Materials Science & Engineering
Phone: 208-426-5705 | Fax: 208-426-2470 | Office: MEC 202M
Dr. William B. Knowlton received his B.S in 1992, M.S. in 1995, and Ph.D. in 1998, in materials science and engineering from the University of California at Berkeley under the direction of Professor Eugene Haller. For his master of science work, he fabricated one of the first prototype dark matter particle (weakly interacting massive particle candidate or WIMP) detectors operating at 20 mK using phonon transparent ultra pure Ge eutectically bonded to neutron transmutation doped Ge. His doctoral work included the study of point defects and modeling diffusion in silicon and the development, fabrication, characterization of x-ray detectors and far-infrared resonant detectors.
In 1997, he joined Hewlett Packard Labs where he studied dislocations and structural properties in heteroepitaxial grown thin film and bulk grown GaN materials systems to optimize light output in light emitting diodes (LEDs). He joined Insight Analytical Labs in 1998 where he consulted and performed electromigration and dielectric reliability studies.
In 2000, he joined the faculty in Electrical and Computer Engineering at Boise State University. With Dr. Amy Moll (Materials Science and Engineering), he has co-developed five new programs and a department in Materials Science and Engineering where he is the Coordinator for Graduate Studies and holds a joint appointment as a Professor. He has established two laboratories and co-established another laboratory. He has published over 70 papers in peer reviewed journals or conferences and has two patents. His research activities include device reliability physics, materials characterization, nanofabrication, biomaterials, magnetic materials and molecular electronic devices. In the last several years, several colleagues and he have developed an inherently multidisciplinary research cohort in which they share ideas, students, and resources. The undergraduate and graduate students performing research in this research cohort are majoring in materials science and engineering, electrical and computer engineering, mechanical engineering, physics, chemistry, and biology. The research cohort collaborates with colleagues in engineering, biology, physics and chemistry and with industry including Micron, SEMATECH and Freescale (formerly Motorola).
Prof. Knowlton has been honored with several teaching and research awards including 2011, 2008, and 2004 Boise State University Top Ten Scholar/Alumni Association Honored Faculty Member Awards, 2007 College of Engineering Professor of the Year Award, 2004 IEEE Student Chapter Electrical and Computer Engineering Professor of the Year Award, the 2004 Boise State University Presidential Research and Scholarship Award and as a 2002 NSF New Century Scholar. He is a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (Senior Member), Materials Research Society, and the American Physical Society. From 2002 – 2005 and 2008-2011, he has been a member of the organizing committee for the IEEE International Integrated Reliability Workshop.