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Charles M. Lieber – Harvard

When reading about nanoelectronics in any journal these days, it's hard not to come across Charles Lieber's name.  Lieber is the principal researcher of the Lieber Research Group, which is based at Harvard University in Boston.  The group's forte is in nanowire-based nanoelectronics.

Since 1984, Lieber has been published over 240 times.  His most important works have been focused on nanowires and their assembly into integrated devices.  Lieber was among the first researchers to create a physical nanowire p-n junction.  He was also a pioneer in linking several such junctions (as transistors) into logic gates. 

At the moment, the Lieber Group's principal focus is to perfect the large-scale hierarchal assembly of nanowire crossings for the next generation of computing devices.  Remember that technique I was talking about in the applications/electronics section?  His group has the machinery to do it.

Aside from computing applications, the Lieber Group has many grad students and postdocs working on other projects.  They include a variety of topics like biosensors, photonics, memory, and a number of other hot items.

I don't know of many research groups that have the kind of equipment, achievements, and vision that the Lieber Group possesses.  If there is going to be a breakthrough anytime soon in nanowire electronics, you can expect Lieber's name to be written all over it. 

Lieber is a chemist at heart.  After receiving a bachelor's degree with honors in Chemistry, he went on to Stanford and Caltech for doctoral and postdoc studies respectively.  He ended up on the east coast in the late 1980's with an assistant professorship at Columbia.  Since 1991, Lieber has been with Harvard and he's now a professor in both the Department of Chemistry and the Division of Engineering and Applied Sciences.  With over 240 publications in peer-reviewed journals, 20 patents, and his own nanotechnology company, Lieber is a shining example of the ideal 21st century scientist.