YK Yoon Receives NSF Award for Sustainable Materials Solutions

Yong-Kyu YoonECE Professor Yong-Kyu ‘YK’ Yoon has received a $750k award from the NSF Convergence Accelerator Program in support of his project “Energy-efficient MetaConductors for Convergence of Sustainable Electronics (E-MC2 of Sustainable Electronics).” The project is funded by Track I of the program, Sustainable Materials for Global Challenges. Dr. Yoon’s multi-disciplinary and multi-institutional team will explore energy-efficient metaconductors and develop manufacturing technologies to translate them to commercial use to meet the signal/power integrity requirements for modern high-speed, broadband electronic applications.

What’s a meta conductor? A metaconductor is a nano-engineered superlattice material consisting of magnetic and non-magnetic metals, showing significantly reduced electrical resistance at high frequencies. The material has shown great promise in laboratory environments. As Dr. Yoon says,

“Through the NSF Convergence Accelerator Program, we aim to scale up metaconductor technology to the level of demonstrating manufacturability, with the ultimate goal of commercialization. We expect this technology to help reduce electronic power consumption and aid in efforts to reduce global carbon emissions.”

E-MC2 Sustainable Electronics will generate multiple key areas of intellectual property in the manufacturable metaconductor technology space, establishing the US as the leader in both technology and accelerating technology transfer to launch startups and adoption by industry, thus contributing to the growth of the economy and job creation.

The multi-disciplinary and multi-institutional team will leverage its previous collaborations, new insights from new alliances, and collective experience in engineering education. The outcome of the inclusive educational activities will be a diverse, well-trained, and globally competent workforce in semiconductor manufacturing and related fields. The team’s unique collaboration with an advocacy group will facilitate dissemination of knowledge to the general public in addition to conventional venues such as professional conferences and journal publications.