Jayant Baliga, a professor of electrical engineering and director of North Carolina State Universty’s Power Semiconductor Research Center (PSRC), is among five inventors nationally who will receive the National Medal of Technology and Innovation, the White House announced Tuesday.

Michael Escuti, an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, was named to the list of people to receive the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers.

Baliga is being honored for “development and commercialization of the insulated gate bipolar transistor and other power semiconductor devices that are extensively used in transportation, lighting, medicine, defense, and renewable energy generation systems.”

Escuti was honored in the list announced Monday for his pioneering development of liquid crystal “polarization gratings,” which consist of a thin layer of liquid crystal material on a glass plate. The White House also recognized him for educating students through collaborations with international academic teams and industries, as well as for outreach work in underserved communities.

Tuesday, President Barack Obama also announced the names of seven people who are to receive the National Medal of Science.

Baliga has been at NCSU since 1988 and has been named a distinguished university professor. He invested the insulated gate bipolar transistor during 15 years he spent at the General Electric Research and Development Center in Niskayuna, N.Y., near Schenectady.

He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a Fellow of the IEEE.

Escuti is director of the Opto-Electronics and Lightwave Engineering Group at NCSU.

Escuti is commercializing his research through several industrial partnerships, including his own start-up company, ImagineOptix Corp., that has already prototyped a tiny, highly efficient projection display that could revolutionize displays on hand-held and mobile devices.

He came to N.C. State University in 2004.

Other receiving the technology medal along with Baliga are:

  • Rakesh Agrawal, Purdue University

For an extraordinary record of innovations in improving the energy efficiency and reducing the cost of gas liquefaction and separation. These innovations have had significant positive impacts on electronic device manufacturing, liquefied gas production, and the supply of industrial gases for diverse industries.

  • C. Donald Bateman, Honeywell

For developing and championing critical flight-safety sensors now used by aircraft worldwide, including ground proximity warning systems and wind-shear detection systems.

  • Yvonne C. Brill, RCA Astro Electronics (Retired)

For innovation in rocket propulsion systems for geosynchronous and low earth orbit communication satellites, which greatly improved the effectiveness of space propulsion systems.

  • Michael F. Tompsett,TheraManager

For pioneering work in materials and electronic technologies including the design and development of the first charge-coupled device (CCD) imagers.

The National Medal of Science recipients named Tuesday are:

  • Jacqueline K. Barton, California Institute of Technology

For discovery of a new property of the DNA helix, long-range electron transfer, and for showing that electron transfer depends upon stacking of the base pairs and DNA dynamics. Her experiments reveal a strategy for how DNA repair proteins locate DNA lesions and demonstrate a biological role for DNA-mediated charge transfer.

  • Ralph L. Brinster, University of Pennsylvania

For his fundamental contributions to the development and use of transgenic mice. His research has provided experimental foundations and inspiration for progress in germline genetic modification in a range of species, which has generated a revolution in biology, medicine, and agriculture.

  • Shu Chien, University of California, San Diego

For pioneering work in cardiovascular physiology and bioengineering, which has had tremendous impact in the fields of microcirculation, blood rheology and mechanotransduction in human health and disease.

  • Rudolf Jaenisch, Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research and Massachusetts Institute of Technology

For improving our understanding of epigenetic regulation of gene expression: the biological mechanisms that affect how genetic information is variably expressed. His work has led to major advances in our understanding of mammalian cloning and embryonic stem cells.

  • Peter J. Stang, University of Utah

For his creative contributions to the development of organic supramolecular chemistry and for his outstanding and unique record of public service.

  • Richard A. Tapia, Rice University

For his pioneering and fundamental contributions in optimization theory and numerical analysis and for his dedication and sustained efforts in fostering diversity and excellence in mathematics and science education.

  • Srinivasa S.R. Varadhan, New York University

For his work in probability theory, https://localtechwire-pubtools.cbcnewmedia.com/pubtools2/lib/FCKeditor/editor/images/spacer.gifspecially his work on large deviations from expected random behavior, which has revolutionized this field of study during the second half of the twentieth century and become a cornerstone of both pure and applied probability. The mathematical insights he developed have been applied in diverse fields including quantum field theory, population dynamics, finance, econometrics, and traffic engineering.

Get the latest news alerts: Follow WRAL Tech Wire at Twitter.