Gail Brown ('77, '79)
Gail Brown ('77, '79) was awarded the 2005 Outstanding Alumni award. She is a research scientist at the Air Force Research Lab at Wright-Patterson AFB. Dr. Brown has published over 100 scientific papers and refereed journal articles. Over the years the nature of these papers has changed from defect studies in technologically important semiconductors, such as silicon and gallium arsenide, to optical studies of the quantum based heterostructures for infrared detection. From 1980, with her work on acceptor levels in extrinsic silicon, to 2003 with her research on quantum well and superlattice materials, Dr. Brown has played a pivotal role in characterizing, and developing theories for, the optical properties of infrared semiconductor materials. In particular, her pioneering work in p-type quantum wells and type-II superlattices has resulted in major advances in the field. Numerous papers were published in Physical Review B, the premier physics scientific journal, Applied Physics Letters, for quick reporting of -Y,A4(Bsubstantial advancement of established knowledge or significant novel development in applied physics,A!(B, and the Journal of Applied Physics. These papers have covered first reporting of new optical phenomena, revised or more in-depth theories on the physics of quantum based optical transitions, processing techniques to improve semiconductor performance, and design rules for optimizing band gap engineered materials. These papers have lead to many citations and the information contained in them has often been adopted by others in the field. The many co-authors reflect Gail,F"(Bs leadership in the formation of complete in-house and outside teams used to cover every aspect of the materials research. For instance, these papers cover theoretical modeling of the physics of the materials as well as growth and a variety of characterization techniques to get a complete understanding of the complex relationship between materials issues and optical or electrical properties. Dr. Brown has been the editor on 9 SPIE (International Society for Optical Engineering) Conference Proceedings volumes. These proceedings cover topics on: Technologies for Optical Fiber Communications, Photodetectors: Materials and Devices, Vols. I to VII, and Quantum Sensing: Evolution and Revolution from Past to Present. Two chapters in books on infrared detection were co-authored by Dr. Brown. One was on -Y,F4(BIntroduction to Long-Wavelength Infrared Quantum Detectors,F!(B and the other was titled ,F4(BNormal Incidence Detection of Infrared Radiation in p-type GaAs/AlGaAs Quantum Well Structures,F!(B. The second chapter is recognized as the ,F4(Bhandbook,F!(B for p-type quantum well physics and design. She has also had 4 conference proceedings papers published as chapters. Dr. Brown has been a co-author on over 100 scientific presentations at national and international conferences. Twenty-five of these were invited talks. One presentation on ,F4(BCreating New Semiconductor Materials through Nanoscale Design,F!(B was a rare invited talk at the annual March meeting of the American Physical Society. She has been a speaker at several workshops, such as the Workshop on Frontiers in Electronics and Future Trends in Microelectronics: the Nanomillenium, where attendance is by invitation only and speakers are scientific leaders from around the world, including several Noble Laureates. In addition to the talks at international conferences held in the U.S., she has had talks at international conferences held in nine other countries such as France, Poland, Taiwan, and Portugal. Currently Dr. Brown is requested to give more presentations than time allows. Dr. Brown has sought opportunities for communication and outreach to young scientists, especially women, throughout her career. She has mentored high school and undergraduate students through the High School Apprentice, SOCHE and Co-op programs. One of her High school students, Cindi Dennis, was inspired to pursue a degrees in physics and went on to become a Rhodes Scholar. Dr. Brown has also worked with graduate students at several institutions: two at the Air Force Institute of Technology, two at the University of Dayton, and six at Northwestern University. She served as an advisor and was on the thesis committees of all but the two students at AFIT. It is noteworthy that, due of her reputation in infrared materials, Gail was advising other students on their projects before she completed her PhD. Gail has been an Adjunct Professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department of Northwestern University since 1995. She has also served on numerous other thesis committees for students in the Center for Quantum Devices at Northwestern. She has given 