Materials science and engineering
Hometown: Kumasi, Ashanti, Ghana
Graduation date: Spring 2022
Additional details: Transfer student
FURI | Fall 2021
Exploring the Extreme Structural Parameters of Hyperbolic Metamaterials
Hyperbolic metamaterials (HMMs) are nano-engineered metal-dielectric composites that feature extraordinary wave-vector dispersion and spontaneous emission engineering. These properties count strongly on the structural parameters such as unit cell size and the quality of the interface. Conventional HMMs are produced via top-down technologies (e.g., e-beam lithography, focused ion beam), which have inevitably suffered from the limitations of unit size, interfacial roughness, and materials scalability. This project addresses these challenges by exploring extreme structural parameters of HMMs through a scalable self-assembly approach. Designing the building blocks from atomic layers and confined porous units, HMMs with extreme small-sized units and surface roughness at atomic precision can be created. The research opens a door to developing the next generation of photonic and optoelectronic devices for numerous applications, from super-resolution imaging to biosensing and cloaking.
Mentor: Sui Yang
Featured project | Fall 2021
Richmond Kusi, a materials science and engineering graduate student in the 4+1 accelerated master’s degree program, is exploring the exciting world of hyperbolic metamaterials — engineered materials with unique properties not observed in nature that make them excellent for optical applications — with Assistant Professor Sui Yang. He says he is grateful to be able to explore materials science as a FURI researcher.
Why did you choose the project you’re working on?
I have always had an interest in developing artificially engineered materials that can have widespread applications across areas such as energy, health and sustainability. Working on hyperbolic metamaterials was the best because these materials have unprecedented properties that can be explored and engineered to suit the kind of application I want.
How will your engineering research project impact the world?
Technological improvement in areas such as energy and health require materials with extraordinary properties. The success of the research can open doors for the development of new optoelectronic and photonic devices that have applications in these areas. For example, hyperbolic metamaterials have the potential to be used for developing biosensors that can be used for drug delivery.
How do you see this experience helping with your career?
As a materials engineer who desires a career in the optoelectronic or semiconductor industry, the project will help me learn more about my field of interest. Gaining hands-on experience in the fabrication of metamaterials increases my chances of being employed in such industries. I have networked with experts in these fields and improved my research and presentation skills.
What is the best advice you’ve gotten from your faculty mentor?
Professor Yang said, “Be aggressive on your projects, but be nice to people.” The quote means that I should be persistent in doing projects that are novel and have an impact in this quickly advancing technological world. I work hard to always refine my experiment results and remember to network.