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Edward Furlani named fellow of National Academy of Inventors

By CORY NEALON

Published December 20, 2017

UB researcher Edward P. Furlani, whose pioneering work in microfluidics, inkjet systems, optoelectronics and other fields is recognized worldwide, has been named a fellow of the National Academy of Inventors.

The academy cited Furlani for a “highly prolific spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development and the welfare of society.”

The peer-nominated honor is the highest professional distinction accorded to academic researchers by the academy. Among other individuals, the list of NAI fellows includes presidents and senior leaders of research universities and nonprofit research institutes, Nobel laureates, and recipients of the U.S. National Medal of Technology and Innovation and the U.S. National Medal of Science.

Furlani, who holds a PhD in physics and appointments as a professor in the departments of Chemical and Biological Engineering, and Electrical Engineering in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, is among 155 fellows named on Dec. 12. He and the others will be inducted at a ceremony on April 5 in Washington, D.C.

Prior to joining UB in 2011, Furlani was a principal scientist at Eastman Kodak Company in Rochester, where he was awarded 152 U.S. patents and 40 foreign patents.

His industrial experience spans 27 years and includes a broad range of applications in the fields of microfluidics, inkjet systems, optoelectronics, applied magnetics and microsystems technology.

Among Kodak’s most prolific inventors, he received the Prolific Inventor Award (2008) from the Society for Imaging Science and Technology, and Kodak’s Chief Technology Officer Century Award (2001) in recognition of his innovative contributions.

Since joining UB, he has established a research program that develops computational methods and models to create next-generation materials and devices with features and functionality designed at the nano- to micro-scale. His current projects span applications of microfluidics, additive manufacturing, bio-sensing, energy storage, photonics and bio-applications of magnetic particles.

Furlani serves as an advisory board member for various companies and as a symposium organizer and steering committee member for international conferences. He also serves on the editorial boards and as a reviewer for numerous journals, and on national and international scientific review panels.

His cumulative research contributions include more than 100 peer-reviewed publications, 90 publications in conference proceedings, a sole-authored textbook on applied magnetics, and numerous book chapters and invited conference presentations.

Furlani is a graduate of UB, having received a PhD in theoretical physics, a master’s degree in physics and a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering.

The National Academy of Inventors is a nonprofit member organization comprising U.S. and international universities, and governmental and nonprofit research institutes with more than 3,000 individual inventor members and fellows spanning more than 200 institutions. The academy was founded in 2010 to recognize and encourage inventors with patents issued from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office; enhance the visibility of academic technology and innovation; encourage the disclosure of intellectual property; educate and mentor innovative students; and translate the inventions of its members to benefit society.