Umit Özgür

Dr. Umit Özgür
EO/IR Lead

Electrical and Computer Engineering Department

College of Engineering

Umit Özgür, PhD.

Dr. Özgür received his Ph.D. in Physics from Duke University in 2003, and B.S. degrees in Electrical Engineering and Physics from Bogazici University, Istanbul. After working as a postdoctoral research associate from 2003 to 2008 and as an instructor from 2007-2008 he joined VCU as an assistant professor in 2008. He is currently a professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department of VCU. He was awarded the Qimonda Endowed Professorship in 2012, and Engineering Foundation Professorship in 2021, and received Parent’s Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching in 2012 and Faculty Excellence Award for excellence in teaching in 2014. He has authored/co-authored over 180 journal publications including several critical reviews, 120 conference proceedings, 8 book chapters, and one book on growth, fabrication, characterization, and electronic and optoelectronic applications of semiconductor materials and heterostructures. He has served as principal investigator and co-principal investigator for several NSF, DoD, VCU, state and industry funded projects. He is a senior member of IEEE, member of APS, and member of SPIE. He teaches courses on electromagnetic fields and waves, electronic devices, microwave engineering, photonics engineering, nonlinear optical materials and devices, semiconductor optoelectronics, and sensors.

Dr. Özgür’s research interests include novel optoelectronic and electronic devices utilizing wide bandgap semiconductors and group-IV quantum dots as well as biological and chemical sensors based on ZnO thin films and nanostructures. He has made significant contributions to the understanding of ultrafast carrier dynamics in nitride heterostructures, including terahertz generation and control of coherent phonons in semiconductor quantum wells for acousto-optic modulation and nanoscale imaging applications. His contributions in the development of high quality GaN thin films with low dislocation densities and the best known carrier lifetimes laid the foundation for high-efficiency III-nitride light emitters. Investigations of the impact of active region design on carrier dynamics and radiative efficiency resulted in novel InGaN blue light emitting diode (LED) designs with optimized electron injector layers, which were shown to mitigate hot electron effects and improve device efficiency at high injections.

Dr. Özgür’s current research also involves development of micro- and nano-electromechanical systems for non-software logic solver applications and wearable biosensor technologies utilizing semiconductor nanostructures. He also focuses on development of group IV quantum dots (QDs) with tunable optical properties for optoelectronic applications from the visible to IR spectral range. QDs based on Si-Ge-Sn alloys, III-V and II-VI semiconductor systems are explored in conjunction with plasmonic antennas for single-photon emitters.