11 invited seminars at universities in the U.S. and Canada. Dr. Brown has also worked to promote her career field and the presence of women in science by doing presentations for school career days. She was the Keynote Speaker for the Women in Science and Engineering Day at Sinclair Community College in 1989, and received a Wright Research Site Educational Outreach Award in 1998. Dr. Brown has also given 50 other technical and programmatic briefings, such as presentations on research results for AFOSR and the bi-annual Scientific Advisory Board reviews. As an AFRL/ML Research Leader, she is responsible for presenting and advocating her research group,F"(Bs program, plans, budget and technical results. She is also responsible for the overall quality of the group,F"(Bs scientific work and the quality and timeliness of its reporting through journal publications and at numerous scientific meetings. She reviews and approves reporting of all technical products associated with her research group, including giving guidance for improvements. The quality of Dr. Brown,F"(Bs presentations has been flawless. She was one of four speakers selected to cover exemplary research topics in the Materials Laboratory when the new building complex was officially dedicated in 1987. Similarly, she was one of four speakers selected for the ML Lecture Series on Advances in Air Force Materials Research in 1996. She is also part of an ML team who can be called upon to brief an overview on the AFRL/ML program on Nanotechnology on short notice. Last year she presented: -Y,F4(BNanoscience and Nanotechnology: Status Opportunities and Challenges,F!(B at the Ohio Aerospace Institute Nanotechnology Forum. Similarly, she presented: ,F4(BMaterials & Manufacturing Directorate Nanotechnology Overview,F!(B at the Joint AFRL/JPL Nanotechnology Workshop in May 2002. Technical Problem Solving: In her own research area, Dr. Brown has been the driving force behind conceiving and evaluating several quantum based heterostructures, such as quantum wells and superlattices, for infrared detection. She has organized teams to study all aspects of these materials that included both industrial and university partners. This incorporation of outside researchers allowed larger teams to be formed and to explore these materials in more depth, including theoretical modeling, a variety of epitaxial growth processes, and multiple characterization techniques of optical and electronic properties. This has allowed rapid advances in the state-of-the-art such that imaging cameras from three of these projects will be fabricated and demonstrated in 2003. One of Dr. Brown,F"(Bs highly successful research areas has involved InAs/InGaAs type-II superlattices as an alternative material for reaching very long wavelength infrared (VLWIR) bands (,Fk(B>15 ,Fl(Bm). One of the critical needs in missile and threat warning from space is a very long wavelength infrared focal plane array with high performance while operating at 40K. This type of focal plane array would extend the detection range and be able to track dim, cold targets against a low photon background. Dr. Brown,F"(Bs research involved exploring the potential and the limitations of the type-II superlattices as an alternative VLWIR material to determine if they merited consideration in future 6.2 R&D contract programs. Her research resulted in significant advancements in the fundamental physics, design parameters, and growth processes for InAs/InGaSb superlattice materials. The success of this research lead to proof-of-concept demonstration that these superlattices are a viable material for addressing AF needs for VLWIR sensors compatible with the same two-stage cryocoolers used for LWIR sensors. Based on this achievement, an AFRL/ML 6.2 program was initiated on these materials with Rockwell Scientific Company in 2002, and MDA started a $4M/year program on type-II superlattices with Dr. Brown as a technical advisor. Dr. Brown,F"(Bs scientific research has been assessed by Peer Review and SAB panels over the years. The reviews of her projects have always brought credit to the Materials & Manufacturing Directorate and the Air Force Research Laboratory. For example, the report by a 1993 Peer review panel contained the following comment on her research: -Y,F4(BThe bandgap engineering work, particularly the p-type QWIP IR detector work seems to be as far advanced as any that is being done and the FT photoconductivity and absorption measurements are state-of the-art,F!(B. The 1997 report by the SAB Electronics Science & Technology Panel described Dr. Brown,F"(Bs project on type-II strained layer superlattice materials as: -Y,F4(Ba classic example of the effective use of the scientific method,F!