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Published: 21 June 2017

Highest IET scholarship goes to Surrey/NPL PhD student

Grigorios (Greg) Rigas, who is conducting research into printing techniques for advanced manufacturing of next generation electronic devices, has won the IET Postgraduate Scholarship for an Outstanding Researcher – the highest scholarship to be awarded by the Institution.

Grigorias Rigas

Greg is a PhD student based jointly at Surrey’s ATI (Advanced Technology Institute) and the National Physical Laboratory (NPL), the UK’s National Measurement Institute.

The Scholarship, which is worth £10,000, is awarded by the IET (Institution of Engineering and Technology) to a doctoral researcher conducting outstanding work at a university with an international reputation for research. Greg will receive the prestigious award at the IET Achievement Awards ceremony on 15 November.

The IET Postgraduate Scholarship recognises Greg’s exceptional research in the field of printed nanoelectronics for next generation devices. In collaboration with NPL, Greg has developed what is thought to be the world’s smallest ink-jet printed nanowire transistor (an electric switch) which is less than the width of a human hair. This capability opens the door to applications such as miniature cancer detectors, hazardous gas sensors and nano-photovoltaic energy harvesters.

Greg has also demonstrated a novel method of spray-painting semiconducting crystals directly on to a surface, potentially offering a lower cost, more flexible method than silicon-based semiconductors. The results of this project – which was a collaboration between Surrey, NPL, the University of Southampton and University of Kentucky – were published in Nature Communications in November 2016.

Greg said: “I feel excited and deeply honoured to have won the IET Postgraduate Scholarship. Receiving such a prestigious award from from one of the largest multidisciplinary engineering institutions in the world is a high honour, which has given me confidence in my chosen research path and the promise it holds for improving the quality of our everyday life.”

Dr Maxim Shkunov, Greg’s PhD supervisor at the ATI commented: “We are very excited to see IET recognition of the incredibly hard work done by Greg, and our research at Surrey. The award will certainly inspire more engineering students to tackle challenges in a new branch of electronics, harnessing solution processed nanomaterials, circuits and devices.”

Dr Fernando Castro, Greg’s PhD supervisor at NPL, commented: “Winning such a prestigious prize is a great honour and acknowledgment of the high-quality and challenging work done by Greg at both NPL and Surrey. It will certainly inspire the next generation of engineers working at the forefront of measurement science applied to advanced manufacturing of electronic materials and devices.”

Dr Richard Burguete, Director of the Postgraduate Institute for Measurement Science at NPL, added: “This is a fantastic achievement and well-deserved recognition of the outstanding nature of Greg’s work. Greg is an exemplary member of the Postgraduate Institute to which he has contributed extensively by showcasing his high-impact research, and I hope this award inspires others to embark on similar cutting-edge postgraduate research.”

The IET Postgraduate Scholarship for an Outstanding Researcher is the highest of a number of postgraduate scholarships awarded annually by the IET to celebrate excellence and innovation in the engineering sector, and encourage the next generation of engineers.

Why not explore our programmes in Electrical and Electronic Engineering, including our BEng and MEng Electronic Engineering with Nanotechnology degree programmes and our MSc in Nanotechnology and Renewable Energy.

 

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