PhD student involved in academics, research and service

College of Engineering

Department of Electrical Engineering doctoral student Ridwan Hossain is definitely one graduate who has left his mark on the College of Engineering. Throughout his time here, he has worked tirelessly in his academics, conducted cutting-edge research in the Nanoscale Materials and Devices Laboratory (NMDL) and served as a mentor for engaging STEM students in the North Texas region through K-12 outreach.

Hossain’s research focuses on developing techniques to additively manufacture a wide variety of sensing devices using new and emerging materials. These materials are ink-jet printed on bendable, lightweight substrates for flexible electronics, offering a sustainable and low-cost alternative to silicon-based electronics. His work on these substrates was recently published in ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces journal.

Other impactful research Hossain conducted over the course of his doctoral dissertation led to a publication in Nature npj 2D Materials and Applications journal, where he was first author on a study involving 2D semiconducting materials to make optical sensors that are biocompatible for implantable electronics to address age related macular degeneration. Hossain’s PhD publication portfolio includes four peer-reviewed journal publications, six journal publications currently in review, and five conference proceedings articles.

“I love doing research and working in a new field developing new technologies.  The passion for discovery and being the first one to demonstrate a new device concept kept me very focused and driven, and sometimes I would just go for days and nights,” said Hossain. “At the end when I see the result and getting our work published in well recognized journals, it gives me happiness, and all of these challenges I went through helped motivate me to do more good research.”

Hossain transferred here from the University of Texas at El Paso when his mentor, now Professor and Director of the PACCAR Technology Institute Anupama Kaul, accepted a position in 2017 at UNT, a Carnegie Tier One research institution.

“The research facilities here at UNT are great, and I’m fortunate to be provided an opportunity to conduct important research in using exciting materials for sensors and flexible electronics, which has a lot of possibility for innovations to impact future technologies.  When I look back, I really enjoyed presenting my research findings at important international meetings including the IEEE, MRS, and SPIE and interacting with experts. I feel like the training and guidance I received under the supervision of Prof. Kaul has prepared me well to be an independent researcher, and I want to express my gratitude to her for her advice, support and mentorship.”

Along with his research here at UNT, Hossain also worked with another student to develop lab-modules for a new course Kaul created at UNT on micro-electro-mechanical systems. He has also served as a peer-mentor to undergraduate and graduate students and helped organize interdisciplinary summer camps and field trips for high school and middle school students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

All of these activities were what led Hossain to receive the outstanding student award from both the College of Engineering and the Department of Electrical Engineering. It’s an honor that recognizes a graduating student who has demonstrated excellence in academics, research and professional service.

“The people are very friendly here at UNT, and I got a lot of support from the faculty, staff and department, and without that, I couldn’t have been as productive,” he said. “I’m especially thankful to the electrical engineering department, to my committee, and to Dr. Fu, the chair of the electrical engineering department. They were all so welcoming and helpful and really helped set a great foundation for me and my career. The EE department seems to be well-engaged with industry, and living in Denton has been a great experience for me, given its small town feel and close proximity to the DFW metroplex.”    

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