ARLINGTON, Va.--A senior scientist at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) received the Office of Naval Research's (ONR) Captain Robert Dexter Conrad Award for making outstanding contributions in the field of research and development for the U.S. Navy.
Dr. Thomas Reinecke, senior scientist for nanoelectronics and head of the Quantum Phenomena and Modeling Section of the Electronics Science and Technology Division at NRL, received the award from Chief of Naval Research Rear Adm. David J. Hahn, on May 31 at ONR headquarters.
Reinecke's research at NRL has made significant contributions to not only the U.S. Navy, but the Department of Defense, and this award is just another in a long list of recognitions.
"NRL has given me the opportunity to work at one of the world's leading research institutions on important problems that address critical needs of the Navy, the Department of Defense and the nation," said Reinecke.
Reinecke came to NRL as a research physicist and has made important contributions to the Navy, particularly in the areas of quantum information technology and in thermoelectric and high thermal conductivity materials for cooling and power generation.
Reinecke gave the definitive theoretical descriptions of thermoelectrics and high thermal conductivity materials and has predicted new materials in these areas. This work continues to guide technologies for cooling and power generation on naval ships, and for cooling in advanced microelectronics.
"The Navy has critical needs for quiet, efficient cooling and power generation at sea, and it has been a key supporter of our research on thermoelectrics and on high thermal conductivity materials," said Reinecke. "Through work with ONR, we have advanced new classes of materials to address these needs."
Reinecke also developed theoretical understandings of many of the essential electronic, optical and transport properties of the quantum wells, quantum wires and quantum dots--which have the potential to improve the performance of a range of electronic devices, including high mobility transistors, infrared lasers and biochemical sensors.
"Quantum information technologies offer revolutionary opportunities ranging from very sensitive sensing and ultrafast information processing to secure communications for America's Navy," said Reinecke. "At NRL, we have developed solid-state implementations that lay the foundation for these technologies in systems that are scalable and can be integrated with existing technologies."
To further research in this area, Reinecke brought together research groups from the three service laboratories--the U.S. Army Research Laboratory, NRL and the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory. As a result, a large joint program for the Office of the Secretary of Defense was established to accelerate the development of key quantum information technologies for the Department of Defense, including sensing, networking and communications.
Throughout his career at NRL, Reinecke said he found both his work and the colleagues he collaborated with to be very rewarding.
"NRL has given me the opportunity to work on a broad range of important problems and systems in a collegial and collaborative environment with people who have unusually wide expertise," he said. "It also has been particularly satisfying to work with an outstanding group of talented, young post docs over the years at NRL."