Misra receives 2016 RJ Reynolds Award

Dr. Veena Misra, Distinguished Professor of Electrical Engineering at North Carolina State University and director of the National Science Foundation ASSIST Center, is the thirty-second recipient of the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company Award for Excellence in Teaching, Research and Extension. Misra delivered an award lecture Tuesday, Nov. 15, at the Larry K. Monteith Engineering Research Center on NC State’s Centennial Campus. Her lecture was entitled, “Smart Materials and Smart Devices for a Smarter World.”

The award was established in 1981 within the College of Engineering to honor a member of the engineering faculty who has demonstrated superiority in several areas of activity that relate to the University’s three-fold mission of teaching, research and extension. The annual award is supported by the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company through the NC State Engineering Foundation to recognize scientific and educational achievements in fields of engineering. The recipient is given a $25,000 prize distributed over five years.

Misra is known internationally for her research in the field of semiconductor devices. She is recognized for contributions in the areas of complementary metal–oxide–semiconductor (CMOS) transistors, wide bandgap semiconductor devices and sensors for health and environmental monitoring, which have provided significant insights in the field.

Her work and publications in the exploration of metal electrodes and high-K dielectrics have led to her becoming the technical leader for the gate electrode Supertask. Misra’s significant knowledge and contributions have addressed challenges of NMOS and PMOS electrodes and she has published some of the earliest papers that demonstrated fundamental insight into metal gates and dielectric interactions.

As the lead inventor on a reverse flow, self-aligned, gate-metal-last technology, Misra pioneered the concept and patent that are at the heart of the gate-last approach being used in the semiconductor industry today. As director of the ASSIST Center, she has built a center with compelling vision and composed a highly accomplished team spread out over six universities that provides significant state-of-the-art contributions in self powered wearable platforms.

She has been invited to speak at more than 60 conferences and presentations, published 188 refereed journal and conference papers, has written four book chapters, and holds 15 patents. She also has an H-index of 35 and i10-index of 95 from Google Scholar.

Misra joined the NC State faculty in 1998 as an assistant professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, was named a distinguished professor in the department in 2016 and in 2012 was named director of the ASSIST Center.

During her time at NC State, she has been actively involved in engaging students and developing courses covering various aspects of her research. She has graduated 26 Ph.D. students whom are all well placed in furthering their careers, 22 in industry and four in academia. She has engaged several undergraduate students into her research program whom have gone on to pursue Ph.D. degrees. While several of these have continued on at NC State, other undergraduates have gone onto places such as Stanford University and University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Her many honors and awards include the IBM Faculty Award in 2015, election as an IEEE Fellow for contributions to high-K dielectrics and metal gates in 2012, the Alcoa Foundation Distinguished Research Award in 2011, NC State University Alumni Research Award in 2007, Best Paper Award by IEEE-Nano in 2005 and NSF Presidential Early CAREER Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) in 2001.

Through the ASSIST program, graduate, undergraduate and K-12 students are being exposed to center research through a new skills program, graduate certificate program, REUs, senior design projects and summer programs for middle school, high school and teachers during summers. She has successfully obtained funding for an RET site to further expand this program as the PI. She has published two papers in ASEE on ASSIST’s educational efforts. Under her leadership as director, ASSIST was successfully renewed for another three years in 2015 resulting in a total of eight years of funding with another opportunity to get two more years in Year Six.

She received bachelor’s (1991), master’s (1992) and Ph.D. (1995) degrees in electrical engineering from NC State University.

Misra has been a leader at the forefront of metal electrodes and high-K dielectrics for CMOS applications while making a significant impact in promoting excellence in her teaching, research, and interaction with other universities and the scientific community worldwide.

Her commitment to excellence makes her a deserving recipient of the R.J. Reynolds Award.