Graduate earns top award at international laser science conference

Wei-Che Hsu

Wei-Che Hsu, who recently earned a Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering at Oregon State University, won first place in the Division of Laser Science poster competition.

Hsu presented his research at the Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics, the top conference in photonics co-organized by the IEEE Photonics Society, the Optical Society of America, and the American Physics Society.

Hsu’s research investigates the use of photonic chips, which use photons instead of electrons, for rapid data transmission within computer systems. Advances in photonic chips would help meet the soaring demand for data that is driven by internet services, streaming platforms, cloud computing, and artificial intelligence applications.

Photonic chips offer immense potential, but their current energy requirements have posed challenges.

“My research focuses on developing ultra-energy-efficient photonic chips, showcasing a remarkable reduction in energy needed for temperature control by a factor of more than one million,” Hsu said. “This breakthrough promises significant benefits for data centers, including cost savings, improved sustainability, and enhanced reliability, enabling their continued growth and enhanced performance while consuming less energy.”

Hsu is mentored by Alan Wang, a professor of electrical and computer engineering at Baylor University. Hsu began working with Wang while he was a professor at Oregon State University in 2019.

“Wei-Che Hsu made a remarkable breakthrough in high-speed, energy-efficient photonic modulator driven by transparent conductive oxide, which is crucial to next generation optical communication and computation technology,” Wang said. “His contribution in science and engineering is well recognized by this prestigious award at CLEO.”

Hsu earned a bachelor’s degree in physics from National Taiwan Normal University and a master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering from Oregon State University.

“I chose to come to Oregon State for its strong emphasis on research in engineering,” Hsu said. “Oregon State provided a diverse range of courses and research opportunities and offered the perfect environment to explore my interests.”

Hsu’s research was also part of the National Science Foundation’s Top 5 Research Stories of 2023.

June 24, 2024