAW based chemical or biological sensing applications.
Specifically, I used SAW devices to build passive, wireless physical and chemical sensors on the orthogonal frequency coded (OFC) SAW platform. This research allowed me to become a subject expert on the use of piezoelectric SAW devices and facilitated the study of electrical and mechanical properties of thin films. I developed a technique (and modified the theory) to isolate and measure the acoustoelectric and acoustoelastic mechanisms in SAW measurements, designed and built a real-time data acquisition system which included test fixture fabrication, and the integration of various pieces of equipment into a single software package. For the accomplishments, I have presented and published many peer-reviewed articles and of which was awarded the best student paper at IEEE International Frequency Control Symposium in 2011.
Additional Research Interests
My primary interest in becoming an engineer was aimed at designing devices and/or systems that may make a positive impact on the world or at least make it more fun. In keeping with this spirit, I find myself researching biological and chemical sensing applications using SAW device platforms, as well as alternative energy sources such as photovoltaic and thermoelectric power sources and systems. I did some undergraduate work in photovoltaic power systems which was the catalyst behind my pursuit of semiconductor physics as my master’s work, unfortunately, I have not had the opportunity to do any Ph.D work in this area.
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