Physical Optics and Electronics Group
Prof. Rajeev Ram


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Professor Rajeev J. Ram


Research Laboratory of Electronics
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
77 Massachusetts Avenue, 36-491
Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139

617.253.4182 - Tel

Rajeev Ram CV | RLE Bio | RLE Video |

Principal Investigator for the Physical Optics and Electronics (POE) Group

Rajeev Ram is Professor of Electrical Engineering at MIT.  His research focuses on the development of novel photonics & electronics for communications, energy, and sensing.

2022 Milestones:

  • Demonstrated sub-wavelength scale LEDs in silicon. These nanoLEDs were used as spatially coherent illumination for miniature digital holographic microscopes.

Key Research Milestones:

  • Developed Swept-Source Raman spectroscopy for low-cost, low-power molecular analysis (2021).
  • Demonstrated early detection of infection (biotic stress) in plants (2021).
  • Demonstrated early detection of nutrient deficiency in plants (2020).
  • Demonstration of integrated circuits at UV wavelengths (2019).
  • Demonstration of photonic integrated circuits deposited on glass; electronic photonic integration on glass trenches embedded in bulk CMOS. Reported in Nature (2018).
  • First single-mode, planar waveguide for ultraviolet light (2017).
  • Demonstrated integrated photonic architecture for trapped-ion based quantum information processing. Reported in Nature Nanotechnology (2016).
  • Demonstrated on-demand, switchable production of full-doses of therapeutic protein using a microbioreactor exercising precise control over synthetic biological networks. Reported in Nature Communications (2016).
  • Demonstrated the first microprocessor with embedded optical networking. This was in collaboration with researchers at UC Berkeley and CU Colorado. Reported in Nature (2015).
  • Demonstrated trapped ion qubits with long-lifetime and long-coherence in a CMOS integrated circuit (2014).
  • On the team that demonstrated <5 fJ/bit resonant Silicon photonic modulator and <20 fJ/bit integrated transmitter (2013).
  • Demonstration of a thermally pumped light-emitting diode – first light-source to achieve greater than 100% electrical-to-optical conversion efficiency (2012)
  • CMOS photonics in a deep-submicron technology (2008).
  • Demonstration of a lab-on-a-chip microbioreactor for scale-down bioprocessing (2006)
  • Measurement of thermoelectric parameters inside p-n junction (2004)
  • Room temperature, continuous-wave lasers on Si using graded SiGe/Si interlayers (2002)
  • Proposed telecom switch based on electromagnetically induced transparency (2000)
  • First room temperature, continuous-wave bipolar cascade laser (1999)
  • Proposed semiconductor polariton laser (1996)
  • Proposed semiconductor laser without population inversion (1994)
  • On the team that produced the first electrically pumped, telecom VCSEL (1993)
  • Developed III-V wafer bonding process (eg. high brightness LEDs) (1992)

Research Training

More than two dozen graduate and post-doctoral researchers have worked with Ram in the Physical Optics and Electronics Laboratory.  These students have gone onto leading semiconductor companies such as IBM, Intel, Samsung and Applied Materials as well as to tenured professorships at Cornell, the University of California, the University of Michigan, ETH Zurich Yale and MIT.

He has received the Ruth and Joel Spira Award and Jamieson Award for teaching.  He is a MacVicar Faculty Fellow – MIT’s highest honor for teaching.

Government Service

Until June 2012, he served as a Program Director at the Advanced Research Projects Agency within the Department of Energy.  He joined ARPAe in its first year.  His primary focus was in advanced electrical components and systems ranging from transportation to the generation and transmission of electric power.  He created three programs at ARPAe: Agile Delivery of Electrical Power Technology (ADEPT), Solar ADEPT (part of the President’s Sunshot Initiative), and Green Electricity Network Integration (GENI).  His portfolio of projects exceeded $100M and included the demonstration of the highest voltage transistor ever-made and supported the breakthrough development of GaN-on-Si power electronics technology.  He worked closely with start-ups (Transphorm, Varentec, Foro Energy, FastCap, APEI), supported cutting-edge research at companies including IR, Cree, GE, GM, Toyota, and consulted with the Office of Science and Technology Policy and the White House.