Fink succeeds Jeffrey Shapiro, the J. A. Stratton Professor of Electrical Engineering, who has served as director of the Research Laboratory of Electronics (RLE) since 2001. Fink’s appointment is effective Sept. 1.
RLE, founded in 1946, was the first of MIT’s modern interdepartmental academic research centers. Its 84 principal investigators and faculty members represent a vast spectrum of research interests relating to electronics, organized into seven broad themes: atomic physics; circuits, systems, signals and communications; quantum computation and communication; energy, power and electromagnetics; photonic materials devices and systems; nanoscale science and engineering; and multiscale bioengineering and biophysics.
In a letter to the RLE community, Vice President for Research and Associate Provost Claude Canizares cited Fink’s “breadth of experience and deep devotion to RLE and MIT,” which he said will “serve him well in his new role.”
Fink leads the Photonic Fibers and Devices Group in RLE and has also been active in the Institute for Soldier Nanotechnologies and the Center for Material Sciences and Engineering. His research has led to an entirely new class of fiber materials that function as electronic, optical or acoustic devices, produced using low-cost, scalable fiber manufacturing approaches. He is a co-founder of a medical device company, OmniGuide Inc., where he served as CEO during a leave of absence from MIT. He holds 36 U.S. patents and has been recognized with numerous awards, including the National Academy of Science Initiatives in Research Award.
RLE research is supported by government agencies such as the Department of Defense, the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation, as well as industry partners and nonprofit organizations.