J. Gary Eden Inducted Into Innovation Hall of Fame
Today, The A. James Clark School of Engineering inducted J. Gary Eden (‘72, electrical engineering) into its Innovation Hall of Fame (IHOF) during a virtual ceremony for his legacy of trendsetting work with optics, lasers and micro-plasma devices.
J. Gary Eden received his B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Maryland in 1972. He received an M.S. and a Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering at the University of Illinois, Urbana.
Prof. Eden is a pioneer in the discovery, development, and applications of ultraviolet (UV) lasers and lamps, as well as microplasma-based optical and chemical processing systems. As a research physicist during the late 70s in the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) in Washington, D.C., he discovered several UV and visible lasers, one of which (krypton chloride) is a member of the excimer lasers. Today, this family of lasers is pivotal to instruments and systems devoted to medical procedures and phototherapy such as LASIK and the treatment of psoriasis, respectively, the patterning of micro- and nano-electronic and photonic devices by photolithography, and semiconductor processing. At NRL, he also co-discovered the first lasers driven by proton beams.
Since joining the faculty of the University of Illinois in 1979, Prof. Eden and his students have pursued laser and optical physics, photochemical deposition and materials processing, photophysics in the UV and vacuum ultraviolet (VUV) spectral regions, and the science and technology of microcavity plasmas. They have discovered more than a dozen lasers, including a biomolecular laser (based on a red algae-derived phycobiliprotein) and lasers emitting thousands of microbeams. The latter are being applied to the optical imaging of ultrafast phenomena such as the turbomolecular pump (rotating at 56,000 rpm).
Prof. Eden is a co-founder of three companies devoted to the manufacturing of efficient and flat UV/VUV lamps (Eden Park Illumination), microplasma-based water disinfection systems (Microplasma Ozone Technologies), and VUV/UV photolithographic systems (Cygnus Photonics). Eden Park lamps emitting at 222 nm are being applied to the analysis of materials, such as distinguishing between natural and synthetic diamonds, and to disinfecting surfaces and room air during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Prof. Eden has directed the Ph.D. dissertations of 62 students, and he is a co-author of more than 320 scientific publications. Dr. Eden is also a co-inventor of 95 U.S. and international patents, a Fellow of five professional organizations, and is the recipient of several awards, including the C.E.K. Mees Medal of the Optical Society of America. He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2014, and is currently the Intel Alumni Endowed Chair Emeritus at the University of Illinois. He was honored in 2016 for the Distinguished Alumni Award from the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department.
The Innovation Hall of Fame recognizes Clark School alumni, faculty, and friends who have pioneered many of the most significant engineering advances in the past century. Every year since 1987, the Clark School has added a notable alumna/us to its Innovation Hall of Fame. Past Inductees include Donald Willis, inventor of numerous commercial television receivers; Charles H. Popenoe, inventor of SmartBolts; Robert Briskman, co-founder of Sirius Satellite Radio; George Laurer, inventor of the Universal Product Code; and Brian Hinman, the innovator behind the Polycom SoundStation conference call device.
“The Innovation Hall is essentially a classroom for the world, where students, faculty, friends and visitors can learn about the impact of engineering on the world and the engineers behind that impact,” said Dean Robert Briber. “We’re honored this year to add Dr. Gary Eden to our Innovation Hall of Fame.”
Published November 19, 2020