Mark Mirotznik, Professor
Prof. Mark Mirotznik's research is focused on the development of new theoretical, computational and experimental techniques applied to a diverse array of applications in electromagnetics and optics. His current research focuses in three application areas; (1) biomedical instrumentation, (2) engineered electromagnetic materials and (3) computational imaging. In the biomedical field Prof. Mirotznik has had a longtime interest in the development of "smart" catheters that, in a minimally invasive manner, can be used to locate pathological tissue with advanced biosensors and then treat the disorders using catheter ablation techniques. In the field of electromagnetic materials Prof. Mirotznik's group is working on altering the electromagnetic properties of materials by changing their geometry instead of altering their chemistry. This interest is driven by a number of new military concepts which hope to embed all of the radar, communication and other electronic subsystems within the composite skin of military vehicles. To this end, we work on creating new "engineered" materials by machining well-defined subwavelength microstructures onto the surface of currently available materials (e.g. fiberglass based composites) that already posses attractive structural and/or thermal properties. The Office of Naval Research and the Army Research Laboratory have funded this work over the past 8 years. Through their sponsorship we have created a "one stop shop" for rapid prototyping of advanced electromagnetic materials. The facility currently has a number of unique capabilities for design, fabrication and characterization of artificial electromagnetic materials over the entire frequency spectrum of 4-110 GHz. Using these capabilities we have designed and experimentally validated unique electromagnetic absorbers, polarization selective surfaces, novel frequency selective surfaces and antenna isolation platforms. Lastly, Professor Mirotznik's group works in the emerging paradigm of integrated imaging systems. The goal is to create end-to-end optimized imaging systems that maximize the information content of images relative to a set of prescribed imaging tasks. Digital post-processing is an essential ingredient of this approach. The concept is to integrate and optimize the design of the front-end optics, electronic detection and digital post-processing subsystems for efficient information gathering. Our specific approach is to employ an array of imaging channels combined with a set of diverse optical elements and post-processing algorithms to maximize information content. Array imaging, rather akin to the function of compound eyes of insects like flies, is at the leading edge of the ongoing computational-imaging revolution. Multiple optical elements permit the use of a range of information gathering strategies in parallel that can turn what would otherwise be simple yet powerful digital imagers into comprehensive scene interrogators with multiple functionalities, such as high spatial and spectral resolution, high dynamic range, high depth and width of the field of view, excellent target recognition capabilities, and well optimized computational strategies that employ data compression and fusion.