Featured Speaker Bios

Elizabeth Carr

Elizabeth Carr MS ’91, PhD ’94
Agilent Technologies, R&D Manager

Elizabeth (Liz) Carr graduated from the Buhrman group in 1994.  For her thesis work she studied thin silicon oxides for silicon integrated circuits using XPS and electrical characterization. From 1994 to 2000 Liz was a member of technical staff in the materials characterization group at Hewlett-Packard Laboratories in Palo Alto, CA. In 2000 she left HP to be at home full-time with her three young children. From 2007-2011 Liz worked as a consultant doing surface analysis, microscopy and nano/microfabrication for several Silicon Valley companies, including Agilent Technologies (a spin-off of HP). In 2011 Liz joined Agilent Labs in the micro-separations group as a scientist, and in 2015 Liz was promoted to R&D manager. Liz’s group develops novel coatings, materials and microfabrication to advance the capabilities of Agilent’s life science and chemical analysis instrumentation.

Ursula Gibson

Ursula Gibson MS ’78, PhD ’82
Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Professor, Department of Physics

Gibson received her Ph.D. in physics from Cornell University, and held faculty positions at the University of Arizona Optical Sciences Center in Tucson and Dartmouth’s Thayer School of Engineering. Visiting positions include USAFA, NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center, Tampere University of Technology, Chalmers University, the University of Queensland, and a Fulbright at VTT in Finland.  Today, Gibson is a professor of physics at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, and holds adjunct professorships at KTH in Sweden and the Chemistry Department at Dartmouth College.  Her research focuses on optical materials.


Luqiao Liu

Luqiao Liu MS ’10, PhD ’12
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Assistant Professor,
Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Luqiao Liu is an assistant professor in the department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT. He received his BS in physics from Peking University, Beijing, in 2006 and his PhD in Buhrman’s group of AEP from Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, in 2012. Prof. Liu worked as a research staff member at IBM T. J. Watson Research Center between 2012 and 2015. His research mostly focuses on exploring new materials and device structures that can be used as building blocks for spintronic applications. Specifically, Luqiao has been working on studying electrically induced magnetic switching and domain wall motion for memory and logic applications, growing magnetic thin films with strong perpendicular anisotropy for enhancing data storage density, as well as developing fabricating techniques for nanoscale devices.


Monica Plisch

Monica Plisch MS ’99, PhD ’01
American Physical Society, Director of Education and Diversity

Monica Plisch is Director of Education and Diversity at the American Physical Society (APS). She leads initiatives to improve physics education, including the Physics Teacher Education Coalition (PhysTEC) project, a significant effort of APS to address the national shortage of qualified high school physics teachers. Monica also leads initiatives to increase diversity and improve inclusion of women, minorities and LGBT physicists. Prior to her 10 years at APS, Monica served as Director of Education for the Center for Nanoscale Systems at Cornell University. She is a Fellow of the APS.

Vlad Pribiag

Vlad-Stefan Pribiag MS ’06, PhD ’10
University of Minnesota, Assistant Professor, Department of Physics and Astronomy

Vlad Pribiag received his Ph.D. in 2010 from Cornell, where he investigated the magnetization dynamics of magnetic vortices driven by spin-transfer torques in Bob Buhrman’s group. For his postdoctoral work in Delft, he focused on quantum transport in low-dimensional materials with strong spin-orbit coupling, including single-spin dynamics in quantum dots and superconducting transport in 2D topological insulator devices. Vlad joined the School of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Minnesota in fall 2014. His current work focuses on the physics of nanoscale devices based on low-dimensional materials, such as 2D topological insulators, complex oxide interfaces and semiconductor nanowires

Ilya Krivorotov

Ilya Krivorotov (former post-doc)
University of California, Irvine, Professor, Department of Physics & Astronomy and School of Physical Sciences

Ilya Krivorotov is Professor of Physics at the University of California, Irvine. He received Ph.D. in physics from the University of Minnesota in 2002 and was a postdoctoral associate at Cornell University before joining the faculty at UC Irvine in 2005. The focus of his research is physical phenomena resulting from the interactions between magnetic, electronic and lattice degrees of freedom in magnetic nanostructures. Examples of such research include spin currents and spin torques in ferromagnetic nanostructures, magnetization dynamics of nanomagnets, magneto-electric effect in nanostructures, proximity effect in ferromagnet/superconductor systems and non-equilibrium magnetic transitions driven by spin-polarized current.

