On the Path of Innovation, Discovery, and Entrepreneurship

Professor Stephen Y. Chou,
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Princeton University, Princeton NJ, USA; Founder of Nanonex, NanoOpto, and Essenlix Corporation, Co-Founder of BioNano Genomics Inc.


William Mong Distinguished Lectures in Engineering Series:

The speaker will share his nearly four decades of experiences in pursuing innovation and discovery, and in moving discoveries from university labs into products in the commercial world.

In particular, the speaker will discuss (i) the guiding principles and the driving forces behind his nanotechnology research and his key inventions and discoveries in nanotechnologies and applications; (ii) his experience with society reactions to an outside-of-the-box approach; and (iii) what he learnt in moving his research into commercial world.

The speaker will use his work in nano-transistors/single electron transistor, nanoimprint, nanophotonic devices, nano-channel DNA sequencing and iMOST (instant Mobile Self-Test) as examples.  

About the Speaker

Stephen Y. Chou, Joseph C. Elgin Professor of Engineering, at Princeton University, Founder and Co-Founder of four startup companies, a member of US National Academy of Engineering, a member of US National Academy of Inventors, PhD from MIT (1986), and a recipient of other 40 awards and honors.

Professor Chou’s research over past 40 years covers several different fields: nanotechnology (electrical, optical, magnetic, biological), bioengineering, and diagnostics, as well as related fields and applications. His work and inventions have significantly impacted both academia and industry, and have created new research fields and new industries and business.

Professor Chou’s most well-known inventions, which led to new research fields and new industries, include nanoimprint – a new paradigm in nanopatterning that has become a billion dollar industry, 7 nm grate-wrap-around transistors/memories, lithographically-induced-self-assembly (LISA), single domain-patterned-media (quantized disk) – a new paradigm in magnetic data storage, new nanophotonics (e.g. subwavelength optics, ultra-sensitive Raman and fluorescence sensors, nanoplasmonic LEDs, and solar cells), nanochannel single DNA molecule analyzer, a new ultra-sensitive biosensor (D2PA), and a game-changing new instant mobile self-test (iMOST) platform. 

Professor Chou founded Essenlix Corp. – a digital health and wellness company in 2013 and has led its growth.  He is the primary inventor of Essenlix’s iMOST™ (Instant Mobile Self-Test) – a game-changing instant mobile health self-test platform. iMOST is designed to allow a person to accurately perform a diagnostic/health test her/himself, anywhere, anytime, using a single drop of body fluid and a smartphone, having a test-to-result time of ~60 seconds, at a low cost, with the result sent immediately to professionals. iMOST was made possible by outside-the-box thinking and transformative innovations, including Intelligent Fault Tolerant paradigm (ITF) for accurate test results under imperfect testing conditions, One-Device-for-All (one card format and one reader for different sample types (blood, saliva, urine, swaps, sputum, breath, mucus, tissues, etc.) and different assays (immuno-, colorimetric, cytology and pathology, genetic) and different biomarker types (cell, protein, nucleic acids, and small molecules)), and new assay processes. These innovations are implemented through nanotechnologies, nano-enabled AI/machine learning (NEAM), micro/nano-optics, advanced-imaging, and advanced biotechnologies.


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