As director, Professor Eggleton will set the future course of Sydney Nano, building on the strong foundations that have been established during the institute’s first two years.
“I am incredibly excited about this new role and thrilled that the University has asked me to lead this wonderful new institute,” said Professor Eggleton, who is currently the director of the Centre for Ultrahigh Bandwidth Devices for Optical Systems (CUDOS).
“Sydney Nano will change the direction of Australian science – nanoscience will impact on both fundamental research and the very fabric of our society. I look forward to reaching out across the whole University and building the large-scale, cross-disciplinary collaborations that are needed to achieve this global impact.”
Professor Eggleton, who will take up the position on 1 May, succeeds Professor Susan Pond, who stepped into the directorship in early 2017, initially for 12 months.
Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor Duncan Ivison thanked Professor Pond for her leadership and vision.
Congratulating both Professors Pond and Eggleton, Professor Ivison said: “Sydney Nano has achieved so much since its launch just two years ago. It has become an exemplar of our commitment to multidisciplinary research and education. Under Ben’s leadership, we will expand our work with colleagues across the University to make it one of the most successful nanoscience and technology institutes in the world.”
Launched in April 2016, Sydney Nano is a world-leading environment for scientists, engineers, medical researchers and the University community to discover and harness knowledge at the nanoscale for the benefit of society.
Sydney Nano is based at the purpose-built $150 million Sydney Nanoscience Hub, with reach into all our faculties and schools.
Its work supports a wide range of activities, including sustainable approaches to energy generation, storage and distribution; globally recognised work on quantum computing; improved detection, diagnosis and treatment of disease; robotics; work at the frontiers of materials science and engineering; and developing the next generation of information and communication technology.
Professor Eggleton has been an ARC Laureate Fellow and founding director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Ultrahigh Bandwidth Devices for Optical Systems (CUDOS).
His groundbreaking research into nanoscale optical waveguides underpins novel applications in telecommunications, quantum technologies and sensing.
An alumnus, Professor Eggleton completed his undergraduate and PhD studies at Sydney. He held several roles in industry, including at prestigious Bell Laboratories in the USA, where he was director of photonics devices research, before joining the University again in 2003 as professor of physics.
Since then, he has received more than $54 million in research grants while at the University, most recently an ARC Linkage grant announced in February to develop advanced technologies to enhance satellite communications, radar systems and surveillance capabilities for defence, as well as lay the groundwork for future fifth-generation wireless communications.
Professor Eggleton is one of the most highly cited academics at the University, with an h-index of 65 (Web of Science) and is the author or co-author of more than 460 journal publications.
He has won several prizes, including NSW Scientist of the Year for Physics and Astronomy, the Eureka Prize for Leadership in Science, and a Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Excellence for Outstanding Research.
Professor Eggleton is a fellow of both the Australian Academy of Science and the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering. He is also co-director of the NSW Smart Sensing Network.