Public Release: 

JQI Fellows Waks and Spielman receive Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers

University of Maryland


IMAGE: Ian Spielman is a JQI Fellow, research scientist at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and an adjunct professor at the University of Maryland. view more

Credit: Joint Quantum Institute

JQI Fellows Edo Waks of the University of Maryland (UMD) and Ian Spielman of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) are among 85 scientists and engineers nationally to receive this year's Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE). The PECASE Award is the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on outstanding scientists and engineers beginning their independent careers.

Edo Waks is an assistant professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at UMD. He will receive PECASE research funds through the National Science Foundation to pursue topics in nanophotonics. By creating artificial atoms known as quantum dots, Waks studies ways to generate and manipulate quantum states of light integrated with semiconductor electronics technology.

Ian Spielman is a research scientist at NIST and is also an adjunct assistant professor in the Physics Department at UMD. He will receive research funds through the Department of Commerce to pursue topics in quantum simulation, using highly controlled, ultracold atoms trapped in crystals of laser light to simulate intractable problems in solid-state physics.

PECASE awardees are selected for their pursuit of innovative research at the frontiers of science and technology and their commitment to community service as demonstrated through scientific leadership, public education, or community outreach. In announcing this year's recipients on Nov. 5, President Obama said "Science and technology have long been at the core of America's economic strength and global leadership. I am confident that these individuals, who have shown such tremendous promise so early in their careers, will go on to make breakthroughs and discoveries that will continue to move our nation forward in the years ahead."


For further information on the awards, see

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