Prof. A. G. Unil Perera

Dr. A. G. Unil Perera, obtained his bachelor’s degree (Physics Special, 1st Class Honors) from the University of Colombo and MS and PhD from the University of Pittsburgh. He is a Regent’s Professor in the Department of Physics & Astronomy at Georgia State University (GSU).

His research focus is on developing novel multi band, bias and polarization selectable photon detectors covering a wide range from Ultraviolet to Far Infrared (Terahertz). He has participated in several research workshops and has presented invited talks all over the world including International and Sri Lankan Universities, High Schools and Defense establishments. More recently he was instrumental in organizing a webinar on “Graduate Studies in US” for the south East Asian audiences.

He has written 6 book chapters and has contributed to the CRC dictionary of electronics, edited or co-edited several books on Infrared Detectors including a volume on thin film optical devices for a 5 volume handbook, served on NSF, DOE, and NASA review panels in addition to reviewing numerous research proposals and papers. Dr. Perera has had over 150 peer reviewed technical articles published and has 5 patents to his credit in addition to 100s of proceedings articles. He has received about 10 Million US dollars from various funding agencies to carry out his detector development work over the years.

He is a Life Fellow of the American Physical Society and a Life Fellow of the Society of Photo-Instrumentation Engineers, a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and a Fellow of the IEEE Photonics Society. His work was featured in various Professional journals such as “Laser Focus World, Photonics Spectra, and the Reviews of Modern Physics”. He is a member of the Editorial board of the IEEE Journal of Electron Device Society (JEDS) and an Associate Editor of the Sri Lankan Journal of Physics. He is also the CEO of NDP Optronics LLC, a device technology company, with a technology license from GSU, to develop specific detectors for US Defense Department and NASA.

He has won almost all departmental, college and university awards at GSU including the most prestigious “Alumni Distinguished Professor Award” in 2010. He had not forgotten his roots, and was instrumental in establishing joint tri partite research programs with the Institute of Fundamental Science, Hantana, Sri Lanka and the IIT- Chennai and GSU. He also established a joint PhD program with IFS, where IFS junior researchers can obtain a PhD at GSU.

In addition, his joint undergraduate degree program allows the University of Colombo students to complete a Bachelors degree in US, paying in state tuition. He also organized and chaired an international conference on Infrared detectors in Sri Lanka and helped the authorities to understand the importance of night vision. As the Graduate director of the Physics Program at GSU, he has given opportunities to more than 25 Sri Lankan students to obtain their PhDs in US.

Other activities he is involved in promoting Sri Lanka includes, establishing Awards to be given to top students at University of Colombo and at Ananda College, Colombo in addition to supporting underprivileged students at both institutes.