(B. Dr. Brown is well-known for her exceptional work on infrared detector materials. Her work has been recognized with several scientific awards spanning her career. She received the Charles J. Cleary Award for Outstanding Scientific Achievement, the premier award of the Materials & Manufacturing Directorate, in 1995, and she was a finalist for this award in 1987 and 2002. She received the Air Force Basic Research Award in 2002, and in 1996 she received the Honorable Mention level of this award. She was elected to Fellow in the International Society of Optical Engineering (SPIE) in 2001. As a recognized expert in the field, Dr. Brown has been requested to evaluate programs for AFOSR, AFRL/SN, DARPA, MDA, NSF, NASA, and NIST. For instance, she reviewed NASA proposals for the New Millennium Program,F"(Bs Earth Observing 3 project, and the Advanced Cross Enterprise Technology program in the thrust area of Breakthrough Sensors. Dr. Brown was also part of an AFRL team, lead by Mr. May, to evaluate technology in Singapore in the Fall of 2002. She has co-chaired 9 international conferences for SPIE. Organizing these conferences requires recruiting top speakers from around the world to insure that some of the best in the field will be presenting their latest work. Seven of these conferences were on Photodetectors: Materials and Devices. Gail,F"(Bs goal of creating a new conference that fostered the exchange of ideas across different photodetector disciplines met with a high degree of success. Sessions at the conferences have included near-IR avalanche photodiodes, superconducting microbolometers, uncooled MEMs arrays, a variety of IR detectors, and UV photodetectors, to name just a few. The Photodetectors conference grew from 25 papers the first year to over 50 in the last year. This conference also accomplished Gail,F"(Bs second goal to bring more visibility to AFRL,F"(Bs leadership in this field. Several fruitful collaborations with other scientists have resulted from these conferences. For the 2003 Photonics West, she and her co-chair reinvented their conference to match SPIE,F"(Bs new emphasis in nanotechnology. The conference on Quantum Sensing: Evolution and Revolution from Past to Present spanned 4 days and had 62 talks. This conference will be repeated in 2004. Based on her success with conference organization, Gail was recruited to be a symposium chair overseeing a group of four conferences on semiconductor lasers and photodetectors, a task she excelled at for 7 years until she requested to be replaced. She also served on the SPIE International Symposia Committee from 2000 to 2002. Dr. Brown has been the Research Leader of a team of over 20 scientists and engineers since 1998. Since that time the research group has changed significantly by incorporating teams in two other buildings into the group and reorganizing the technical effort to match these newly combined talents to the Sensor Materials Branch program. She is responsible for creating the yearly research plan for the Quantum Semiconductor Materials research group covering 9 separate projects and ensuring that accomplishments are achieved. These projects cover research areas on superlattices, quantum wells, quantum dots, terahertz transistors, semiconductor lasers, carbon nanotube arrays and wafer bonding. Gail has demonstrated a tremendous capacity to not only plan and monitor this wide variety of complex topics but also to envision what new areas should be initiated to meet future AF needs. Gail keeps in-touch with members of her group on a weekly and sometimes daily basis. She provides advice on papers, presentations and technical issues in the research projects. Despite several reorganizations, reduction in personnel, and a >30% reduction in budget, Dr. Brown has managed to keep the in-house research performance at a high level. She continues to find creative ways to build ties to external research partners to augment the group and to leverage the available resources. In every case, the projects have ties to academia, industry and usually another AFRL Technical Directorate, especially AFRL/SN. Dr. Brown is also the task leader on an AFOSR basic research task on Electronic and Optical Materials. While this is a long-standing core task, it is continuously transformed as basic research is transitioned and new areas are added to meet some the AF,F"(Bs long-term challenges. These changes to the task content are jointly planned with the AFOSR Program Manager. Under her leadership, her research group was selected as an AFOSR Star Team in 2003. Gail maintains a frequent discourse with program managers in the AFOSR Physics and Electronics Directorate, EOARD and AOARD. Corporate Resource Management: Dr. Brown is a member of the Sensor Materials Branch leadership team that