Min Qiu - new professor
Min Qiu is our latest professor – he was appointed professor in Photonics from November 1. He is very proud over his new position, but he does not think that his professional life will change much. He is only 34 years old and thus our youngest professor. His modest explanation to his fast career is that he has done the right things at the right time.
Min Qiu received the B.Sc. degree from the Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China, in 1995, and the Ph.D. degree in Condensed Matter Physics from the same university in 1999. He received his second Ph.D. degree in Electromagnetic Theory from KTH in 2001. He joined KTH in Kista 2001 as an Assistant Professor and was awarded the so called Ingvar grant for future Research leaders in 2005 from the Swedish Foundation for Strategic Research (SSF) – a six year grant about 9 MSEK.
“That grant changed everything", Min Qiu explains. "It meant that I could build up my research group in the nanophotonic area. It made me and my research more visible. And my group now has 6 Phd students!”
His research area still excites him. He is convinced that future integrated circuits will be build on photonics as opposed to electronics. And the reason for this is that optical devices can be ultra compact thanks to novel nanophotonic structures. He will continue to do research in the same area, but he sees a slightly broaden the scope,
“I am looking into new applications for my research", Min Qiu says. "For example in solar energy and solar cells because certain photonic materials can absorb light very efficiently. And further in the future I hope to look into bio-applications for my research."
Min Qiu was appointed a Senior Researcher Position by Swedish Research Council (VR) 2007 – a six year position. And as a part of the new Linné center ADOPT and it’s scheme to recruit younger researchers he has received funding to employ an assistant professor to his group, so the financial side looks good.
“I have my financing secured at least for two more years", Min Qiu says. "But I don’t know anything about the future."
But this does not worry Min Qiu. He seems to be convinced that the funding will come – specially since he is moving into the hot application field of energy. But he is eager to underline that his interest in the area is not just to get financing, but because solar cells really interest him.
How will your professional life change now as a professor?
“It will not be much different I think. I will continue to do my research as before", Min Qiu says. "Perhaps I will have a bit more freedom and perhaps I will work more with strategic questions on the school level."
And what about the future? What will be the next step now when you already are a professor?
“That is a good question! My colleagues have asked me what I will do the rest of my 33 active years”, Min says laughingly. “I don’t really know. I am very happy with my life now, but I might spend some time abroad as a guest professor to get new ideas.”