Aydin Babakhani, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering at Rice University, has been elected to the Microsystems Exploratory Council (MEC) by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Microsystems Technology Office (MTO).
MEC is a study group of academic and industrial scientists and engineers whose research focuses on advanced problems of microsystems technology. Its primary role is to pioneer new research domains rather than provide practical advice on existing DARPA programs or immediate Department of Defense (DoD) needs.
The MEC conducts expansive, forward-looking studies of emerging technologies, and explores the potential of new discoveries to have a significant DoD impact, but are beyond the scope of current or planned programs at DARPA.
The MTO focuses on the microchip-scale integration of electronics, photonics, and microelectromechanical systems. Its goal is to devise protection from biological, chemical and information attack, and to provide operational dominance for mobile distributed command and control, combined manned/unmanned warfare, and dynamic, adaptive military planning and execution.
Babakhani is one of nine members from around the U.S. invited to join the MEC. He earned his Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Caltech in 2008 and joined the Rice faculty in 2011. He is director of the Rice Integrated Systems and Circuits Laboratory and won an NSF CAREER Award in 2016 and a DARPA Young Faculty Award in 2012.