participates in strategic planning for the Branch. She is one of 18 senior Research Leaders in the Materials & Manufacturing Directorate. She manages all aspects of the AFRL/ML in-house research program on Quantum Semiconductor Materials, from personnel involved to meeting equipment needs. This research group currently involves 24 scientists & engineers working on 9 projects and is supported with a combined 6.1 & 6.2 funding level of $1.1M. She is an AFOSR task manager on a major basic research task in the Physics & Electronics Directorate funded at a level of $600K/year. She is a member of the AFRL/ML Research Council that is charged with high-level research planning across the Directorate. She is also a member of the AFRL/ML Nanotechnology IPT which plans the resource management and program path for nano-science & technology in the Materials & Manufacturing Directorate. She participates in the AFRL Nanoscience & Technology working group. In these challenging times of limited resources, Dr. Brown has taken advantage of several mechanisms to augment the research group,F"(Bs manpower. One mechanism was to participate in an AFOSR sponsored Integrated Supersensor MURI project with the University of California at San Diego. While AFRL/MLPS cannot be directly funded by the MURI, Post Docs and students funded by UCSD come to AFRL/MLPS to work on relevant tasks. One UCSD Post Doc is currently working with Dr. Brown,F"(Bs group on developing an uncooled infrared sensor array for incorporation on the supersensor chip. A graduate student from UCSD will join the group this summer. Another mechanism to bring in people and open up a new research area was the opportunity to work with Dr. Chien Wai, University of Idaho, on a Congressionally funded project. Dr. Wai will spend the summer at AFRL/MLPS and set up a facility for supercritical fluid deposition. A Post Doc and graduate student from the University of Idaho will also work in AFRL/MLPS to explore the AF applications for this novel deposition process capable of filling pores as small as 7 nm. Gail has often initiated new research opportunities with <$100K of entrepreneurial funding. For instance, the p-type quantum well infrared detector project was initiated with $50K of Laboratory Discretionary funding (LDF) in 1991. The optical up-conversion process of teaming p-type quantum well infrared photodetectors with light emitting diodes for a pixelless array was started through another $50K LDF project with Dr. H.C. Liu at the Institute for Microstructural Sciences of NRC Canada in 1995. A third $75K LDF project in 2000 allowed the foray into infrared properties of ordered carbon nanotube arrays with Dr. J. Xu at Brown University. Often once these projects are started the participants continue to work together long after the funding is gone. Usually this is through mutually beneficial sharing of resources such as material growth or characterization. The strong reputation of Dr. Brown,F"(Bs research group attracts some of the best scientists in the field to request to work jointly with her team. Dr. Brown is not only a world-class researcher, she is also a prime example of the -Y,F4(Bsmart buyer,F!(B of AF programs concept. Dr. Brown was a program manager on 12 AFRL/ML and SBIR contract programs involving infrared detector materials, from extrinsic silicon to type-II superlattices. She has initiated SBIR topics and been the topic lead for both AF and MDA SBIR topics. This year alone she was the topic lead on ,F4(BSuperlattice Materials for Very Long Wavelength Infrared Detectors,F!(B and ,F4(BMultiple Purpose Photodiode Array,F!(B for MDA, and helped to write an AF FY04 topic on ,F4(BNanoparticle Synthesis of III-V Compounds for Optical Sensing,F!(B. The Phase I and Phase II SBIR contracts that have resulted from topics authored by Dr. Brown have been a vital component of the infrared materials contract program. There are so few 6.2 contract dollars for starting new programs that the SBIR program is the only venue for regularly starting new programs. For instance, there are two Ph I and two Ph II programs currently managed in AFRL/MLPS from superlattice based SBIR topics. Despite the limited 6.2 dollars, Gail,F"(Bs efforts secured support for starting a 6.2 contract program in 2002 on superlattice materials for IR detection based on the significance of the 6.1 research results and high potential payoff for the Air Force. Dr. Brown is a technical advisor to the MDA program on type-II superlattices for VLWIR focal plane arrays and was instrumental in getting this $4M/year program started. She was recently able to convince MDA to add ~$300K/year funding to the AFRL/ML contract with Rockwell Scientific, she manages, to accelerate the effort on this superlattice program.