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Elias Towe

Carnegie Mellon University
Electrical and Computer Engineering
Ph.D., Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1987

Elias Towe received a B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. At this time, he was also a Vinton Hayes Fellow. He then worked simultaneously as a Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Virginia and a Program Manager at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. He is a recipient of several awards and honors. He is currently a professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering at Prior to joining the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, which he joined in 2001.


Towe's group pursues research in basic optical and quantum phenomena in materials for applications in novel photonic devices that enable a new generation of information processing systems for communication, computation, and sensing. The group is also interested in understanding new pathways and fundamental mechanisms for solar energy conversion devices. Current focus is on the use of phenomena (such as three-dimensional quantum-confinement effects in nanometer-scale structures) in the study of novel devices. Examples include: quantum-dot infrared detectors and imaging sensors, electrically-pumped photonic crystal micro-cavity lasers with quantum-dot active regions, multi-spectral solar energy conversion devices, plasmonic bio-sensors, and fluorescence bio-sensing devices.

Most Cited Publications

"Normal-incidence intersubband (In, Ga) As/GaAs quantum dot infrared photodetectors," Pan, Dong, Elias Towe, and Steve Kennerly, Applied Physics Letters 73, no. 14 (1998)
"Tunable band gaps in bilayer transition-metal dichalcogenides," Ramasubramaniam, Ashwin, Doron Naveh, and Elias Towe, Physical Review B 84, no. 20 (2011)
"Tunable band gaps in bilayer graphene− BN heterostructures," Ramasubramaniam, Ashwin, Doron Naveh, and Elias Towe, Nano letters 11, no. 3 (2011)
"Semiconductor quantum-dot nanostructures: Their application in a new class of infrared photodetectors," Towe, Elias, and Dong Pan, IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics 6, no. 3 (2000)
"A five-period normal-incidence (In, Ga) As/GaAs quantum-dot infrared photodetector," Pan, Dong, Elias Towe, and Steve Kennerly, Applied physics letters 75, no. 18 (1999)

Recent Publications

"Pulse Response of an Ultra-compact Grating-based Monolithic Optical Compressor,"  CC Yang and E Towe.  IEEE Photonics Journal (2018)
"A Unified Approach to Achieving High Power and High Energy in Chirally-coupled-core Ytterbium-doped Fiber Amplifier Systems," Bai, Jinxu & Zhang, Jim & Koponen, Joona & Kanskar, Manoj & Towe, Elias, IEEE Photonics Journal 10 (2018)
"Low-threshold voltage ultraviolet light-emitting diodes based on (Al,Ga)N metal–insulator–semiconductor structures," Liang, Yu-Han & Towe, Elias, Applied Physics Express 10 (2017)
"Ultra-compact grating-based monolithic optical pulse compressor for laser amplifier systems," Yang, Chang & Towe, Elias, Journal of the Optical Society of America B. 33 (2016)
"Liquid-Metal-Enabled Synthesis of Aluminum-Containing III-Nitrides by Plasma-Assisted Molecular Beam Epitaxy," Liang, Yu-Han & T. Nuhfer, Noel & Towe, Elias, Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology B. 34 (2016)