A pair of UCLA electrical engineering graduate students – Sidhant Tiwari and Zhi (Jackie) Yao – have received a 2015 Qualcomm Innovation Fellowship of $100,000 for their proposal on a new way to design microscale antennas using specialized magnetic materials.

Their joint research proposal is titled “Bulk Acoustic Wave Resonators for Antenna Applications through Multiferroic Coupling.” Simply, it uses mechanical stress instead of an electric current to generate radio waves with an antenna much smaller and thinner than their conventional counterparts.

Out of 146 submitted proposals, 35 finalist teams were chosen to present their proposal to Qualcomm in San Diego. Four UCLA Engineering teams, the most of any school, were among the finalists – three from Electrical Engineering and one from Computer Science. Eight winning teams, including Tiwari and Yao, were selected.

Yao, who is advised by Associate Professor Ethan Wang and Tiwari, who is advised by Associate Professor Rob Candler, are also members of the NSF-funded Center for Translations Applications for Nanoscale Multiferroic Systems (TANMS). Candler and Wang are both thrust leaders at TANMS, for 3-D and 2-D multiferroics respectively.