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Specht wins DAGSI fellowship in aerospace technology

Teressa SpechtA graduate student at The Ohio State University won a fellowship for her plans to support the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) and pursue a career in aerospace technologies after earning her Ph.D.

Winner and Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Graduate Research Associate, Teressa Specht, is part of the KIND Laboratory group working under George R. Smith Chair in ECE Professor Sanjay Krishna at Ohio State.

She won the AFRL/Dayton Area Graduate Studies Institute (DAGSI) Ohio Student-Faculty Research Fellowship program, which supports graduate science and engineering students and faculty conducting research in areas essential to AFRL at Wright Patterson Air Force Base.

Specht is the third Ohio State graduate student to win the DAGSI Fellowship this year. Learn more about the other winners. 

All DAGSI projects involve basic studies into aerospace technologies and originate from research topics provided by the four AFRL Directorates headquartered at Wright-Patterson: Human Effectiveness; Aerospace Systems; Materials and Manufacturing; and Sensors.

Specht received her BS and MS degrees in Electrical Engineering from the University of New Mexico in 2012 and 2016, respectively. She spent several years in industry at Ball Aerospace before enrolling in the Ph.D. program at Ohio State.

Specht’s research interests involve infrared device characterization and fabrication, including surface passivation for long-wave infrared superlattice detectors. She will combine her recent passivation work with her primary research focus on high performance long-wave infrared detector arrays based on III-V antimonide strained layer superlattices under the sponsorship of John Scheihing at AFRL.

“While long-wave infrared superlattice detectors are already used in industry, detector cooling is still a large issue for these systems. We hope to address this issue by improving detector array performance using new approaches to both material system designs and processes," Specht said. “Collaborating with AFRL to design new band engineered detector technology will also allow us to create solutions amenable to commercial-scale manufacturing using conventional read-out circuits.”

The DAGSI fellowship program is intended to encourage research ties and collaboration within the Ohio academic science and engineering community; leverage Ohio research funding with AFRL, universities, and industry funding and other resources; and ultimately develop research talent to meet AFRL and Ohio high-tech workforce needs.