Daniel Lopez


The Pennsylvania State University

Daniel Lopez is the Liang Professor of Electrical Engineering at Penn State University and the Director of the Nanofabrication Lab at the Materials Research Institute. He received his Ph.D. in Physics in 1995 from the Centro Atomico Bariloche in Argentina. Immediately after, he joined IBM T. J. Watson Research Center as a Postdoctoral Fellow, and in 1998, Bell Laboratories (Murray Hill, NJ) as a Research Staff member. At Bell Laboratories, he worked in developing, fabricating, and applying micro and nano electro-mechanical systems (MEMS and NEMS) for optical communications, imaging, and ultra-sensitive force detectors. In 2008, he moved to Argonne National Laboratory to lead the Nanofabrication and Devices group at the Center for Nanoscale Materials. In 2020, after spending a year at NIST (Gaithersburg) working on quantum packaging for atomic sensors, Dr. Lopez joined Penn State University as a named Professor of EE and Director of their Nanofabrication Lab. During the year 2022, he assembled the Mid-Atlantic Semiconductor Hub (MASH), a consortium of 10 universities across six states that combines resources to meet the need of the semiconductor industry in the U.S. by strengthening and aligning research, manufacturing, and workforce development. He is affiliated with the Microsystems and Nanotechnology Division in the Physical Measurement Lab at the National Institute for Standards and Technologies (NIST) in Gaithersburg, MD.

His research career covered many areas, such as novel materials, micromechanics, optical microsystems, and nanofabrication, but a common theme has been using the interplay among mechanics, photonics, and materials to advance fundamental and applied science. Some examples of his research include the fabrication of today's fastest and densest spatial light modulators, the development of methods to improve the performance of oscillators using nonlinear resonators, the most precise characterization of the quantum mechanical Casimir interaction, and the development of optical nanosystems incorporating metasurfaces and MEMS devices. He has authored more than 160 technical publications, holds 32 granted patents, and has given invited talks worldwide. He collaborates with the industrial sector and with researchers and educators globally.