Anuj Bhagwati

Anuj Bhagwati ’91, MS ’94
A.T.E. Enterprises, Managing Director/CEO

Anuj Bhagwati is Managing Director of A.T.E. Enterprises, India.  He has created technology-based businesses in textile engineering; energy-efficient cooling; waste-water treatment; IoT; SHE in printing and textile; and solar thermal. Bhagwati spends a lot of time with various non-profits: mainly in urban planning, governance and education. These include the Urban Design Research Institute, Mumbai, the Kalaghoda Association, the Praja Foundation, and the K J Somaiya Trust. He is a member of the Cornell University Council and also of the Advisory Council of Cornell’s College of Architecture, Art and Planning.

Robert A. Bartynski

Robert A. Bartynski ’80
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Professor and Chair, Department of Physics and Astronomy

Robert A. Bartynski received a B.S from Cornell University in 1980 and a Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Pennsylvania in 1986. In that year, Bartynski joined the Department of Physics & Astronomy at Rutgers University as an Assistant Professor, became Associate Professor in 1992, Full Professor in 1998, and is currently Chair of the Department. He is a Fellow of the APS, the AAAS, and the AVS.  His research focuses on experimental studies of the electronic, geometric and chemical properties of surfaces, interfaces, thin films, and nanostructures, primarily employing electron spectroscopic techniques and scanning probe microscopy.

Takahiro Moriyama

Takahiro Moriyama (former post-doc)
Kyoto University, Associate Professor, Institute for Chemical Research

Takahiro (Taka) is now an associate professor in Kyoto University, Japan, where he is leading various spintronics research projects. After earning B. S. and M. Eng in materials science from Tohoku University in 2003, he decided to study in USA and obtained Ph. D. in physics from University of Delaware in 2008. He then decided to continue his academic career as postdoctoral associate in both Buhrman and Ralph groups during 2008~2011, where he really enjoyed a hot stream of new physics as well as a cold stream of air from the Lakes.

Stephen Russek

Stephen Russek MS ’86, PhD ’90
National Institute of Standards and Technology, Physicist, Magnetic Imaging Group

Stephen E. Russek obtained an A.B. in physics from Harvard University in 1980, spent two years working at AT&T Bell Laboratories researching silicon device physics, and then obtained a Ph.D. in physics from Cornell University in 1990 in superconducting devices.    He currently leads the Biomagnetic Imaging Standards Project at NIST.  His research interests include the development of MRI standards, nanomagnetic MRI contrast agents, quantitative MRI, high-speed spintronic devices, superconducting/spintronic devices for advanced digital and neuromorphic applications. He is author/coauthor of over 200 publications, has written several book chapters, has two patents, and is a fellow of the American Physical Society.  He is a recipient of the Dept. of Commerce silver medal for his work on spintronics and spin oscillators, a Dept. of Commerce gold medal for his work on MRI phantoms and quantitative medical imaging, and the Dept. of Commerce Ron Brown medal for his work in MRI standards for brain and cancer imaging.

Hans Hallen

Hans Hallen ’84, MS ’86, PhD ’91
North Carolina State University, Professor, Department of Physics

Hans D. Hallen received his B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in applied physics from Cornell University in 1984, 1986 and 1991, respectively. During 1991-1993, he was with the Physical Research Laboratory, AT&T Bell Laboratories, Murray Hill, NJ.  He joined the North Carolina State University Physics Department in 1993, where he is currently a professor. He is a Fellow of the APS.  He research interests are in nanoscale optical spectroscopy, hot electron induced migration of atoms in metals, models and measurements of microwave propagation, resonance Raman spectroscopy, and spectroscopic and multistatic approaches to remote study of aerosols and the lower atmosphere.

Goesta Ehnholm

Gösta Ehnholm (former post-doc)
Aalto Univeristy, Visiting Scientist