A Clemson University professor who specializes in making lasers more powerful for a variety of applications, including advanced manufacturing, is receiving one of his profession’s top honors.

Liang Dong, a professor of electrical and computer engineering, was elevated to Fellow of the Institute of Electronics and Electrical Engineers (IEEE), a professional society with 419,000 members. Less than 0.1% of voting members are selected annually for this elevation. 

Liang Dong, right, was elevated to Fellow of the Institute of Electronics and Electrical Engineers (IEEE).

Liang Dong, right, was elevated to Fellow of the Institute of Electronics and Electrical Engineers (IEEE).

Dong received his Ph.D. in 1991 from the University of Southampton, then worked in industry and arrived at Clemson in 2010. He holds 27 patents, has seen his scholarly work cited more than 9,400 times and has attracted $8 million in research funding in seven years.

Dong’s peers said that while he was a Ph.D. student, he did pioneering work on the mechanisms of photosensitivity in optical fibers. The research led to significant breakthroughs in the understanding of physical and chemical processes and helped establish the foundation for further research in the area.

While working at Corning, he was featured on the cover of Laser Focus World for his work on fiber design for the suppression of cladding modes in fiber Bragg gratings.

Dong has also made a significant impact on fiber lasers, especially high-power fiber lasers, peers said. He started working on rare-earth doped optical fibers in the early 1990s and has made significant contributions to the development of optimized glass hosts for efficient fiber laser operations with minimum detrimental effects.

When Dong moved to Clemson, he continued his efforts in the development of advanced optical fibers for power scaling of fiber lasers.

Hai Xiao, chair of the Department of Holcombe Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, congratulated Dong on his elevation to IEEE Fellow.

“IEEE is one of the world’s leading professional organizations, and being named Fellow is a high honor,” Xiao said. “Liang Dong is highly deserving. It is a reflection of the high level of scholarship he brings to Clemson.”