Geisel, Thayer, and Tuck Name Professors to Endowed Chairs

Dartmouth News

December 4, 2018

By Charlotte Albright

The faculty are recognized for stellar research, teaching, and service.

Four leading faculty members from Dartmouth’s professional schools have been named to endowed professorships. The honors, for multi-year terms, recognize scholarship, teaching, and service at the Geisel School of Medicine, Thayer School of Engineering, and the Tuck School of Business.

Eric Fossum

Eric Fossum

John H. Krehbiel Sr. Professor for Emerging Technologies, Thayer School of Engineering

It is wonderful to be named the next John H. Krehbiel Sr. Professor for Emerging Technologies. As a semiconductor device physicist and electrical engineer, I have been working on image sensor “chips” and image capture for my entire career, which includes working in academia, NASA, industry and entrepreneurial startups. The complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) image sensor technology we invented in the 1990s for interplanetary spacecraft is now found in nearly every camera on Earth, including billions of smartphones. My group at Dartmouth has been looking at a possible next-generation image sensor technology, one that counts photons one at a time. This “quanta image sensor” has now been demonstrated with a million tiny pixels, thanks to the inventive contributions of my graduate students and our collaborative work with industry to put it into practice. We have created a new startup company, Gigajot, to explore commercialization of this new platform technology. At Thayer, we will continue to push the boundaries of sensing light and exploring new applications.

To me, the joy of engineering is creating and inventing new technologies and then translating those technologies from the lab to benefit society. Technology transfer via entrepreneurship is one of the most effective ways of making this happen, and helps keep higher education’s compact with our nation and the world. Nothing beats seeing your invention in the hands of happy users.

Brian Pogue

Brian Pogue

MacLean Professor of Engineering, Thayer School of Engineering

The Engineering in Medicine initiative at Thayer has been the ideal umbrella program for growth in biomedical optics applications. Our research group includes about three dozen faculty, staff, and students within the Center for Imaging Medicine at Dartmouth. We work with research-focused physicians and translational biomedical researchers at the Geisel School of Medicine and the Norris Cotton Cancer Center. Thayer owns facilities in the medical center, enabling us to translate NIH-funded discoveries of imaging systems into human clinical trials, an opportunity that exists at few peer institutions.

My own focus is on developing imaging tools that take advantage of the unique molecular sensitivity and point-of-care features of optical spectroscopy. These advances in surgical guidance and radiation therapy guidance cannot be done with traditional radiological tools. In surgical imaging, the sub-microscopic structure of tissue can be uniquely sensed with active illumination methods. In another project, which is being tested in three ongoing surgical guidance trials, we developed a molecular tracer for a cancer cell surface receptor to guide surgical resection. Finally, we developed a unique imaging camera that captures radiation doses in tissue of  patients. This last tool is a fundamentally new way to visualize radiotherapy in action, and has spawned a startup company, DoseOptics, which licenses the Dartmouth patents for this technology. In this way, students get both engineering and entrepreneurial experience.

I am pleased to continue this work as the MacLean Professor of Engineering. Endowments such as this bridge generations of alumni and faculty, not unlike the bridges that we try to build across faculty and students in the medical and engineering schools.

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